SAS Staff Recognition Program


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Goal: The SAS Staff Recognition Program was created to reward our talented and motivated staff and recognize their initiative in solving problems, achieving efficiencies, thinking creatively, and inspiring cooperation across departments and schools throughout the University.

Program: The SAS Staff Recognition Reward is a special one-time payment awarded to selected SAS staff for extraordinary contributions to the mission of the School. These extraordinary contributions are above and beyond the staff member's job description. For the purpose of our program, “above and beyond” reflects completed work that is beyond the scope and responsibility of the nominee’s job description/requirements. The award is intended to reward those staff members whose work is consistent with and committed to the School's objectives for excellent performance:

  • Adding value. We add value to our jobs, departments, programs and the School overall by establishing administrative effectiveness and efficiency, by maintaining the highest level of knowledge in our particular field, and by collaborating and working with others to ensure best practices.
  • Finding solutions to operational challenges. We embrace change and push to find innovative and imaginative solutions to difficult problems. We challenge the status quo when necessary and commit to a solution- based approach to problem solving.
  • Preparing the School for tomorrow. We help build the infrastructure necessary for the School to grow and flourish in the changing world of higher education. We recruit and retain the very best staff to increase our flexibility and response to unforeseen challenges ahead.

Outstanding performance which may merit an award includes one or more of the following:

  • Outstanding customer service
  • Initiative and innovation in solving problems or improving service
  • Actions which result in measurable and significant cost savings
  • Successful completion of special projects
  • Other accomplishments that have a particularly positive impact on the department or the School or the University.

All actions should demonstrate results which speak to staff core qualities at the School. These include collaboration, versatility, excellence, purpose-driven activities towards the larger vision of enhanced success of SAS, and activities which show a passion for personal and professional growth.

The program is designed to acknowledge exceptional and well-defined performance from July 1, 2016 through June 30, 2017. It is not meant to supplement the annual salary review process, which is used to reward a staff member, via a merit increase, for performing his or her job responsibilities.


Nomination Process:

Program Administration: The SAS Staff Recognition Program will be administered by a committee which includes non-exempt and exempt SAS staff in good standing and a faculty member. The three award levels are Gold, Silver and Bronze.

Faculty and staff are encouraged to nominate individuals or teams for efforts performed from July 1, 2016 through June 30, 2017. Individual staff members may nominate themselves for their own accomplishments, and are encouraged to nominate other deserving staff within SAS. All nominations (including self-nominations) must be approved by the nominee's immediate supervisor and department manager prior to their submission. Please contact Brian Clark at briclark@sas.upenn.edu if you would like to confirm an individual's correct supervisor. A previous award recipient may be nominated again, provided the nomination is based on new activity and achievements occurring within the current program year. The committee reserves the right to verify all information with the nominee's supervisor. Nominators should feel free to share the nomination information with the nominee if you so choose.

Please note that the nomination form has been revised for this year.  Please use the information provided on the first page of the nomination form as a guide for an effective nomination.. The submitted nomination form is the only information considered in selecting the award recipients. Please provide specific examples addressing some or all of the five criteria above and explain why the person or team you are nominating deserves to receive an award. (While the format for nominations has been revised this year, you may view examples of effective content by clicking HERE

Eligibility for the SAS Staff Recognition Program is limited to employees who:

  • have completed their introductory period
  • are included in the regular salary increase program
  • are NOT in performance management
  • have received a performance evaluation rating of "consistently meets established goals/expectations" or higher

Qualified staff members are eligible for an award regardless of any recent salary adjustments or promotions. Award recipients must be employed in SAS at the time of the award/payment.

Nomination Deadline: Nominations may be submitted at any time but must be received by July 21, 2017 in order to be considered. They will be reviewed by the Staff Recognition Program committee. Successful nominations may be posted on the SAS HR website as well written examples; all names will be redacted.

Team Nominations: Criteria for a team are the same as for an individual. The selection committee will consider and compare team nominations separately from the individual nominations, and will only have one level of award. Team nominations that demonstrate collaboration between departments or units, or exceptional results from extraordinary efforts, will receive special consideration.

Team Nomination Guidelines: A nominee is eligible to be awarded one individual recognition award as well as a team award provided the individual and team nominations are related to separate and distinct actions.

Team Awards: The team award will be $250 per team member. For team nominations please include two sentences for each member of the team that describes what that staff member did to contribute to the team effort.  

Award Timing: Payments are scheduled to be made each fall. Award recipients will be announced School-wide.

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When you save the document, please use the nominee’s name in the file name. For example, if you are nominating Jane Smith, save the file as jane smith nomination.doc.