Employee Recognition and Reward
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POLICY NO: 1093
EFFECTIVE DATE: 10/25/02
REVISED DATE: 09/27/11
REVIEWED DATE: 09/26/11
1.1 The Employee Recognition and Reward program is designed to provide incentives to individuals and groups to maximize their contributions to UNMC and to enhance UNMC's ability to hire and retain qualified employees in competitive labor market conditions. This program allows the administrative units and/or department flexibility in creating appropriate recognition and reward structures.
2.1 All regular employees whose overall performance is above and beyond the scope of their position should be given the same opportunity to be rewarded for going the extra mile and for adding value to UNMC.
Service Awards are based solely on the number of years of employment in the University of Nebraska system and are given in 5-year increments for staff and 10 year increments for faculty.
Managerial professional, office service, graduate assistant and other academic employees are eligible for the Outstanding Performance Stipend Award. Faculty and administrative staff are not eligible for this award.
Managerial professional, office service, graduate assistant, other academic employees, faculty and administrative staff are eligible for the Chancellor’s Council Silver ‘U’ Award.
Managerial professional and office service employees are eligible for the Chancellor’s Commendation Gold ‘U’ Award. Faculty and administrative staff are not eligible for this award.
Faculty are eligible for the Outstanding Teacher Award, the Spirit of Community Service Award, the Outstanding Faculty Mentor of Graduate Students Award, the Outstanding Research and Creativity Award (ORCA), the Outstanding Teaching and Creativity Award (OTICA), the Innovation, Development, and Engagement Award (IDEA), and the University-wide Departmental Teaching Award (UDTA).
Faculty are also eligible for the UNMC Scientist Laureate Award, the Distinguished Scientist Award and the New Investigator Award.
All employees are eligible for the Thank ‘U’ Rewards.
Basis of the Policy
3.1 The University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC) has a variety of programs to recognize and reward employees with non-cash and with cash awards. These awards recognize employees whose performance is above and beyond the scope of their position and their achievements add value to the vision and mission of UNMC.
The UNMC Non-Discrimination policy (#1099) should be considered in the recognition and reward selection.
All University-wide, UNMC campus-wide and Unit/department-wide recognition and reward programs are based on the availability of funds at each level.
Outstanding Performance Stipend Awards are based on criteria established at the Unit level (exceeding performance, major contributions to the department or unit, special projects that require exceptional effort, suggestions that improve operations, etc.).
Authorities and Administration
4.1 The UNMC Human Resources’ Division Director of Employee Relations is responsible for the administration, implementation, and maintenance of the Employee Recognition and Reward Policy at the campus level in consultation with the Assistant Vice Chancellor for Business and Finance Executive Director of Human Resources and the Vice Chancellor for Business and Finance.
5.1 It is the policy of the University of Nebraska Medical Center that, when appropriate, a unit or department may make a non-cash or a cash award to an employee or groups of employees for significant accomplishments, achievements, or excellent work performance.
For unit/department wide recognition and rewards programs, units/departments need to provide Human Resources - Employee Relations and Finance - Payroll the unit/department reward and recognition program plan summary and program plan administration. Once program plan summary and plan administration is in compliance with accounting and payroll policies and procedures, the unit/department reward and recognition program may be implemented.
5.2 Centrally funded and administered programs include the following: the Chancellor's Commendation Gold 'U' Award, the Chancellor's Council Silver 'U' Awards, Thank 'U' Rewards, and Service Awards.
Unit administered programs include the following: Outstanding Performance Stipend Award and any incentive or recognition program developed and implemented at the Unit or department level.
UNMC Faculty Senate administered programs include the following: Outstanding Teacher Award, Spirit of Community Service Award and Outstanding Faculty Mentor of Graduate Students Award. These programs are centrally funded.
UNMC Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research administered programs include the following: the UNMC Scientist Laureate Award, the Distinguished Scientist Award and the New Investigator Award.
University of Nebraska - Central Administration administered and funded programs include the following: Outstanding Research and Creativity Award (ORCA), Outstanding Teaching and Creativity Award (OTICA), University-wide Departmental Teaching Award (UDTA), and Engagement Award (IDEA).
5.3 The fair market value of personal property gifts over $50.00 to UNMC employees will be added to taxable wages. Income and social security taxes will be withheld in accordance with the Internal Revenue Service. Gifts that will be excluded from taxation include: 1) personal property gifts for length of service achievement, other special service achievement, or retirement; 2) personal property or gift certificates that may only be used for personal property, when the value is of a De Minimus (small) amount, such as holiday gifts of hams, turkeys, candy or a gift certificate only redeemable for specific products or services of $50 or less.
All cash value awards are subject to taxation.
6.1 Each unit is responsible for keeping records relating to reward and recognition activity for a period of three years afterward.
Employee name and UNMC personnel number
Reason for the recognition
Type of recognition given with reference to purchase order number
Equal Employment Opportunity
7.1 The University of Nebraska Medical Center declares and affirms a policy of equal educational and employment opportunities, affirmative action in employment, and nondiscrimination in providing its services to the public. Therefore, the University of Nebraska Medical Center shall not discriminate against anyone based on race, age, color, disability, religion, sex, national or ethnic origin, marital status, genetic information, sexual orientation, political affiliation, Vietnam-era veteran status, or special disabled Veteran status. Sexual harassment in any form, including hostile environment and quid pro quo, is prohibited.
For additional information, contact Human Resources, Employee Relations at 559-5489, or review the following: Employee Recognition and Reward Procedures Outstanding Performance Stipends Guidelines Nomination Forms:
Chancellor‘s Commendation Gold ‘U’ Award Nomination Form
Chancellor’s Council Silver ‘U’ Award Nomination Form
Innovation, Development and Engagement Award (IDEA)
Outstanding Research and Creative Activity Award (ORCA)
Outstanding Teaching and Instructional Creativity Award (OTICA)
Outstanding Teaching Award Nomination Form and Selection Criteria
The Outstanding Faculty Mentor of Graduate Students Award Nomination Form and Selection Criteria
The Spirit of Community Service Award Nomination Form and Selection Criteria
University-wide Departmental Teaching Award (UDTA)
Reward and Recognition web sites: