40.011: Employee Recognition Awards
|Approved on February 17, 2005||Signatures and dates
on archival copy
|James E. Kemper|
Assistant V.P. for Administration
for Human Resources
|Herman ("Butch") Hill, Chair
Policy and Procedure Review Committee
Interim Vice President for Finance and Administration
- This policy contains guidelines for providing employee awards at the department level, as incentives or as recognition of an employee's one-time, exceptional achievement.
I. Types of Awards: Allowable and Not Allowable
- Incentive Programs: Employee awards may be offered to provide incentives to measurably increase:
- Productivity (work quality and or quantity)
- General employee morale or health.
All such programs or events must be monitored for results, and the program, or event sponsorship, should be continued, adjusted, or terminated as indicated. To be renewed, on-going incentive programs or events must demonstrate measurable positive results within 12 months of inception or occurrence.
- Recognition of extraordinary performance or achievement: Employee awards may be offered to provide after-the-fact reward for performance or achievement that is outside the bounds of what is ordinarily expected in the position, in these three areas:
- Successful cost savings suggestions or effort
- Successful one time project or accomplishment
- Exceptional service - performance above and beyond the call of duty
B. Not Allowable
- Compensation for the permanent assignment of continuing departmental duties: Compensation for continuing duties cannot be addressed through this recognition award policy. If an employee's duties have been permanently altered to include higher level duties, contact the University Human Resource Compensation Office, to determine if a position upgrade, or other compensation option, is indicated.
- Compensation for the temporary assignment of pre-existing departmental duties: Compensation for a temporary assignment that is not related to a one-time-project, but instead involves temporarily doing higher level duties (e.g., to cover for an open position during a lengthy search), cannot be addressed through this policy. Contact University Human Resources Compensation Office to determine if a temporary position upgrade, or other compensation option, is indicated.
- Compensation for extra hours or overload duties: Do not submit a request for an employee recognition award based on overtime worked for standard or additional duties performed. Contact University Human Resources Compensation Office to learn about overtime, overload, and additional compensation options.
- Recognition of a holiday or personal event: Employee Awards cannot be given in recognition of a personal occasion or event (e.g., a birthday or a personal accomplishment) or a holiday (e.g., Christmas). See the Finance Division's Gift-buying Guidelines at http://www.ohio.edu/finance/customercare/faq.cfm for further details.
II. Methods of Reward
- Award may be via cash, gift, or gift certificate, according to the procedures outlined below.
III. Dollar Amount Considerations
- Awards to a single employee may not exceed a total of $1,000 (gross) in value, per employee, per fiscal year.
B. Taxability Issues
- Cash awards over $25 (gross) per calendar year, per employee, and gifts with a value that exceeds $100 (gross) per calendar year, per employee, are considered taxable income. Single cash awards with a value of $25 (gross) or less per calendar year, or gifts with a value of $100 or less per calendar year, per employee, are not taxable, and are not subject to the same procedural restrictions as transactions over those amounts. See Procedures, Subsection III, below, for details.
C. All Awards
- All employee award purchases, regardless of dollar amount, must have a business purpose, and are subject to the policy restrictions above, and to all University purchasing and expense policies.
- All University employees are eligible for awards as described in this policy, including student employees.
V. Authorizations and Audits
- The Recognition Form Appendix A and the Employee Awards Request Form (EARF) require authorization by the direct supervisor and the planning unit head, and are then forwarded to the Chief Compensation Officer, University Human Resources, for approval and submission to Payroll for processing.
(See Procedures, Subsection I, below, for further information about these forms.)
Requests will be audited by University Human Resources. Requests not in compliance with this policy will not be processed for payment.
P-card transactions are subject to on-screen audit by University Human Resources. P-card statements, with proper forms attached, are subject to regular on-site audit. P-card purchases not in compliance with this policy will require refund.
All employee recognition awards, programs, or events are subject to audit, at any time, by University Human Resources, the Finance Division, the Internal Audit Office, or external auditors from the state or federal government.
I. Establishing a Departmental or Planning Unit Incentive Program
- In order to understand the authorizations and information you will need to process the award, familiarize yourself with the Recognition Form Appendix A and the Employee Award Request Form (EARF). Download and study both forms prior to setting up a program or event, or making the award.
- Establish a goal or objective(s) and determine the means by which you will measure results.
- Using Recognition Form Appendix A, determine the expected expenditure per award and the criteria used for selecting awardees. Describe the selection process, rules, and parameters of your program.
- Communicate the program to all involved in advance of beginning the program.
- Provide the award using the options detailed in Subsection III, below.
- Follow up regularly to measure the success of the program. Incentive programs or events should demonstrate measurable positive results within 12 months of inception or occurrence.
- Keep detailed records of all expenses, results and awards.
II. Offering "after-the-fact" Awards to Teams or Individuals for Performance or Achievement
- Within the dollar limits shown above (Policy, Subsection III), determine the amount of the award. Appendix A forms are not required for this category of award.
- Provide the award using the options detailed in Subsection III, below.
- Track all awards in your area to ensure that taxable income limit guidelines (Subsection III) are being followed, and that requests do not exceed a total of $1,000 (gross) per fiscal year, per employee.
III. Providing the Payment or Gift
- Cash awards: If the award is cash, an EARF must be completed, signed by the awardee, authorized by the direct supervisor and the planning unit head, then forwarded to the Chief Compensation Officer, University Human Resources, for approval. UHR will forward to Payroll for processing.
If the award is for an Incentive Program, attach a copy of Recognition Form Appendix A.
If the cash award represents an award of over $25 per calendar year, per employee, the award is taxable income.
- Gifts: If the award represents an award with a value of over $100 per year, per employee, the award is taxable income. Whenever possible, use your p-card to purchase these items. Attach a signed, completed EARF, along with itemized receipt(s), to your p-card statement for filing. Provide the Form # and the information requested on the EARF in the P-card system NOTES screen.
To request reimbursement for an out-of-pocket expense, attach the EARF and all receipts to a Direct Payment form.
To request a Purchase Order to a supplier, fill out a Requisition, and attach the EARF. Submit all forms to Payroll.
- Cash awards: If the award is cash, complete and submit an EARF to the Chief Compensation Officer, University Human Resources, for approval and submission to Payroll for processing.
If the cash award represents an award of less than $25 per calendar year, per employee, the award is non-taxable income.
- Gift awards: If the award represents an award of $100 or less, per employee, per calendar year, no EARF is needed.
Whenever possible, use your p-card to purchase these items. Attach itemized receipts to the p-card statement. In the P-card system NOTES screen, provide a brief explanation of the award, in keeping with the guidelines in Policy, Subsection I, above.
For out of pocket reimbursement, use a Direct Payment form. To request a Purchase Order, use a Requisition. In the body of the form, provide a brief explanation of the award, in keeping with the guidelines in Policy, Subsection I, above. Submit forms to Procurement Services.
C. All Awards
- Use the following natural account codes when entering departmental account numbers in the P-card system or on the relevant forms:
- 195000 - Employee awards, cash only, greater than $25
- 195100 - Employee awards, cash only, less than or equal to $25
- 766000 - Employee awards, gifts
Be aware that in regard to all the taxable income guidelines outlined in this policy, gift certificates that are easily converted to cash are considered cash awards.
IV. Documentation and Substantiation
- Retain all records for the current fiscal year and for the three prior fiscal years. Records include program or event descriptions, evidence of the measurement of results for incentive oriented programs or events, all Recognition Form Appendix A and EARF forms, as appropriate, copies of invoices or receipts, p-card statements, etc.
- Proposed revisions of this policy should be reviewed by:
- Policy and Procedure Review Committee
- Compensation Manager
- Payroll Manager
- Director of Procurement Services
- The following forms are specific to this policy:
- The "Employee Recognition Policy Appendix A" form is available from University Human Resources, or on-line as a Word document, linked from http://www.ohio.edu/hr/forms/index.cfm#e.
- The "Employee Awards Request" form is available from University Human Resources or on-line as an Excel file, linked from http://www.ohio.edu/hr/forms/index.cfm#e.
- The "Direct Payment" form is available on-line as a Microsoft Excel file, from http://www.ohio.edu/finance/procuretopay/forms.cfm (you may need to scroll down).
- The "Requisition" form is available on-line as a Microsoft Excel file, from http://www.ohio.edu/finance/procuretopay/forms.cfm (you may need to scroll down).
Copyright © 2012 Ohio University. All Rights Reserved.
Dick Piccard revised this file (http://www.ohio.edu/policy/40-011.html) on May 13, 2013.
Please E-mail any comments or suggestions to "firstname.lastname@example.org".