University implementing new HR system

Ufirst to be fully implemented by 2018

The University Human Resources Department is working to implement Ufirst, a new human resources strategic design initiative that the University says will improve the employment experience at the University.

The new design is expected to be fully implemented by 2018 with incremental improvements over time.

A Design Advisory Council — consisting of faculty and staff from across the Academic Division and Health system — developed the model with the key tenets of providing a consistent recruiting experience, improving satisfaction through high-quality HR services, providing proactive support and engagement from HR service partners and reducing HR-related costs with a new operating model.

The new structure provides the HR department with support from administrators across the University community. This support comes in the form of Executive Sponsors, who will include participants from the College, Office of Health Affairs, Office of the Provost, Frank Batten School of Leadership and Curry School of Education.

The initiative includes a reorganization of the HR delivery structure, in hopes of making the model more efficient and streamlined, according to the Ufirst website.

Bryan Garey, interim vice president and chief human resources officer, said HR will look entirely different at the University in the coming years with this project.

“It’s an exciting effort that has many wonderful possibilities for better supporting our education, research, service and patient care mission,” Garey said.

The Ufirst community held its first event for HR professionals at the University Jan. 13. Over 100 people attended the event, which included a detailed overview of the new system and a forum for questions and feedback.

University Deputy Spokesperson Matt Charles said Ufirst leadership will continue to provide opportunities for evaluation.

“The University will continue to evaluate the Ufirst program’s success to ensure that it meets the needs of our employees,” Charles said in an email statement. “We are dedicated to making the employment experience at U.Va. an exceptional one.”

Dean Bob Pianta, chair of the University Leadership Council on Organizational Excellence and executive sponsor to Ufirst, said the initiative has garnered a positive response from faculty and staff.

“I’ve talked with numerous groups across the University, really through the last couple of years, ranging from deans to staff and faculty, and in each case, every group sees the importance of enhancing the quality and benefit of human resources for the University,” Pianta said.

Pianta said the initiative will have both short and long term benefits.

“If you think about how important our people are to the success of the University, the staff and faculty, human resources is an extraordinarily important function for the University,” Pianta said. “This initiative is really designed to elevate the importance and the quality and the positive impact of human resources University-wide.”

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