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Maximizing Organizational Efficiency


UT Extension operates efficiently and effectively at all levels.

Outcome: Streamlined Performance Appraisal System

A streamlined performance appraisal system including a rubric for performance and criteria for county directors was developed jointly by UT and TSU.

The team was charged with simplifying reporting.

Team Chair: Joseph Donaldson

Committee Members: Hunter Isbell, Thomas Broyles, Troy Dugger, Beth Duncan, Tracy Hagan, Connie Heiskell, Mary Beth Henley, Martin Koon, Latif Lighari, Dallas Manning, Tyrone Miller, Gary Rodgers, Izetta Slade, Justin Thomas, John Toman, Anthony Tuggle, and Glenn Turner

A hallmark of UT Extension and TSU Extension is strong cooperation. In fact, more than one-third of Tennessee counties have both a UT and TSU Extension agent working collaboratively in joint UT-TSU Extension offices. All UT and TSU Extension agents use a one-stop reporting software, System for University Planning, Evaluation, and Reporting (SUPER). Despite this high level of cooperation, both UT and TSU have maintained separate performance appraisal forms. In October 2014, a team of eighteen UT and TSU personnel (Performance Appraisal Revision Committee) began work to revise the performance appraisal system for three job positions: Extension agents, Extension agents and county directors, and Extension area specialists. The committee described the overview of performance appraisal as well as the purpose, methods, findings, and recommendations for the revised performance appraisal system.

The team published two papers on the matter:

Outcome: Identified and Compiled Extension Policies and Procedures

Identified and compiled Extension policies and procedures in a formatted comprehensive, searchable website.

The team was charged with implementing clear, concise, and effective policies.

Team Chair: David Perrin

Committee Members: Lynn Brookins, Richard Buntin, Sharon Foy, Alan Galloway, Kelly Grant, Missy Kitts, Deb Welch, John Wilson, Brandi Berven, and Shirley Hastings

The committee compiled a list of policies, procedures, and unwritten rules, documented location for policies and procedures, identified relevant policies, and formatted a comprehensive and searchable internal website.

Strategies and Action Steps

Strategy: Eliminate barriers and simplify procedures to achieve greater efficiency.

Action Steps:

  • Review approval processes and adopt procedures that facilitate approval at the lowest level.
  • Establish consistent procedures and best practices statewide.
  • Conduct employee training on procedures and best practices.

Strategy: Simplify reporting.

Action Steps:

  • Identify mandatory reporting requirements.
  • Identify and eliminate unnecessary and duplicate reports.
  • Establish consistency in reporting statewide.

Strategy: Implement clear, concise, and effective policies.

Action Steps:

  • Implement policies to improve efficiency.
  • Provide policy training and references for all employees and volunteers.