Revised October 1, 2008


Since 1945, classified employees of the State of Colorado have been paid under a
grade and step system where salaries were adjusted based on prevailing wages as
determined by a salary survey, with merit increases given based on longevity and
satisfactory job performance. During the 1996 legislative session, HB 96-1262 (CPP)
became law and mandated changes to the way classified employees receive pay
increases. In 1999, CPP was repealed because of the following concerns: cost
neutrality, the plan was perceived as too complicated, fairness and equity, and the
perception that too much latitude was given to departments and higher education

The Department of Personnel suggested an alternative approach that is based on a
system of performance evaluation. This approach was approved under SB 00-211. As
part of SB 00-211, a performance plan needed to meet certain criteria. Subsequent
legislation has modified the criteria. C.R.S. 25-50-104(c) II provides:

• A system that is simple and understandable to employees in the state personnel
• A system developed with input from employees in the state personnel system,
managers, and other affected parties,
• Emphasizes planning, management, and evaluation of employee performance, and
• Includes uniform and consistent guidelines for all state departments and institutions
of higher education.
• Prohibits a forced distribution of performance ratings; and
• Authorizes individual and group performance awards.

In response to the initial legislation and in preparation for this historical change, the
Colorado School of Mine’s (CSM) Performance Management Steering Committee was
established in the fall of 1999. The Committee’s initial role and responsibility was to
guide and advise the administration in the development and implementation of the
School’s Performance Pay Program. The original members of the Steering Committee
were: Bob Baldwin, Department of Chemical Engineering and Petroleum Refining; Tim
Cake, Plant Facilities; Carolyn Giarratano, Office of Financial Aid; Teresa Hall, Plant
Facilities; Barby Halliday, Division of Engineering; Mimi Martin, Metallurgy Department;
Eric Scarbro, Information Services; Marilyn Schwinger, Geology Department; and, Bob
Slavik, Plant Facilities. The Committee was led and coordinated by Debby Page Lane,


then Director of Human Resources, and staffed by members of the CSM Human
Resource Office.

This Committee developed CSM’s Performance Pay Program, which consists of three
components: performance management, performance-based pay, and dispute
resolution. These components are described in detail below.

Subsequent to the development of the original Performance Pay Program, changes in
state personnel rules caused revisions to some components of the Performance Pay
Program to be effective for the performance management cycle beginning April 1, 2007.
Further changes occurred to the plan after CSM gained some experience with the
state’s three tier performance evaluation rating system. This revised Performance Pay
Program contains those revisions.


Performance management is a business tool to assist organizations, as well as
individuals, in identifying their goals and objectives.

Performance management is a fluid process built on open, ongoing
communication in order to build trust and develop a work environment that
focuses on continuous improvement and productivity.

Training is a key component to a successful performance management system.

A performance management system should provide a consistent and flexible
framework for aligning individual contributions to work unit objectives and
strengthening the link between performance and rewards.

There shall be collaboration and communication during all phases of the
performance management process.

Employees at all levels share responsibility and are accountable for the success
of a performance management system.

Managers, supervisors, and employees must evaluate and clearly define what
needs to be accomplished and how it will be done. These “what” and “how”
objectives are interdependent.



The Colorado School of Mines, in response to Senate Bill 00-211, developed the initial
performance pay program to be implemented as of July 1, 2001. This version, in
compliance with subsequent legislative and rules changes, was effective with the


performance cycle beginning April 1, 2005. This plan was created in accordance with
the parameters set by the Colorado Department of Personnel and as directed by the
State Director of Personnel.

CSM’s Performance Management process includes planning, coaching and feedback,
progress review, and evaluation. The process is used throughout the year to enhance
employee performance, recognize the employee’s contributions to the institution, and to
appropriately determine annual performance awards.

CSM’s Performance cycle is from April 1 to March 31. Supervisors must complete and
implement plans for all permanent classified employees between April 1 and April 30.
New employees must have a performance plan established within 30 days of the date of

The supervisor and employee must meet for an initial planning session and jointly
establish the performance plan. If the immediate supervisor fails to establish a timely
performance plan, the next level supervisor or reviewer is expected to develop the plan.
If the second level supervisor or reviewer fails to develop a plan in a timely manner, the
reviewer’s supervisor (up to the Vice President level) is responsible for completing the
plan as required by law.


Performance management relies heavily on continuous coaching and feedback.
Therefore, each supervisor is required to complete a written progress review for all
permanent classified employees not later than October of each year.

A written performance evaluation for permanent classified employees shall be submitted
to the CSM Office of Human Resources no later than the last working day in March of
each year. The CSM Office of Human Resources will notify supervisors who fail to
meet the March deadline granting those supervisors a 30-day grace period within which
to comply. A copy of this notification will be submitted to the second level supervisor.

If the supervisor fails to comply within the grace period, CSM will invoke the State
Personnel Director’s Procedure which calls for sanctions to be applied:

Designated raters shall be evaluated on their performance management and
evaluation of employees. Absent extraordinary circumstances, failure to plan
and evaluate in accordance with the department’s established timelines results in
a corrective action and ineligibility for an annual performance award. If the
individual performance plan or evaluation is not completed within 30 days of the


corrective action, the designated rater shall be disciplinarily suspended in
increments of one workday following the pre-disciplinary meeting.

and/or, Colorado Revised Statute 24-50-104 (c.5) (II), which states:

“A supervisor, including a supervisory state employee not within the state
personnel system, who does not evaluate subordinate employees in the state
personnel system as required by this paragraph (c.5) on at least an annual basis
shall be suspended from work without pay for a period of not less than one
workday. The provisions of this subparagraph (II) shall only apply to supervisors
who are state employees.”

The Department of Personnel system parameters provide that if the supervisor does not
provide an evaluation for the employee, the next level supervisor, or reviewer is
required to provide the evaluation. If the second level supervisor or reviewer fails to
provide the employee with a performance evaluation, the reviewer’s supervisor (up to
the Vice President level) is responsible for completing the evaluation as required by law.

Supervision/People Management will be a factor in the performance plan for all
classified supervisors. This factor measures and evaluates the effectiveness of the
supervisor’s use of performance management with their employees. It is suggested that
exempt supervisors have this element incorporated into their evaluation process.

Statewide uniform core competencies are to be included in each agency’s performance
pay program. These five competencies must be incorporated into every employee’s
performance plan and must be considered during every employee’s evaluation. The
Core Competencies include Accountability, Communication, Interpersonal Relations,
Job Knowledge, and Customer Service. Unique competencies may be identified for
each position, but all classified employees shall be evaluated on the five statewide
uniform competencies.

There shall be three levels of ratings to be used for performance evaluations: Needs
Improvement, Meets Expectations, and Exceptional Performer. Narrative
documentation shall be provided for each factor and written justification must support
the overall rating.


Training is a critical component to successful performance management and, in
recognition that people have different learning styles and needs, the Colorado School of
Mines will adopt different methods and make multiple opportunities available to its
employees for the implementation of CSM’s Performance Pay Program.

Since the inception of the Performance Pay Program, several forums have been held to
advise employees of changes, seek input, and to allow the exchange of information
regarding a performance pay system. In addition, ongoing training has been offered to


supervisors and employees each year. CSM will continue to use these methods of

Each employee and supervisor shall receive training in performance management.
Training sessions will be offered on multiple occasions to accommodate the various
work schedules. Additional training shall be offered, as well as optional specialized
training on specific areas as identified or requested. This training will focus on all
aspects of performance management. One-on-one training sessions and consultations
will be made available throughout the year for new supervisors and employees, as well
as for current supervisors and employees who need and/or want a “refresher.”

Each employee and supervisor shall be given access to the CSM Performance
Management Program, the Evaluation Form, and a CSM Performance Management
User’s Guide (these may be provided through electronic means or through web link
access). The User’s Guide will outline the procedures for performance planning,
coaching and feedback, and the evaluation process. Managers and employees will find
the necessary forms and general examples in the User’s Guide. Electronic information
will be available through campus notices, the campus email system, and on the CSM
Human Resources Home Page. New classified employees or supervisors will be
provided access instructions to the CSM Performance Management Program and the
CSM Performance Management Users Guide during their new employee orientation.
The CSM Human Resource staff shall be available to provide small group and one-on-
one training as needed or requested.


The evaluation cycle for all classified employees at the Colorado School of Mines is
from April 1 through March 31. A performance plan must be created for new employees
within 30 days of the date of employment. New employees must attend a general
Performance Management training program as soon as possible after employment and,
preferably, before the performance planning is completed.

Employees who have received promotions, or have been assigned different duties,
must have their performance plans modified as soon as possible after the change of
duties. An employee who transfers from another state agency should be treated as a
‘new’ employee, and a performance plan must be created as outlined above.


CSM Performance Pay Program revolves around identifying and planning a set of
goals, objectives, and associated performance standards for individual employees.
Goals and objectives are written statements of expected results. They tell how well a
job responsibility (delineated in the PDQ) and/or competency is to be accomplished in
order to meet expectations. When written effectively, they are challenging, attainable,
observable and measurable. Individual, department, and school goals should be linked
to each other. Goals and objectives should be specific and defined in terms of results
that can be measured to the extent possible. However, they should also be flexible and
changed as conditions warrant. The Office of Human Resources can assist supervisors


in writing goals and objectives as well as provide access to the state’s performance
management on-line library.

CSM has a Strategic Plan that provides direction and institutional priorities toward which
each CSM department’s, and by extension each employee’s, activities should be
oriented. Departments are strongly encouraged to develop departmental goals and
objectives and to align individual employee goals, objectives and performance plan with
these departmental priorities.

Goals and objectives are written to achieve five basic outcomes: to complete routine
assignments; to resolve identified problems; to support innovation; to encourage
professional development; and, to align with institutional and departmental goals and
objectives. Examples of developing goals and objectives are found in the CSM
Performance Management Users Guide.

Standards are statements that describe how well results and outcomes are achieved.
They typically include elements of time, quality, or quantity. Well written standards help
assure that supervisors and employees will judge performance consistently and will help
reduce the incidence of disagreements that can lead to disputes.


Performance Planning Steps

Supervisor and employee review

PDQ together

Is the PDQ a
Revise PDQ and send

complete and
revised copy to CSM

accurate job
Human Resource



Identify the goals,


measurement methods,

and standards

Document the goals and

objectives in the Plan, and

describe measurement

methods of progress and

Identify critical skills needed

for success and write
employee development

objectives as required

Write the Overall
Performance standard

Supervisor and

employee initial plan, the
employee gets a copy,

and file original in

Supervisor’s files.



Coaching and feedback are essential components of a successful performance
management system. Coaching should be used and feedback provided on a
continuous basis throughout the evaluation cycle. While the manager/supervisor is
responsible for providing performance feedback and coaching, the individual employee
is responsible for actively soliciting feedback and using the data to improve
performance. A highly effective manager will regularly provide feedback and coaching,
but an employee can still solicit assistance and eliminate potential problems by initiating
a coaching session with the supervisor.

Just as the manager/supervisor is responsible for providing feedback and for revising
the performance plan as appropriate, the employee also has an obligation to
communicate with the supervisor, identify training needs, and provide follow-up to
achieve identified objectives.


Performance management relies heavily on continuous feedback and communication.
Therefore, each supervisor shall complete a written progress review for all permanent
classified employees not later than October for each evaluation cycle.


The evaluation elements within an employee’s performance plan and evaluation may be
qualitative or quantitative. Depending on the performance element, a set amount of
production or output as defined numerically may be established to determine the level of
performance. Or, for performance elements that cannot be easily quantified, the level of
performance may be determined by qualitative measures, generally described by the
use of examples and adjectives to model intended behaviors.

The purposes of the evaluation process are to provide information important to the
planning process; assess the employee’s performance; provide a basis for pay
adjustments; allocate time for communication, feedback, and coaching; and identify
training and development needs for employees. If done properly, the evaluation will
provide a detailed and accurate picture of the employee’s performance. Employees,
supervisors, and managers will be trained in the performance evaluation process as
outlined in communication and training section.

The evaluation cycle for all classified employees at the Colorado School of Mines is
from April 1 through March 31. Prior to completing and delivering a performance
evaluation to a classified employee, the supervisor is required to discuss the evaluation
with the reviewer. It is important for consistency in evaluation ratings across the
campus, that reviewers have the opportunity to assure that supervisors are applying
standards fairly among employees.

When a written performance evaluation for permanent classified employees is
completed (delivered, signed by the supervisor, employee and reviewer), it shall be


submitted to the CSM Office of Human Resources. If a supervisor fails to evaluate an
employee, that employee shall receive a default rating of “Meets Expectations” until a
final rating can be given.

Effective with the April 1, 2007, performance cycle, three rating levels will be used for
final evaluations for annual performance awards (achievement pay) payable on July 1.
The three rating level definitions are:

Definition of Level 3 – Exceptional Performer
This rating represents consistently exceptional and documented performance or
consistently superior achievement beyond the regular assignment. Employees
make exceptional contribution(s) that have a significant and positive impact on
the performance of the unit or the organization and may materially advance the
mission of the organization. The employee provides a model for excellence and
helps others to do their jobs better. Peers, immediate supervision, higher-level
management and others can readily recognize such a level of performance.

Definition of Level 2 – Meets Expectations
This rating level encompasses a range of expected performance. It includes
employees who are successfully developing in the job, employees who exhibit
competency in work behaviors, skills, and assignments, and accomplished
performers who consistently exhibit the desired competencies effectively and
independently. These employees are meeting all the expectations, standards,
requirements, and objectives on their performance plan and, on occasion,
exceed them. This is the employee who reliably performs the job assigned and
may even have a documented impact beyond the regular assignments and
performance objectives that directly supports the mission of the organization.

Definition of Level 1 – Needs Improvement
This rating level encompasses those employees whose performance does not
consistently and independently meet expectations set forth in the performance
plan as well as those employees whose performance is clearly unsatisfactory
and consistently fails to meet requirements and expectations.

Marginal performance requires substantial monitoring and close supervision to
ensure progression toward a level of performance that meets expectations.
Although these employees are not currently meeting expectations, they may be
progressing satisfactorily toward a level 2 rating and need coaching/direction in
order to satisfy the core expectations of the position.

The evaluation process includes preparing for the evaluation, writing the evaluation,
reviewing the proposed evaluation with the reviewer, discussing the results with the
employee, and forwarding to next level supervisor or reviewer. If an employee receives
a Needs Improvement rating, a performance improvement plan and/or corrective action
must accompany the evaluation form.

Information about the employee’s job performance should be obtained from multiple
sources including peers, internal and external customers, and direct reports if


appropriate. If the employee reported to more than one supervisor during the
evaluation period, feedback from both should be considered when preparing the
evaluation. Supervisors must determine the credibility and reliability of the information

Supervisors are not required, but are strongly encouraged, to assign a performance
rating to new employees beginning in January through March. If the supervisor does
not give a rating, the default level of Meets Expectations will be given to the new

Employees functioning under a ‘matrix’ organization or as part of a team offer special
challenges. The User’s Guide provides suggestions and guidance for managers and
employees working in these environments.

CSM’s Performance Management Program stresses the importance of completing the
narrative section of the performance evaluation. This portion of the evaluation should
describe in detail the basis for the evaluation decision, provide feedback to the
employee, identify training needs, and provide direction for the performance plan for the
next evaluation period.


After discussing proposed evaluations with the reviewer, immediate supervisors will
meet with their employees as part of the evaluation process to discuss results over the
performance cycle. This meeting should take place early enough in March to ensure
that the final overall rating can be completed by the end of March. Both the employee
and the supervisor should prepare for this meeting. The final overall rating is not given
at this time. The supervisor should consider all information, complete the CSM
Performance Management Form with a recommended rating, and provide the form to
the reviewer.

A designated reviewer will review an employee’s completed evaluation. Usually, the 2nd
level supervisor is the reviewer. This is to be accomplished before the final evaluation
is given to the employee by the immediate supervisor. Reviewers are encouraged to
meet with other designated reviewers to ensure completion of evaluations with some
consistency throughout the school.

CSM’S Performance Program includes an institutional review of all evaluations by the
Vice Presidents, or their designees, prior to final evaluations being given to the
employee to ensure the evaluations comply with Program guidelines.


Statistics will be maintained in the Office of Human Resources and will be reported to
the State Personnel Director as requested.


Performance Evaluation Process (March of each year)

After prior discussion with reviewer,

supervisor and employee discuss

employee’s results in relation to objectives
in performance plan

Describe and assess employee’s job

performance using the measurement
methods in the performance plan
Discuss results of the
measured goals and
objectives outlined in the
performance plan
Complete evaluation form,
according to rating levels:
(Needs Improvement, Meets
Expectations, or Exceptional
Performance evaluation is
reviewed and signed by next
level supervisor.
Employee and/or supervisor
Is the employee:
MUST develop and issue a
performance improvement
Expectations or an
plan and/or corrective action
that includes specific actions,
consequences, and
checkpoint dates.
Employee and supervisor
sign evaluation form. Begin
performance planning for
next year.
Send original signed copy of
evaluation to HR, employee
receives copy, and 1 copy is
retained for work unit files



Pay associated with the Colorado School of Mines Performance Pay Program is
governed by the following statewide requirements:

1. In accordance with State of Colorado Personnel Rules, prior to the payment of
annual performance awards, the Director of the Department of Personnel and
Administration shall specify and publish the percentage ranges or other salary
adjustments for performance levels based on the available statewide
performance pay funding.

2. Any permanent employee is eligible for an annual performance adjustment,
except as provided below. All performance awards are effective on July 1. The
adjustment is based on the final overall rating. The employee must be
employed on July 1 to receive payment of an adjustment. The employee’s
current department as of July 1 is responsible for payment of the adjustment.

3. If the final overall rating is Exceptional Performer, the adjustment to base pay
shall not exceed the grade maximum. Any portion of the annual performance
award amount that exceeds grade maximum shall be paid as a one-time lump
sum in the July payroll. The statutory lid does not apply to any non-base
building portion of the award.

4. If the final overall rating is Meets Expectations, the adjustment cannot exceed
the grade maximum. If base pay is at grade maximum or in saved pay above
the maximum, the employee is ineligible for an annual performance award.

5. If the final overall rating is Needs Improvement, the employee is ineligible for an
annual performance award.

6. An employee granted an annual performance award shall not be denied the
adjustment because of a corrective or disciplinary action for an incident after the
close of the previous performance cycle.

7. Base building adjustments are permanent and paid as regular salary.

No quotas or forced distributions for determining the number of ratings in any of the
three performance levels shall be established. CSM also encourages the use of
non-monetary increases to supplement base-building annual performance awards.

Transferring employees without a break in service and employees promoting from other
state employers shall be entitled to a full annual performance award based on their final
performance rating. Consideration may be given to the rating received from their former
employer. As a condition of employment, hiring supervisors should have an agreement
with the transferring/promoting employee whether the former evaluation will be


Employees transferring or promoting between CSM departments are entitled to a full
annual performance award based on their final performance rating. Consideration shall
be given to the interim rating given by the former supervisor. The new
supervisor/department shall be financially responsible for any increase received by the
new employee.


Employees and managers may have differences of opinions related to performance
standards and evaluation ratings. Employees may question certain matters regarding
performance plans and ratings through the dispute resolution process. The purpose of
the dispute resolution system is to create an open, impartial, and non-confrontational
opportunity that allows the parties to have issues heard. Retaliation against any person
involved in the dispute resolution process is prohibited and will be dealt with according
to CSM policy.

Employees may only dispute the following issues:
Their own performance plan (or lack of a plan)1;
Their own final performance evaluation or the lack of a final evaluation; or
Application of CSM’s Performance Management Program, policies, or
processes to the individual employee’s performance plan or final

The following issues are NOT disputable*:
The content of CSM’s Performance Management Program;
Matters related to the funds appropriated; or
The performance evaluation and salary adjustments of other employees.

*Although these issues are not disputable, supervisors and managers are encouraged to make sincere
efforts in responding to, and/or addressing any concerns raised by their employees.

There are two stages within the Dispute Resolution Process – the Internal Stage and
the External Stage. Only the issue(s) as originally presented in writing shall be
considered throughout the dispute resolution process. CSM believes in resolving
concerns as quickly as possible and at the lowest level possible. Therefore, CSM will
attempt to solve all issues related to performance management at the Internal Stage.
The Internal Stage will address issues concerning the individual’s performance plan (or
lack of a plan) and the individual’s performance evaluation or lack thereof. These
issues will be addressed at the institution level, and employees will have no further
recourse for resolution of these matters.

The External Stage addresses disputes concerning the application of the CSM
Performance Management Program, policies or processes to the individual employee’s

1 Note: Performance plans may be disputed, but only within ten days of their creation and provision to the
employee. At the time of evaluation, the lack of a performance plan may form the basis of a dispute regarding the
final performance evaluation.


performance plan or final evaluation. Discussions about these disputes should begin at
the Internal Stage. If there is no resolution at the Internal Stage, the issue may proceed
to the State Personnel Director.

Performance evaluation disputes that allege discrimination must be submitted to:

Colorado State Personnel Board
633 17th Street, Suite 1320
Denver, CO 80202-3604
Fax: 303-866-5038

The Colorado School of Mines Performance Dispute Resolution Form and instructions
for the process will be given to CSM employees annually as part of their performance
evaluation process. An employee wishing to initiate the Dispute Resolution Process,
regarding the appropriate issues identified above, will advise his/her supervisor within
three working days of the event. The employee must complete the CSM Performance
Dispute Resolution Form and provide a copy of the form to the immediate supervisor,
Division and/or Department Head of the employee’s work unit, and to the CSM
Associate Vice President for Human Resources.

The supervisor will have five working days upon receipt of the Dispute Resolution
Form to schedule a meeting with the employee, the supervisor, and the next level
supervisor (or reviewer) to discuss the issues. Extension of this time frame is allowed
only if both parties agree, or in the event that the reviewer is away from CSM (in such a
case, the meeting must be scheduled within five working days of the reviewer’s return to

Three working days following the meeting, the supervisor will provide the employee
with a written response to the employee’s concerns. The written response shall include
the issues discussed, possible resolutions, and the collective decision of the supervisor
and the reviewer. A copy of this response must be provided to those who took part in
the meeting and to the CSM Associate Vice President for Human Resources.

If the employee is not satisfied with the initial decision, he/she can request a second
review, submitted in writing, to their appropriate Vice President. This request for a
second review must occur within three working days of receipt of the initial decision.
The Vice President will have five working days to meet with the employee and the two
supervisory employees.

The Vice President will review the facts surrounding the current action but shall not
substitute his or her judgment for that of the rater and/or reviewer. The Vice President
will issue his/her decision within three working days of the meeting. This decision
shall be binding on all issues except those that allege that the CSM Performance
Management Program was not followed. For those that allege that the program was not
followed, the employee may proceed to the External Stage.

No party has an absolute right to legal representation, but an advisor may accompany
the employee at any step within this process. The role of the advisor is to assist the


employee in the process, but the employee is expected to present his/her issues in
these meetings.

The Director of the State Department of Personnel and Administration administers the
External Stage. Only original issues involving the application of the performance
management program may advance to this stage.

Within five working days from the date of the agency’s final decision, an employee
may file a written request for external review with the Director addressed to: Appeals
Processing, 1313 Sherman Street, First Floor, Denver, CO 80203. The request shall
include a copy of the original issue(s) submitted in writing and CSM’s written final
decision issued at the internal review stage. All requests for review are subject to an
initial screening to determine if the review is warranted. Such screening is based on
specific criteria published by the Director. If a determination is made that further review
is not warranted, it is final and binding and the employee will be notified accordingly. If
further review is warranted, the Director or designee may select a qualified neutral third
party to review the issue(s). The director has 30 days to issue a written decision, which
is final and binding.

Throughout the dispute resolution process, the scope of authority of those responsible
for making final decisions is limited to reviewing the facts surrounding the current
issues, within the limits of CSM’s programs. For an issue being reviewed at the external
stage, individuals responsible for making decisions shall not substitute their judgment
for that of the rater, reviewer, or CSM’s dispute resolution decision maker at the internal
dispute stage. External decision makers have the authority to instruct the rater to: a)
follow CSM’s program; b) correct an error; or c) reconsider an individual performance
plan or final overall evaluation. Additionally, other processes, such as mediation, may
be suggested.