HR Update - FY 20 Issue 04
Issue Date: February 14, 2020
In This Issue
- Recruitment Initiative
- How to Read Your Paystub
- Town Hall for Biweekly Pay Coming Soon
- New Website for HR Enterprise Business Model
By Recruitment Services
The Division of Personnel & Labor Relations (DOP&LR) is excited to announce we are implementing a new Recruitment Initiative.
Nationally, the public sector is experiencing a hiring crisis. The State of Alaska (SOA) has not been immune to this as we continue to face recruitment and hiring challenges. There are several factors affecting this, including:
- an aging state workforce retiring;
- smaller pools of applicants to replace them;
- a historic low unemployment rate.
Recent research from the National Association of State Chief Administrators (NASCA) revealed while the number of government jobs positions has slightly increased, the number of public sector applicants has dropped by 19% since 2013 – creating an estimated “gap” of 30%. If this gap continues at the same pace, it will ultimately impact the quality of service provided by the State of Alaska. Therefore, it is critical to make SOA jobs more attractive.
Adding to the challenge is we continue to receive unfavorable feedback from applicants:
- Our recruitment process is too burdensom
- The job postings have become stale and don't list what is "in it for the applicant"
- The process from application to job offer takes too long
- Often, they never hear back from the SOA after submission of their application
To be proactive in addressing our recruitment and hiring challenges, DOP&LR is implementing the following changes:
New Job Bulletin Format
The job bulletin format has been redesigned to include public sector value propositions and highlight key attractions that applicants find appealing. Such as, the opportunity to learn and grow, professional career growth and mobility, job security, benefits package, meaningful work, and the ability to serve one’s community. The new format also includes brief descriptions for what the applicant will be doing, the work environment they can expect and who we are looking for. The new format is more job seeker focused.
We will no longer post job openings for positions range 13 or lower with a cover letter requirement. A detailed review showed the cover letter requirements are acting as a barrier for further consideration. On average most cover letters are requiring the applicant to address a minimum of ten, if not more, knowledge, skills, and abilities (KSAs) when the information can easily be asked in the supplemental questionnaire portion of the application. The feedback we hear from applicants is the cover letter requirements have become excessive and daunting for entry and journey level technical positions. The other bonus is the use of supplemental questions will help to streamline the process of reviewing applicants for interview.
Flexible Minimum Qualifications (MQs) Competency Based
The Classification section has begun using a new MQ format for professional level job classes. These MQs use a different standard than our typical practice and focus on competencies, however gained, not on specific experience education and experience. This new format requires the use of supplement questions to give the applicant the opportunity to provide detailed information on how they have obtained the equivalent competencies for the position. Please note: The MQs must be updated and revised first before you can apply this new flexible approach.
The DOP&LR is working on new procedures to begin piloting the acceptance of resumes in lieu of completing the entire state application. The initial pilot will apply to professional level job classes ranges 22 and higher which are posted under the all applicants scope of recruitment (out of state) and the vacancy is also advertised on one or more outside on-line job boards/websites such as, Indeed, LinkedIn, Careerbuilder.com, Monster.com, etc.
Hiring Manager Resources
In an effort to provide tools and resources to assist hiring managers with these changes, new guidance documents, worksheets and forms have been created and posted on DOP&LR’s Hiring Manager Resource page, including a Job Posting Worksheet, Hiring with Competencies guidance, and Competency Based MQ guidance. Also included on the site is a master list of competencies for hiring mangers to use when creating job postings. We encourage hiring managers to partner with agency HR recruitment staff who can assist you with posting your vacancy in the new format or with determining the position specific competencies.
The link to the Hiring Manager Resource page is: http://doa.alaska.gov/dop/workplace/hiringManagerResources/.
It is our hope that this initiative and these changes will have a positive impact towards attracting qualified applicants and making the State of Alaska an employer of choice.
How to Read Your Paystub
The Division of Finance has a document titled “How to Read Your Payroll Advice & Yearly W-2 Statement”, which can be found on their Payroll Reference Sheet & Matrices website here: https://doa.alaska.gov/dof/payroll/reference.html. In addition to this reference, it may be helpful to know what the deduction abbreviations stand for on your paystub. Below is a list of some of the most common paystub deduction abbreviations:
Pre-Tax Employee Deductions
|SBS MAND||State of Alaska’s supplemental annuity retirement benefits plan that replaced Social Security in 1980|
|PERS DB||SOA’s Public Employees Retirement System - Defined Benefits|
|PERS DC MAND||SOA’s Public Employees Retirement System - Defined Contributions|
|PERS VOL||PERS optional voluntary savings account|
|DEF COMP||Optional deferred compensation account|
|GGU HI BU||Health insurance provided by the ASEA Health Trust|
|GGU HFSA||Optional ASEA Health Flexible Spending Account|
|SEL BEN HLTH||AlaskaCare/Aetna provided health insurance|
|SEL BEN DENT||AlaskaCare/Moda Health dental insurance|
|SEL BEN VIS||AlaskaCare vision coverage insurance|
|LL HI BU||Health insurance provided by the LTC Health Trust|
|SBS OPT LIF||Select/Optional Life Insurance|
|SBS LIFE INS||Optional select life insurance benefit|
|SBS OPT ADD||Select benefits Accidental Death and Dismemberment (AD&D) insurance|
|SBS OPT STD||Select benefits optional Short-Term Disability benefit|
|SBS OPT LTD||Select benefits optional Long-Term Disability benefit|
|SBS OPT CRC||Select benefits optional Critical Illness supplemental insurance benefit|
Post Tax Employee Deductions
|EFT FIXED||Direct deposit flat amount|
|GGU DUES||ASEA union dues|
|KK DUES||APEA union dues|
|AA DUES UNLIM||PSEA union dues|
|GC DUES||ACOA union dues|
|LL DUES/FEES||LTC union dues and fees|
|ROTH 457||Optional Roth 457 contribution|
|SHARE DON||Optional SHARE campaign donation|
|FED TAX||Federal taxes|
|ADDL FED TAX||Additional flat amount towards federal taxes as authorized on the W-4 form|
|MEDICARE EE||Additional flat amount towards federal taxes as authorized on the W-4 form|
How to Find Leave Without Pay and Furlough Amounts
Leave without pay and furlough usage do not appear on the paystubs due to the fact that they are not an earnings or deduction type, but you can view this information through IRIS Employee Self Service (ESS). First, select the “My Info Tab” on the left-hand side of ESS, then select the “My Compensation” tab, and finally the “Issued Checks/Advices” tab. Now you’ll need to select the pay period in which you took furlough or leave without pay and highlight that line on the top portion of this screen. Scroll down to the “Pay Details” section and you’ll see the line reflecting furlough or leave without pay usage. You may need to click the Next button to see more lines of pay detail information.
Furlough usage in IRIS ESS will look something like this:
Leave without pay (LWOP) usage in IRIS ESS will look something like this:
How to Read the Earnings Section
The Pay Rate column under the Earnings section of your paystub reflects the pay rate used to calculate your hours worked for that pay period. It will either reflect your gross semi-monthly salary, or your gross hourly pay rate, depending upon if you’re paid a salaried or hourly rate.
If you’re paid a salary, then the total pay amount for your regular hours worked should equal your total gross salary. Your regular hours are all of the hours that makes up the total pay period hours, including regular holiday pay and leave used. Regular pay period hours for a 8:00 hour day range from 72:00 to 96:00 hours per pay period. Regardless of how many regularly scheduled hours there are in a pay period, as a salaried employee, you still only receive your full salary when you’re in full pay status. In the situation above, the total number of regular hours in this pay period was 96:00 and the employee received their full salary of $2,892.00 ($2,635.94 + $241.00 + $15.06 = $2,892.00). Had there been any leave without pay or furlough taken during this pay period, the total pay amount for all of the regularly scheduled hours would be less than the pay rate salary. You would then need to research the Issued Checks/Advices tab in IRIS ESS to determine how your salary and leave accrual were prorated.
If you have further questions about how to read your paystub, please contact the Employee Call Center by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 907-465-3009.
Town Hall for Biweekly Pay Coming Soon
Biweekly is set for a June 1st conversion. Final details are being wrapped up this week and you should expect to receive an invite for a townhall in the near future.
New Website for HR Enterprise Business Model
Division of Personnel & Labor Relations (DOP&LR) has set up a website to help provide information about the upcoming transition to a HR Enterprise Business Model. The new website can be found on the DOP&LR website at http://doa.alaska.gov/dop/directorsOffice/HREnterprise/.