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Texas Woman's University

TWU HUMAN RESOUCES OPERATING POLICY 50.03

SUBJECT:          Standards of Conduct, Discipline and Corrective Action Guidelines, and 
                             Separation for Non-Faculty Personnel

 

DATE PASSED:            January 17, 1989

DATE REVIEWED:       May 1, 2004

REVIEW NEXT BY:      May, 2009

PURPOSE

The purpose of the Texas Woman's University Human Resources Operating Policy and Procedure (TWU OP) is to establish policy regarding classified, professional, administrative and executive employee conduct, discipline and separations.

Standards of Conduct and Discipline:

General Policy

Employee Conduct

Reasonable rules of conduct are maintained in order to define and protect the rights, safety, and welfare of the Texas Woman’s University and its employees. 

All employees are expected to be in compliance with all local, state and federal regulations and statutes.  In general, the rules of conduct of the University are reasonable, common sense rules which the University considers necessary to insure the mutual welfare of the University and its employees.

Should questions arise, an employee should discuss them with his or her supervisor.  Employees are subject to corrective action including dismissal for violation of University rules or regulations, departmental policies, federal, state or local laws.  The following list, while not conclusive, contains some examples of violations of the general rules of conduct governing the actions of employees:

  • Violation of public law.
  • Willfully or negligently misusing, damaging or removing property belonging to the University, other employees, or students.
  • Theft or dishonesty, for example:
    Falsification of time cards/sheets, including entering time not actually worked or not entering time that was actually worked, or punching another employee’s time card.
    Falsification of personnel records, theft or removing from the premises without proper authorization any article belonging to the University or other employees.
  • Violation of safety or sanitation rules and regulations as explained by supervisors.
  • Smoking in unauthorized areas.
  • Carrying, possessing, selling, or being under the influence of intoxicants, narcotics, or other illegal drugs on University premises.
  • Carrying or possessing firearms, explosives, or other lethal or illegal weapons on University premises.
  • Insubordination
  • Repeated tardiness or absence, absence without proper notification to the supervisor or without satisfactory reason, failure to report for work or make appropriate contact with the supervisor to report an absence from work, or if unavailable for work.  For additional information, please review Policy 3.17 "Staff Attendance, Vacation, and Sick Leave".
  • Failure to perform employment job duties.
  • Assault, attempted assault, or fighting on the job.
  • Misuse of TWU Internet access, e-mail, telephones, long distance codes, or any other University property.
  • Unethical behavior as outlined in the TWU Ethics Policy for Employees 3.02.
  • Sexually harassing or discriminating against other employees or students.  See policy 3.05 on Sexual Harassment and policy and 3.04 on Nondiscrimination for additional information.
  • Violation of other future TWU policies or rules.

A violation of the standards established in this policy will result in disciplinary or corrective action ranging from an oral reprimand to employment dismissal from TWU.

Supervisors have the authority and responsibility to establish and maintain an effective and orderly work force of employees under their charge.  The OHR encourages supervisors to use the attached Corrective Action Guidelines to address unsatisfactory job performance and misconduct issues. 

Notwithstanding any other provisions in this document, TWU reserves the right to add to or eliminate any part of the steps described in the Corrective Action Guidelines.  This Policy and Corrective Action Guidelines do not preclude At-Will discontinuation or termination of Employment.

Separations and Demotions:

Types of Separation:

Dismissal Termination

A dismissal termination is the involuntary removal of an employee for cause from the service of TWU when the removal results from misconduct, insubordination, poor work performance or other good cause including actions resulting from the Corrective Action Guidelines.

Resignation

A resignation is the voluntary removal of an employee from the service of TWU when the removal is initiated by the employee.

Reduction in Force

A Reduction in Force is a situation including, but not limited to, a lack of funds, lack of work, a reorganization, or changes in research needs or technologies, that may require a reduction in the work force to ensure the continued quality and efficiency of the University.  These procedures are not to be used when an employee is released as an at-will employee and are not to be used to lay off an employee if the sole cause for layoff is either misconduct or lack of satisfactory performance.

For additional information on reductions in force, see policy 3.10.

Dismissal Termination

General Policy

An administrative officer may recommend the dismissal of an employee for inefficiency, insubordination, poor work performance or other cause for any reason.  While TWU is an At-Will employer, it is recommended that dismissal from employment be preceded, where appropriate, by using the Corrective Action Guidelines.

Approvals

Prior concurrence of the Director of Human Resources and the appropriate vice president or chancellor and president shall be obtained prior to dismissing an employee.  Only the chancellor and president or divisional vice president has the authority to approve the employment dismissal of TWU personnel.

Procedures

The supervisor must provide a written request to the Manager of Employee Advocacy and Performance Management (Manager of EA/PM) stating the reason for the dismissal and a description of the final incident.  The supervisor must also obtain and submit evidence of approval from his/her divisional vice president.  The Manager of EA/PM will review the request with the Director of Human Resources.  With the Director of Human Resources’ approval the Manager of EA/PM will submit an approval request to the Vice President of Finance and Administration.

Once approval is given, the Manager of EA/PM will inform the supervisor.  The supervisor will then schedule a dismissal termination meeting with the employee.  During the dismissal termination meeting the supervisor will give the employee an Employment Termination Notice letter (Attachment D).  A copy of this letter should be forwarded to the OHR for the personnel file.  The OHR will supply the supervisor with the appropriate exit paperwork for the terminating employee.

The supervisor/department is responsible for submitting a terminating Personnel Transaction Form on the exiting employee through the appropriate channels.

When utilizing an Employment Termination Notice (Attachment D) generally a two week advance notice shall be given unless the employee is guilty of willful or repeated violation of TWU policies or rules, or the continuation of employment would be detrimental to normal departmental operation.  Dismissal without prior warning may occur, especially for offenses which violate major rules of conduct and when the continuation of employment would be detrimental to normal departmental operation.  Personnel Transaction Form (PTF) and justification is to be submitted to the Office of Human Resources and be approved by the appropriate vice president or chancellor and president before an employee can be dismissed.

Job Abandonment

Job abandonment shall be cause for dismissal after the employee has missed three (3) consecutive, or three (3) non-consecutive work shifts, within a rolling year period, without notifying the employee’s immediate supervisor and/or the appropriate administrative officer of the reason for the absence.  A request to dismiss an employee must be submitted in writing to the Office of Human Resources and approved by the appropriate vice president or the chancellor and president.

Resignation

General Policy

An employee who desires to voluntarily resign from the University should submit a letter of resignation to his or her supervisor generally two weeks in advance of the intended resignation date.  Where written resignation is not practical, a verbal resignation to his or her supervisor may be accepted.

Procedures

The employing department will notify the Office of Human Resources of the intended resignation by sending a copy of the resignation letter and by submitting a Personnel Transaction Form as soon as possible. 

Should an employee resign without giving notice, and in order to avoid overpayment of salary on the employee’s final check, the employee’s supervisor or administrative officer will need to notify the Payroll Office by telephone prior to submission of the PTF.

The exiting employee should obtain an Exit Packet from the Office of Human Resources no later than his or her last working day to make arrangements for receipt of the final paycheck, to discuss retirement refunds, group insurance coverage and to complete and Exit Interview Questionnaire.  All University property must be returned to the supervisor and keys must be returned to the University Access Control Office before the exit process is final.

Reduction in Force

General Policy

An administrative officer may recommend the termination of an employee due to a reorganization or lack of work or funds.  If a reduction in work force becomes necessary, the department head should review University Policy 3.10.

Demotion

General Policy

An administrative officer may demote an employee in order to reassign the employee to a position where he/she will be able to meet performance requirements or as a result of a corrective action taken as outlined in the TWU Corrective Action Guidelines.

Approvals

Approval of the divisional Vice President and the Director of Human Resources is required prior to demoting an employee.

Procedures

Recommendations shall be submitted in writing to the Director of Human Resources to provide information to justify the request.  Such submission should be made prior to any commitment being made and prior to the effective date of the proposed change of status, to provide for review of the action, availability of funds, and compliance with TWU policies.  The Director of Human Resources shall determine that demotions comply with the above. 

Effective Dates of Separation

The University Separation Procedures must be completed prior to the employee receiving his/her final paycheck.

The effective date of an employee’s separation shall be at the close of business of the last day the employee actually works.  If the employee has completed six months of continuous state service, unused vacation entitlement will be paid by lump sum payment. 

In accordance with current General Appropriations Bill of Texas, Article V, Section 2a, the final salary payment to be paid to a monthly salaried employee shall be calculated on the basis of the number of work days to be paid if the period is less than a full month.

APPROVALS:

Policy Reviewer:    Associate Vice President of Human Resources

Policy Approver:    Vice President for Finance and Administration       

page last updated 4/16/2014 3:32 PM