In light of the fact that many employees working remotely, self-quarantining, or just laying low for the time being, HR wanted to ensure that our faculty and staff have the necessary resources available during this challenging time.  To that end, we have put together a listing of services, programs, training and development resources, and anything else we could think of that may help, but know we are here and ready to assist.  Many of these require a PrideNET login, so make sure you're signed-in before clicking most links.

1.  The Employee Assistant Program (EAP)- offers resources, professional training, coaching and counseling, along with a host of other services.  These are all provided free of charge to ALL employees of the College and their family members.  This also includes part-time staff and adjuncts. 

  • For supervisors, HR suggests taking the training Managing a Virtual Office, as many are doing this for the very first time.  There are almost 100 different sessions and topics to choose from, find one that speaks to you, or watch them all.
  • And for all employees, who couldn't use a little Stress Management assistance during turbulent times. 
  • Additionally, the service provides certified financial coaching and tons of other unique training content, all of which is provided at no cost to our employees.  To login, click here use the PDF located here for login information.

2.  The Springfield College YouTube Channel-  more than fun, it's educational fun! 

  • Brush up on your Excel skills- Excel Jumpstart: Jump headfirst into Microsoft Excel with this workshop by covering the basic functions and features, from learning to change the layout and formatting to doing basic formulas and math.
  • Refresh your Google knowledge- Going Further With Google: You've met Docs. You know Drive like the back of your hand. Now it is time to get acquainted with some of Google's more advanced features.  Get It From Google: A brief introduction to the organization of Google Drive and how to navigate between Google Apps.
  • Struggling to work from home, try some productivity challenges- Being the Most Productive You: Life can be overwhelming- find ways to lessen that stress by using your tech to its fullest. Discover how to manage schedules, create tasks, make to-dos, set reminders, multi-task, and collaborate.
  • Communication is difficult, but doing so via email and phone only can be even more of a challenge, take a quick dive into some common areas where we can all improve communication skills- Keep It Professional: Be at your professional best. This session will provide some tips and tricks for communicating in a professional setting that you can apply today. From email signatures to out of office messages, we’ll be exploring email best practices and the tools we use to communicate.
  • With open enrollment around the corner, learn some of the basics so you can make an educated decision when the time comes- What are My Benefits: Healthcare Edition: Co-pay? Deductible? HSA? Healthcare benefits can be tricky to navigate. With so many options, how can you be sure you have the coverage right for you? More importantly, are you taking full advantage of everything your plan has to offer? Join us for this session as we learn to be good healthcare consumers.
  • Missed the Supervisor Bootcamp series, watch it here
  • Watch or view all of HR's past training programming, including those of our guest hosts, here

3.  Other Training Opportunities

  • Be more proficient with these great Office and Gmail Tutorials, learn how to mail merge, create a graph, improve your Gmail skills, build a pivot table, all offered free!  Just click here for tons of content, easily watched and more easily understood!
  • Watch the Springfield College YouTube Channel for even more Office, Gmail, Google and Excel tips!

4.  Do the things HR has been asking you to do, but you just didn't have the time!

  • Update your emergency contact, address, phone number, EEO information, and other personal data in ADP through the portal.
  • Login to MyBlue through BlueCross BlueShield and your Health Equity account (here) to discover the wealth of resources, discounts and services available on your medical plan
  • Login to TIAA and update your beneficiaries.  And remember, markets fluctuate so don't stress too much about the number on the screen and think about the long haul!
  • Complete and submit (email is best) your Tuition Remission Forms, which are due May 1

5.  Know that working remotely is no easy task, both supervisors and employees have to change the way they work to make it work!  Here are a few helpful tips to make it work just a little better.

  • Don't get frustrated if your concentration gets bumped around a bit.
  • Set your schedule and stick to it.
  • Keep sensitive and private documents locked-up and out of sight as best as possible.
  • Avoid the pantry (this is hard), but stick to your normal eating schedule and at-work food routines.
  • Find a quiet and dedicated place to work, if possible, and establish your "office".
  • If safe to do so, take a quick walk several times per day and get fresh air throughout your new routine.
  • Keep the TV off or outside of earshot.
  • Dress for the part!  While wearing your PJs all day sounds good, it also keeps your mind in a different mode.
  • Your body can be trained for new normals, but an adjustment period is necessary.  Don't give up!
  • Engage with colleagues through chat (google hangouts), video (zoom), and the phone.  Email is good, but personal contact keeps the engagement feeling real.

6.  For Supervisors, start those performance evaluations!  Creating your notes and discussion points now will just make it all that much easier later. 

  • For helpful hints on how to deliver feedback, review the No Fear Feedback PPT here.
  • For forms, tutorials and guides to our performance management system, click here.

7.  Should you feel ill (unrelated to COVID-19) but are a bit nervous about venturing to the doctor's office right now, take advantage of Well-Connection, a.k.a., teladoc, a.k.a., doc-in-a-box, a.k.a., tele-medicine!  By using your phone, tablet or computer, connect with a real doctor who can help diagnose simple issues and get you back to good health without leaving your home. 

8.  Supervisor hints for telecommuting.

  • What work can telework?  There is no great answer, but supervisors are encouraged to find project related work and other helpful tasks that employees can do remotely. 
  • Now is the time to think creatively about projects and things that we never have time to complete while in the office, that employees could work on remotely. 
  • For some employees, working remotely will be a struggle, both in terms of technology use and the type of work they are used to doing, so check-in often and be a great resource, both as a colleague and a supervisor, calling your HR Partner if you have questions or concerns.
  • Establish clear expectations, and set the "new normal" for response time, emails and telephone calls
  • Be flexible.  If nothing else, these times teach us that flexibility is key!

9.  Meditate, stretch and find your center!  We are simply put, in strange times, so do all that you can to keep up your mental health.

  • During this stressful and challenging time, we invite you to take a break, re-center and join our online yoga and meditation classes, taught by our talented instructor, Liza Feldman. We will be offering these classes on a week-to-week basis, so please be on the lookout for weekly emails and updates. Below you'll find detailed information on the classes being offered, as well as how to access our classes via Zoom. Check your email for information about signing up!

10.  Document those processes and procedures!  Preparing for the inevitable retirement or departure of a colleague who is the only person alive who knows how to do X, is not a great feeling, so take the time this week to have staff help document all that they do.

  • Everyone prepares a flow chart of their processes and marks who does what, when and where.  Understanding how it all intersects is crucial.
  • Everyone then prepares their respective piece of the process
  • Merge those documents into one and there you have it. 
  • Keep it updated when technology or processes change, but in HR, we have documented over 60 individual processes and we will be showing our Wiki page at some upcoming training

11.  Use Google Hangouts, the chat feature in Gmail.

  • Click the 9-dot symbol in the top right of your Gmail screen
  • Click the chat bubble icon marked "Hangouts"
  • It should open a screen where you can then chat or use video conferencing.
  • Once you've done that, you can add the chat function to your Gmail screen and then use it to productively communicate in real time with colleagues. 

12.  Need Continuing Education Credits (CEUs) or Professional Development Credits (PDCs)

  • Many employees carry professional certifications that require ongoing development and education, take some time to view those webinars and get those credits!

13.  Etiquette on Conference Calls Matters, just follow these helpful tips to ensure your calls go well.

  • Sit upright and use good body language, it really does come through the phone.
  • Ensure you know where to find the best connection from wherever you are calling in.
  • Find the quietest location to make the call, away from distractions, pets and other people, especially if working with sensitive data.
  • Identify yourself whenever you speak and don't jump in over someone else.
  • If you're late, don't announce yourself. 
  • Use your Mute button!