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Penn State University Libraries

Policies and Guidelines

HUMAN RESOURCES

Guideline UL-HRG04 Training/Professional Development Requests

Contents:

  • Purpose
  • Background
  • Employee Procedures
  • Guidelines for Supervisors
  • Supervisor Procedures
  • Travel
  • Probationary Employees
  • Cross References

    

PURPOSE:

To outline the Libraries’ procedures and guidelines that both employees and supervisors should follow when requesting release time from work and funds from the Libraries Training Budget.

BACKGROUND:

The Libraries’ training/professional development funds are budgeted to provide opportunities for Libraries’ employees to increase their skills and abilities in the workplace. Training funds may be expended to cover the cost of registrations for individuals or groups to participate in training/professional development including (but not limited to):

  • HRDC or ITS courses offered at the University
  • Seminars
  • Online tutorials
  • Professional meetings/conferences
  • Teleconferences
  • Webcasts
  • Workshops

Professional development and training should support the Libraries’ goals and objectives as outlined in the Strategic Plan and should directly relate to the individual’s job duties or professional development goals set up by the supervisor in conjunction with the employee for the coming year.

EMPLOYEE PROCEDURES:

  1. The employee should fill out the Libraries’ “Training/Professional Development Approval for Release Time” form and submit to the supervisor BEFORE registering for any training or professional development programs. If approved, the supervisor will forward the form to Libraries Human Resources.
  2. Once form is received by LHR, both the training participant and supervisor will be notified with approval and registration instructions.
  3. If training should be canceled by the provider, the employee must notify the supervisor and LHR to ensure that prepaid charges can be recovered.

GUIDELINES FOR SUPERVISORS:

Before approving any request, supervisors should consider:

  1. Whether the request directly relates to the individual’s job duties or professional development goals, and
  2. The current departmental workload so that other members of the staff are not overburdened.

SUPERVISOR PROCEDURES:

  1. If funding from the Libraries Training Budget is being requested to cover the cost of registration, the supervisor should sign the request form and forward to LHR for approval. If no funding is needed, the supervisor should retain the form for their records. 
  2. The supervisor should notify their department head of employees participating in training programs that require considerable time commitment; e.g., intensive programs such as Mastering Supervision. 
  3. Once form is received by Libraries Human Resources, both the training participant and supervisor will be notified with approval and registration instructions.

TRAVEL:

Funds to support travel expenses will not be paid for by the Libraries Training Budget. If travel is required to participate in the training/professional development activity, the employee must also fill out the Travel Request Form Request resource in an alternative format and submit it well in advance of the event if reimbursement is expected.

PROBATIONARY EMPLOYEES:

New employees should already possess necessary core skills needed to accomplish primary job tasks; therefore supervisors should not approve requests for training/professional development within the new hire probationary period unless it pertains directly to or will enhance the training that the supervisor is providing for the new employee. An example of this could be classes on diversity or CQI.

CROSS REFERENCES:

Travel Request Form

Guideline UL-TRG01 Requests for Travel

Training/Professional Development Approval for Release Time Form
Request resource in an alternative format

Effective Date: April 2010
Date Approved: April 12, 2010 (Dean's Library Council)

Revision History (and effective dates):

  • April 12, 2010 – New guideline

Last Review Date:  April 2010