The Chronicle of Higher Education's sixth annual Great Colleges to Work For survey reveals that Hardin-Simmons University continues to seize recognition as a great place to work in higher education. The results, released today in The Chronicle’s report on The Academic Workplace, are based on a survey of more than 44,000 employees at 300 colleges and universities.
Faculty, staff, and administrators across the nation responded to the 60-question survey regarding job satisfaction. Results show that less than a third of the colleges that chose to participate were ultimately designated by employees as a great place to work. Only 97 of the 300 institutions surveyed were recognized for specific best practices and policies.
“The institutions that the Great Colleges program recognizes provide innovative educational experiences while offering their employees outstanding workplace experiences – and we are eager to help readers learn more about these colleges,” says Liz McMillen, editor of The Chronicle of Higher Education.
“The Chronicle’s reporting shows that more colleges and universities are seeking ways to improve their workplaces. The ‘formula for success’ continues to evolve, yet there are certain common features among institutions that achieve significant levels of worker satisfaction. The Great Colleges to Work For program allows our readers to learn about the colleges that seem to be getting it right,” says McMillen.
HSU president, Dr. Lanny Hall, firmly puts the credit on the campus community. “Everyone at HSU helps to make this a great place to work,” he says. “It’s gratifying to know that our faculty and staff enjoy their careers and work to reflect that positivity to our students.
“We also work hard to make HSU a great place to attend. For the last two decades HSU’s tuition guarantee program has been well received. Our students enjoy having their tuition rate frozen at their freshman year level. When students arrive on campus, this value becomes clear as they experience upgraded residence halls, and upgraded dining and exercise facilities. We have also expanded our wireless and broadband technology so students can continue to enjoy the ever increasing wide range of online capabilities,” says Hall.
Human Resources director, John Snapp, says HSU excels in understanding the importance of family time for employees. “We have a number of policies in place that give our faculty and staff members the time and flexibility to manage their personal time with family. Additionally, HSU employees and their families can use cabins in Ruidoso, New Mexico, resort condominiums at Lake Travis near Austin, and the condos at Possum Kingdom Lake.”
Categories in the survey help measure satisfaction in the areas of collaborative governance; professional/career-development programs; teaching environment; compensation and benefits; facilities, workspaces, and security; work/life balance; confidence in senior leadership; supervisor or department-chair relationship; respect and appreciation; tenure clarity (four-year colleges only); and diversity.
Results are reported for small, medium, and large institutions, with Hardin-Simmons University included among the small universities (2,999 students or fewer).
To administer the survey and analyze the results, The Chronicle turned to ModernThink LLC, a strategic human capital consulting firm that has conducted numerous “Best Places to Work” programs, surveying hundreds of thousands of employees nationwide. The Great Colleges survey included a two-part assessment process: a survey administered to faculty, administrators, and professional support staff; and an institutional audit that captured demographics and workplace policies and practices from each institution.
Great Colleges to Work For is one of the largest and most respected workplace-recognition programs in the country.
In addition to the Great Colleges to Work For recognition, HSU has also been named “A Best in the West” university by The Princeton Review, ranks in the top tier of the U.S. News and World Report 2013 Edition of Best Colleges in the west, is recognized by GI Jobs magazine as a Military Friendly school, was named to The President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll, and is recognized by education professionals as a member of Colleges of Distinction.