Evaluation of Professional Employees

SUNY Policies of the Board of Trustees – (Article XII, Title C, Section 4)


  • Each professional employee in the Professional Services Negotiating Unit shall have his or her performance evaluated by the employee’s immediate supervisor formally, in writing, once each year during the term of appointment and as changing conditions warrant, except where the employee is serving a final year in the University following notice of nonrenewal. Such evaluation shall be based on a performance program determined by the immediate supervisor after consultation with the employee, a copy of which shall be given to the employee.
  • Performance shall be characterized, in summary, as either satisfactory or unsatisfactory. A professional employee whose performance is characterized as “unsatisfactory” in a written report resulting from a formal evaluation may seek review of such report by the appropriate professional staff committee established for such purpose.

Evaluation Policy

It shall be the policy of the University to evaluate the performance of all professional employees in the Professional Services Negotiating Unit as hereinafter provided.

Purposes of Evaluation

  • Provide the college president with consultation in making a decision to renew, or non-renew, a professional employee's appointment;
  • Provide a base for performance improvement;
  • Serve as a guide to re-evaluate job functions;
  • Provide the college president with consultation in a decision as to promotions and discretionary salary increases;
  • Provide a basis for career growth.

Evaluation Procedure

Evaluation is a continuing process carried out on a daily basis. A formal evaluation should be the expression of this ongoing process.


Each immediate supervisor shall be responsible for evaluating the performance of professional employees that work at the supervisor's direction. Such performance evaluations shall be conducted for the purposes described above and at regular intervals as specified below. The college president, or designee, shall provide written notice of any change in the immediate supervisor within 30 calendar days of the change.


The immediate supervisor shall consult with new employee concerning a performance program and the system of evaluation within the first month of the initial appointment. The performance program shall be established within 15 days from the date of consultation.

If, as part of the informal ongoing evaluation process, the immediate supervisor identifies a continuing need for improvement in the employee's performance, it is the responsibility of the immediate supervisor to discuss this with the employee without delay, and with specific suggestions for improvement.

Initial Consultation

The evaluation process shall begin with a discussion between the immediate supervisor and professional employee concerning the following:

  • The nature of the professional employee's duties and responsibilities;
  • Supervisory relationships;
  • Functional relationships;
  • Immediate and long-term objectives;
  • Criteria for evaluating achievement of objectives;
  • Determination of Objectives and Criteria.

Consistent with the professional employee's duties and responsibilities, as well as the employee's role in contributing to the aims of the University, the immediate supervisor, after consultation with the professional employee, shall determine the objectives to be achieved during the evaluation period.

Appropriate criteria for evaluating the degree to which objectives are met shall be determined in the same fashion.

As they relate to the particular duties, responsibilities, and objectives to which the professional employee is assigned, the following criteria, where applicable, should be among those on which the evaluation is based:

  • Effectiveness in performance - as demonstrated, for example, by success in carrying out assigned duties and responsibilities, efficiency, productivity and relationship with colleagues.
  • Mastery of Specialization - as demonstrated, for example, by degrees, licenses, honors, awards, and reputation in professional field.
  • Professional ability - as demonstrated, for example, by invention or innovation in professional, scientific, administrative, or technical areas; i.e., development or refinement of programs, methods, procedures, or apparatus.
  • Effectiveness in university service - as demonstrated, for example, by such things as successful committee work, participation in local campus and University governance, and involvement in campus-related or University- related student or community activities.
  • Continuing growth - as demonstrated, for example, by continuing education, participation in professional organizations, enrollment in training programs, research, improved job performance and increased duties and responsibilities.

Consultation with Secondary Sources

  • Secondary sources are agencies, offices, or individuals which will be involved with the performance of the employee and may affect the employee's ability to achieve the stated objectives.
  • The immediate supervisor, after consultation with the professional employee, shall identify in the written performance program the secondary sources to be consulted as part of the evaluation process and the relationship between each secondary source and the professional employee.
    • The results of discussions with the professional employee, in accordance with provision of (3) through (5) above, shall be reduced to writing by the immediate supervisor and shall constitute the performance program on which formal evaluation for the ensuing evaluation period will be based.
    • Copies of this program, signed and dated by the professional employee and the immediate supervisor, shall be distributed to the professional employee, the evaluator's supervisor and a copy shall be placed in the professional employee's personnel file. If the supervisor and the employee do not concur on the performance program, the employee has the right to attach a statement to the performance program within 10 working days from receipt.

Modification of the Performance Program

As circumstances warrant, the immediate supervisor and the professional employee shall meet to review the appropriateness of elements of the performance program. Modifications in the performance program by the immediate supervisor shall be  specified in writing commensurate with provisions of (3) through (6) above.

Formal Evaluation

Formal evaluation shall be based upon the professional employee's performance program, modified as appropriate to reflect changed circumstances.

The immediate supervisor shall prepare a preliminary evaluation report and a new performance program. All evaluations shall include a summary of information from the secondary sources identified in the performance program. Commendable performance and/or areas in need of improvement may be identified. The preliminary report shall include a summary characterization of such employee's performance as "satisfactory" or "unsatisfactory." When appropriate, the report shall contain recommendations relating to: renewal or non-renewal of the professional employee's appointment; promotion; discretionary salary increase; or other actions affecting the employment status of the professional employee. In any event, the employee shall receive the recommendation made by the immediate supervisor pertaining to reappointment no later than 45 calendar days prior to the date upon which notice of non-renewal is due.

The immediate supervisor and the professional employee shall meet to discuss the preliminary evaluation and a new performance program. The extent to which information from secondary sources has influenced the evaluation report shall be reviewed with the employee during this discussion. If an evaluation is characterized as "unsatisfactory," the basis for this characterization shall also be a part of this discussion.

Commensurate with the provision of (3) through (7) above and prior to concluding the discussion, the immediate supervisor and the professional employee shall discuss a new performance program.

The immediate supervisor shall prepare a final written evaluation report, which shall include a summary characterization of such employee's performance, any appropriate recommendations, and to which a new performance program shall be attached.

Based upon the evaluation of the professional employee in relation to their performance program, and based upon information obtained during discussion with the employee in accordance with (b) through (d) above,

The employee's signature on the final evaluation report signifies only that the employee has received and discussed it with the immediate supervisor, and does not represent agreement or disagreement with the evaluation.

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