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About . Employee Handbook . Employment 

2. Employment

2.1 Personnel records

We strive to keep accurate and current information concerning all employees. To this end, you should update your information in the event of changes such as new mailing addresses, telephone numbers, beneficiary changes, number and names of dependents, individuals to be contacted in case of emergency, educational accomplishments, etc. If you have any questions, please consult with Human Resources.

Employees are welcome to review their own personnel file in the Human Resources Office by appointment; however, the personnel file is the property of the College and may not be copied or taken upon leaving employment.

2.2 Employment verification

Requests for verification of employment information of current and former employees of the College should be directed to Human Resources. It is the College’s policy to verify only job title and dates of employment. Salary information is only verified with the employee’s written authorization and signature.

Employees are directed not to respond to requests for employment verifications. Any employee who receives a request should direct the caller or forward the written request to Human Resources.

2.3 Employment at will

Consistent with the laws in the state of Ohio, your employment with Cleveland Institute of Art is “at will.” Your employment can be terminated by you or by Cleveland Institute of Art with or without cause and with or without notice, at any time, and at the option of either you or Cleveland Institute of Art except as otherwise provided by law. 

Nothing in this employee handbook is intended to or creates an employment agreement, express or implied. Nothing contained in this or any other document provided to the employee is intended to be, nor should it be, construed as a contract that employment or any benefit will be continued for any period of time. No manager or employee of the College has the authority to enter into any agreement for employment for any specified period of time, to make any agreement for employment other than at-will, or to limit or modify any employee’s at-will status. Only the President or Vice President of Human Resources has the authority to make any such agreement and then, only in a formal written agreement.

Any salary figures provided to an employee in annual or monthly terms are stated for the sake of convenience or to facilitate comparisons and are not intended and do not create an employment contract for any specific period of time.

Nothing in this statement is intended to interfere with, restrain, or prevent concerted activity as protected by the National Labor Relations Act. Such activity includes employee communications regarding wages, hours, or other terms or conditions of employment. CIA employees have the right to engage in or refrain from such activities.

2.4 Orientation period

The Orientation Period is used to determine if a new employee’s performance successfully meets the expectations of the role and if continued employment is warranted. The Orientation Period shall consist of the first ninety (90) days of employment (including transfer or promotion within the organization). During this time, the employee’s supervisor will work with them to establish clearly defined performance goals; educate about the competencies of the position; provide the employee with positive feedback regarding strengths and progress, share constructive feedback in reference to any deficiencies observed; and assess whether the employee’s performance meets the expectations of the position.

If deficiencies are identified during the Orientation Period, the supervisor will provide an opportunity for the employee to improve performance, demonstrate competencies, and/or achieve stated goals. If deficiencies are significant or persist throughout the Orientation Period and appear to compromise the employee’s ability to successfully perform the job further action may be taken including termination of employment or extension of the Orientation Period.  A decision to pursue termination of employment or extension of the Orientation Period must be made in consultation with Human Resources.

At various times during the Orientation Period, full-time and part-time employees will begin to be eligible for benefits as currently offered by CIA and described elsewhere in this Handbook. 

2.5 Anniversary date

The first day you report to work is your “official” anniversary date. Your anniversary date is used to compute various conditions and benefits described in this Handbook. Employees who terminate and are rehired within six months will have their anniversary date reinstated. Any employee rehired after six months will start their employment over with a new hire date and anniversary date. 

2.6 Job description

A job description for each position is maintained by CIA. When your duties and responsibilities are changed, your job description may be updated.
Job descriptions also require periodic updating even if the overall duties remain the same. Updated job descriptions are evaluated within the CIA approved compensation program for appropriate pay levels. If you are not familiar with your job description, please ask your supervisor or contact the Human Resources Office. The existence of a job description does not limit your duties to those specified in it and CIA reserves the right to reassign employees to other work.

2.7 Performance evaluation & compensation 

Supervisors are encouraged to regularly provide feedback on employee job performance and goal achievement. In addition, formal performance evaluations are typically conducted at the close of each fiscal year (June 30) to provide the employee and supervisor an opportunity to discuss job performance, recognize strengths, identify areas for development, improvement, and discuss approaches for setting/meeting goals. 

This evaluation should include a review of the employee’s job description with their supervisor. If it is determined that changes should be made to accurately reflect the employee’s responsibilities, the supervisor will submit these to the VP of Human Resources + Inclusion. Timely submission of a performance evaluation with an overall performance rating of satisfactory or higher is required for staff to be eligible for any approved salary increase.

Compensation at the Cleveland Institute of Art is based on factors including but not limited to satisfactory job performance, economic factors (enrollment and funding), value of job within the College, value of job externally in the geographical areas in which we recruit, and other considerations. The goal of the College is to maintain a salary structure that is competitive with other institutions of higher education and the labor market from which we recruit. While not guaranteed, salary increases for cost of living and for merit, as well as periodic overall salary evaluation, are considered in this goal.

2.8 Outside activities & employment/conflict of interest

The purpose of this policy is to ensure that outside activities do not detract from employees’ and faculty members’ employment obligation to the College. Each employee is responsible for directing their primary effort to assigned responsibilities and duties related to their department, program, and the College. Outside activities, whether gainful or not, may not interfere with or infringe upon these responsibilities and duties. The use of College resources to support outside activities or employment is prohibited. For more information, refer to section 10 on the Use of College Equipment, Facilities & Resources

Employees may hold a job outside the College as long as they meet the performance standards of their job at CIA and as long as there is no conflict or appearance of a conflict of interest. Employees should consider the impact that outside employment may have on their ability to perform their job at the College. Job performance will be judged by the same standards and will be subject to the same scheduling demands as all other employees, regardless of any outside employment. If outside employment interferes with an employee’s ability to satisfactorily meet the performance expectations of the job, the employee may be asked to terminate that outside employment to remain employed at CIA. 

2.9 Job postings

CIA is committed to hiring the very best talent into its workforce and in so doing recruits from diverse sources. The College also believes in providing opportunities to current employees and faculty for advancement within the College. When a vacancy occurs, the College typically posts the available position on the CIA website. Any current employee or faculty member who is interested and meets the position qualifications is encouraged to respond by submitting a cover letter and resume prior to the deadline, as indicated in the posting. Qualified employees will be considered and granted interviews as appropriate. Candidates may also be sought from the outside. Employees and faculty are eligible for the posted position only if they have held their present position for at least one year. 

CIA reserves the right to promote or move employees into open positions without first internally posting the position or otherwise advertising, where this is determined to be appropriate.

2.10 Alternative work arrangements

In some circumstances, CIA employees may be considered for alternative work arrangements so long as such arrangement complies with the Fair Labor Standards Act and other applicable requirements. To see if you qualify, discuss your options with your supervisor and Human Resources. 

Alternative work arrangements are considered on a case-by-case basis and may result in the following:

Flexible Work Schedule (Flextime)
Employees choose to shift their everyday schedule by starting the day later or leaving earlier. The total of working hours doesn’t change. “Core hours” may be established during which an employee is obliged to be present at the workplace.

Reduced hours when an employee works for less than the standard working hours either by fewer hours per day or by fewer days per week. In such cases salary is calculated anew depending on the new schedule.

Compressed Work Week
Employees work longer hours on a number of days per week so they can take time off on the remaining days. Total working hours and compensation remain the same.

Remote Work
Allows an employee to work at home or in a satellite location for all or part of their regular work week.

2.11 Work schedules

The College’s regular work week is generally defined as Monday through Friday, with office hours scheduled between 8am–5pm except for those offices with service hours at other designated times. Employees will be notified by their supervisor of their regular scheduled hours of work. With reasonable advance notice, supervisors reserve the right to adjust work schedules and shift assignments to meet the College’s operational needs. 

2.12 Employment of relatives

We are sensitive to the potential for favoritism (or appearance of favoritism) and other problems created by the hiring, promotion, or transfer of relatives. With this in mind, no employee in a management or supervisory position may have an immediate family member working in the same area or have direct supervisory responsibilities for that individual. Immediate family, for the purposes of this policy, is defined as spouse, domestic partner, parent, child, sister, brother. If two employees or faculty marry or become qualified domestic partners, creating a conflict with this policy, one of the employees or faculty may be asked to transfer to another position within the College (at the Chief Academic Officer’s discretion) or resign.

For more information:

Lisa Schumann
Associate Director of Human Resources
216.421.7405 | Contact

- OR -

Charise Reid
Vice President of Human Resources + Inclusion
216.421.7312 | Contact

- OR -

Lesley Parker-Bryant
Human Resources Specialist
216.421.7484 | Contact