The Employee Advisory Group

Fermilab Director Pier Oddone

We are seeking nominations for eight new members of the Employee Advisory Group. The EAG is very valuable to me and other managers at the laboratory in helping us understand the many issues related to our work environment and how to improve that environment through policy development. If you have insights, concerns and suggestions about Fermilab policies and programs that affect your workplace I encourage you to consider nominating yourself or a colleague that shares the same interest. The deadline for nominations is March 16.

The EAG is a direct pipeline from the many levels of the work environment to senior managers. The committee meets approximately once a month. The committee is regularly joined by several members of the senior management team: the laboratory director; deputy director; chief operating officer; head of the Workforce Development and Resources Section and the head of the Office of Communication. The laboratory benefits from the EAG’s formal recommendations that come after the EAG studies a topic, as well as the extensive discussion of the often complex issues. The discussions are guided by a facilitator from outside the laboratory.

The EAG is a relatively large group, currently consisting of 21 members who serve three-year terms. In composing the group we try to have representation from all of the different parts of the laboratory and from the many types of jobs in our organization. But we know that even a large group can’t represent all points of view, so EAG members are expected to communicate with their fellow employees about issues under consideration to expand the range of viewpoints represented in their advice to laboratory management.

We will often bring proposed policy changes to the EAG for discussion. Here the EAG acts almost as a pilot, thinking through what issues might arise in different parts of the laboratory. In these cases it provides advice not only on the policy but how to communicate any changes.

The committee has undertaken projects independently from particular management requests to understand issues that it considers important. Among others, it has studied performance evaluations; conducted an employee survey on management issues and posted and communicated the results; suggested improvements in internal communications; and suggested improvements to the new employee orientation process, career planning support, and access to employee policies and procedures.

In many small ways, as well as in very broad issues, the EAG has contributed to making our work environment better and has heighten our awareness of where further improvements are necessary. This is the first time since the EAG’s inception that members have finished their terms, and I want to thank those who are rotating out of the committee for their devoted work and look forward to welcoming the new members.