Office of the Vice President for Global Communications

Monday, July 23, 2012

University leaders invest in two Voices of the Staff programs

University leadership has made another financial investment in Voices of the Staff, also known as VOICES. The executive officers recently approved funding for two VOICES initiatives.

Career Development Passport

The Career Development Passport is a 12-month pilot initiative with the goal of enhancing knowledge of career navigation strategies among employees.

As many as 900 employees from the Ann Arbor and Medical campuses will be able to participate, and each will receive a "Passport" to document their career/professional development journeys.

This one-time funding is in addition to support provided to maintain the Career Development Services website.

Biannual Best Practices Conference

VOICES received funding to host two bi-annual conferences focusing on sharing best practices that can help improve workplaces across all U-M campuses and assist the university in meeting its effectiveness and efficiency goals.

The conference will be modeled after the successful VOICES StaffWorks Conference, held in May 2011 and created by the VOICES Best Practices & Technology Team. Information about the first StaffWorks conference is available on the VOICES website.

"This is a resounding statement of support for U-M staff by our leadership," said Laurita Thomas, associate vice president for human resources. "These initiatives will help staff become more engaged by providing valuable opportunities for professional growth and knowledge-sharing. And the more engaged we are at work, the more we contribute to the greater mission of the university."

VOICES is a volunteer-based initiative that was launched in February 2005 to give staff, at all university campuses and the Health System, a stronger voice for developing and sharing ideas about the campus community topics that matter most to staff.

For more information about VOICES, please go to