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Human Resources Newsletter

March 2014 HR Newsletter


Welcome to the March 2014 issue of the HR Newsletter. Full of useful information, we hope that you find that HR Newsletter and important source of information.

Please use the navigation on the right to quickly learn about:

  • 2013 Flexible Spending Claims deadlines
  • The Staff Personnel Policies Manual update
  • The Total Compensation Statement Online
  • Emergency Back-Up Care
  • Staff Appreciation, May 19-23
  • myBenefits for benefits information all year
  • The Fresh and Local CSA
  • The April Professional Development Calendar
  • RecycleMania
  • Results from the Staff Council Survey

Please let us know how we can make the newsletter even better by emailing us at


2013 Flexible Spending Accounts Claims Deadline

Human Resources reminds you that in accordance with the IRS' grace period extension, you still have time to submit claims against your 2013 Flexible Spending Account (FSA) balance for any eligible expense you incur from January 1, 2013 through March 15, 2014. The deadline for submitting claims for 2013 is Wednesday, April 30 at 11:59 p.m.

You may submit your claims via fax or online.

To submit claims by fax:

Fax your claim form toll-free to PayFlex at (866) 932-2567. You also may visit the myBenefits site to obtain a claim form.

To submit claims electronically:

Please visit the PayFlex (HealthHub) website at to submit your claims electronically; you will need to have an online account. To set up your online account, please see the HealthHub Quick Reference Guide.

Please contact Grace McKinnon at 202-885-3521 with any questions.

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HR Newsletter Archives

Read past issues of the Human Resources Newsletter

How to Contact Us

Human Resources
(202) 885-2591

PMP and AsuccessfulU Questions?

Follow @AUemployees on Twitter

TwitterWant to be in the KNOW? HR tweets news, information, and events daily regarding benefits, health & wellness, and training opportunities on @AUemployees.

Staff Personnel Policies Manual Has Been Updated

The Staff Personnel Policies Manual has been updated to reflect the current compensation structure that was implemented in 2013 as well as the policies that apply to the Performance Management Program (PMP) that is currently in its second year. To access the updated policy information, visit the University Policies page or click here.

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KNOW Your Total Compensation

Total Compensation Statements Now Available on myBenefits

Your compensation at American University goes beyond just your salary. If you are a full-time faculty or staff member, access your confidential, personalized total compensation statement on myBenefits. Your total compensation statement details the value of your 2013 cash compensation and benefits package. 

To view and print your confidential, online statement: 

  1. Log into the myAU portal.
  2. Select myBenefits under the Work@AU navigation.
  3. Click on the myBenefits button.
  4. In the myBenefits site, click on the "KNOW Your Total Compensation" button.
  5. On the KNOW Your Total Compensation page, click on the hyperlink, "View a printable version of your total compensation statement" in the right column under the Total Compensation Statement arrow.

Please note that the 2013 Total Compensation Statement is available exclusively online and a hard copy will not be mailed to your home. However, your statement will remain on myBenefits for you to access throughout the year.

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Bright Horizons Back-Up Care AdvantageRegister (in Advance) for Emergency Back-Up Dependent Care, a New Benefit Available to Full-time Faculty and Staff

AU is pleased to provide emergency dependent back-up care to full-time faculty and staff. The Bright Horizons® Back-Up Care Advantage Program® gives you access to the Back-Up Care Advantage network of child care centers and in-home care providers to assist when your regular care options for children, as well as adults, become unavailable.  

You can use the back-up care program for planned needs, such as caregiver vacations, school holidays or breaks, or if you are traveling for business and temporary assistance is needed. The program can also be used for unplanned events, such as school closings for inclement weather, a mildly-ill child or parent, or your dependent care provider quits unexpectedly.  

The Bright Horizon’s Back-Up Care Advantage Program offers several options for care including:

  • access to its national network of child care centers,
  • in-home child care, and
  • in-home care for yourself, spouse, or parent.

The program is partially funded by the university, resulting in lower costs for the services:

  • $15 per child, per day at a center based care facility, or $25 per day if you have more than one child attending the same facility in the same day, or
  • $6 per hour per caregiver for in-home care.
  • You can use back-up care for up to 15 days per year.


  • Complete the registration before you need to use the service. There is no cost to register, so register as soon as possible so that you can quickly make your reservations for care when you need it.
  • FYI. Sometimes additional documents are required by non-Bright Horizons centers.

This program is part of AU’s ongoing commitment to provide a comprehensive benefits package to help faculty and staff balance the demands of a busy job and home.

For more information please view the short video orientation on the myBenefits site. Detailed information, including a link to the Bright Horizons website, can be found under the work-life tab in myBenefits.

For questions, contact or call (202) 885-3400.

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Staff Appreciation Week Save the Date

Save the Date: Staff Appreciation Week, May 19 – 23

Be sure to take part in all the activities planned for American University’s annual Staff Appreciation Week from May 19 – 23. Staff Appreciation Week celebrates the contributions of AU’s staff with a week of events highlighting top performers, years of commitment, and individual works across campus.  

This year’s planned activities include the Cupcake Bake-Off, the WONK Wars photo scavenger hunt, a guided tour of AU’s arboretum and sustainability efforts, the invitation-only Years of Service & Performance Awards Luncheon and Twenty year Club Celebration, Trivia in the Tavern, Board Games on the Quad, annual volleyball tournament, the annual staff picnic, and more. 

For a schedule of all the planned events, visit the Staff Appreciation website. Also, follow all the activities on Twitter @AUappreciates.

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myBenefitsIs Your Year-Round Source for Benefits Information

Have you made use of all the features of Human Resources’ communications website, myBenefits? The site was designed specifically to create an improved user experience for faculty and staff on matters regarding their benefits and HR-related information. Throughout the year, new hires, faculty, and staff can utilize myBenefits to perform a variety of benefits-related functions, including:

  • Obtaining online enrollment forms for non-retirement plan benefits for new hires
  • Enrolling and making enrollment changes that will be sent electronically to the appropriate benefits vendors on a weekly basis, resulting in faster set-up and receipt of ID cards
  • Viewing and changing beneficiary designations for life insurance coverage
  • Viewing benefits, as well as associated employee and employer costs
  • Scanning and uploading all required supportive material (e.g., birth certificate, marriage certificate, domestic partner affidavit)
  • Accessing system 24 hours a day, seven days a week
In addition, the website also offers:
  • Highlights of all employee benefits offered by AU
  • Link to the Faculty Staff Benefits Manual
  • Benefits vendors’ information – website links, customer service numbers, group numbers, etc.
  • Database featuring benefits-related forms
  • Links to policy manuals
  • Link to open enrollment guide
  • Benefits enrollment deadlines

Where to find myBenefits on the myAU portalmyBenefits may be accessed by going to the myAU portal, and selecting the Benefits (My Benefits) tab from the Work@AU drop-down menu.

For more information, contact or call (202) 885-3400.

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AhealthyU Reminds You to Join the Fresh and Local CSA by April 15

Farm Fresh and Local CSA provides wholesome, biodynamically farmed foods that are harvested by hand for same day delivery. Their produce is chemical-free, GMO-free, and hormone-free.

Farm Fresh and Local CSA’s sustainable growing techniques allow them to offer a diverse offering of highly nutritious seasonal vegetables, fruits, and herbs at their peak of ripeness.

AhealthyUVisit to sign-up by April 15

  • $600 for 18 weeks
  • Delivery to AU
  • Each week yields 3-4 bushels of farm fresh produce

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Professional Development April Calendar

Professional Development April 2014

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RecycleMania Is Here

RecycleMania is a national inter-campus recycling competition in which more than 600 schools nationwide vie to become the nation’s top recycling campus by promoting their waste reduction activities.

Between now and March 29, schools will track and report their recycling and trash collection data each week and compete to see who can achieve the highest recycling rate. In 2012, American University placed first in the nation. Be sure to do your part to help AU regain its top ranking in 2014.

Staff are encouraged to do a bit of spring cleaning in their offices by collecting paper and any electronic waste (like CDs, cords, or batteries) for recycling.

For more information about RecycleMania and a full schedule of events visit

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Here's What You Said: Staff Council Survey Results

Last fall, more than 500 members of American University’s staff participated in the 2013-2014 Staff Council Survey to evaluate and comment about myriad issues concerning staff. Here are the results of the survey based on your responses:

  • 61 percent of those surveyed would like to see the Council perform more staff community building activities and events;
  • 54 percent of staff would like to see Staff Council offer more information sessions on issues concerning staff;
  • 44 percent noted that they prefer the Council to offer more educational opportunities; and
  • 39 percent cited that the Staff Council’s fall luncheon was their favorite activity while 37.4 percent cite its service activities as its best activities.

Staff Council currently is reviewing the survey and creating an action plan. More details for plans going forward are expected to be revealed at the Staff Council Town Hall in the spring.

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