Workplace Climate Survey FAQ

The College of Science is conducting a Workplace Climate Survey this fall. A confidential questionnaire will be administered to faculty, staff, postdocs and graduate students by the University of Michigan ADVANCE program. The results will be used to help ensure a positive, respectful, and inclusive workplace for all College employees.

1. What is the schedule for this process? When will the survey begin and close; when will the College get the results; when will those results be shared?

The survey will begin on September 15, 2016 and will continue for four weeks. The University of Michigan ADVANCE team will analyze the results and prepare a report for the College with a target time frame of early January, 2017. This report will be shared by Dean Ruiz in Spring, 2017.

2. What is the College of Science Workplace Climate Committee? How are people being chosen for this committee? How do I contact them?

A Workplace Climate Committee will be established with broad representation from across the College to identify, develop, and implement best practices for creating a positive and inclusive workplace climate within the College. Department Heads and Directors will be asked to nominate members of their units and other representatives outside of the College to serve on the committee. These nominations will be reviewed by Dean Ruiz, who will select final committee members. His objective is to have broad representation. The members of the committee and their contact information will be posted on this FAQ page when the committee has been assembled.

3. How is my identity protected by Michigan?

If the University of Arizona is sending the emails with the private URLs, can't the UA reverse engineer my identity? While the email link will be sent from a University of Arizona email account, the survey and associated data are stored on a server at the University of Michigan. No one at the University of Arizona has access to the data. Once a survey is submitted the unique link is no longer active and will not link to the survey responses.

4. Why aren't the results being collated at the departmental level?

To ensure confidentiality and to avoid small sample sizes for individual groups, the survey results will be analyzed at the level of the College only.

5. Is this in response to a specific incident? Why now?

The decision to assess the workplace climate is not a response to a specific incident, but developed from our interest in and dedication to maintaining and advancing an inclusive and supportive environment for faculty, staff and students within the College.

6. Why aren't undergraduate students being surveyed?

Undergraduate students are an important group in our community, but their experiences extend beyond the College on this campus to a far greater extent than the groups we intend to survey within the College. We will defer to University-level initiatives to assess the climate for undergraduate students campus-wide.

7. Will there be a town hall or other public discussion of the results? How will the College's interpretation of the results be communicated and when?

The University of Michigan will prepare a report to the Dean with their analysis of overall patterns in the data for each of the four surveys. This report will be shared with everyone in those categories early in Spring, 2017. An open town hall to discuss the results will be held soon after, and results of the survey will inform work of the Workplace Climate Committee that will address issues of workplace climate and make recommendations to the Dean.

If you have more questions or concerns about the survey, please contact:

Dr. Chris Impey
Associate Dean, College of Science

Dr. Tricia Serio 
Department Head, Molecular and Cellular Biology

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