STAR Program: FAQs

  1. Who can approve a STAR Award?
  2. What’s the process for requesting a STAR Award?
  3. If I want to request an award for a team or workgroup, should I complete a separate request form for each individual?
  4. Is there a deadline for requesting a STAR Award?
  5. Once a request is approved, when can an employee expect to receive payment of a STAR award?
  6. How will employees be notified if they are going to receive a STAR award?
  7. Can I give an award to an employee who works in another department? What approvals are required?
  8. What is the fund source for STAR awards?

1. Who can approve a STAR Award?

STAR awards up to $2,500 require the approval of the Division Head. A list of approval authorities is included on the second page of the STAR program summary. STAR awards that exceed $2,500 require the approval of the EVP of Business Operations in consultation with the other members of the President’s Operations Group (POG): Provost and EVP Academic Affairs, EVP and Chief Financial Officer; SVP External Relations; SVP Health Sciences and Services; and VP and General Counsel.

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2. What’s the process for requesting a STAR Award?

Complete a nomination form, including a brief description of the specific reason for the nomination and the applicable FAU number. Then obtain the required approvals up to the Division Head level. After the Division Head has approved, the completed form should be routed to Sherry Perocier in OP Local Human Resources (sherry.perocier@ucop.edu). Forms may be submitted electronically. For awards over $2,500, Local HR will coordinate review/approval with EVP Brostrom’s office. Request forms should not be sent directly to BRC Payroll; forms sent directly to BRC Payroll will be returned to the sender.

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3. If I want to request an award for a team or workgroup, should I complete a separate request form for each individual?

Yes.

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4. Is there a deadline for requesting a STAR Award?

STAR awards may be presented at anytime during the year and should be awarded as soon as possible after the accomplishment or event in order to provide immediate recognition to employees. The OP STAR Program has been approved through June 30, 2014. Continuation of the program beyond June 2014 is subject to annual review.

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5. Once a request is approved, when can an employee expect to receive payment of a STAR award?

STAR awards will be processed as they are approved and paid in the next regular paycheck. Timing is subject to payroll deadlines. STAR awards are considered taxable income, but they are not covered compensation under the UC Retirement Plan. STAR awards will not be issued as separate, off-cycle checks.

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6. How will employees be notified if they are going to receive a STAR award?

After awards are approved, they are forwarded by HR to BRC Payroll for processing. HR will provide a notification letter template to the nominator, which can then be completed and given to the employee.

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7. Can I give an award to an employee who works in another department? What approvals are required?

Yes, in order to request an award for an employee in another department, the nominator should first obtain approval from the employee’s immediate supervisor to confirm the employee has a ‘meets expectations’ performance rating and is otherwise eligible. Additional approvals at the Department and Division Head level should come from the department/division that is the source of funding for the award.

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8. What is the fund source for STAR awards?

There will be no central source of funding for the program, so awards must be paid from existing division and department budgets. Unrestricted fund sources (mainly assessment funds) may be used for STAR Awards. The use of restricted funds is subject to any restrictions on those funds.

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