August 2007



Printable version



















Table of Contents
















Table of Contents















Table of Contents














Table of Contents
















Table of Contents



























Table of Contents










Table of Contents















Table of Contents















Table of Contents










Table of Contents















Table of Contents



2007 Corporate Partners

American Family Insurance
Lee Hecht Harrison
Melli, Walker, Pease & Ruhly, S.C.
Right Management

Fidelitec, LLC
Klaas Financial

Higgins Hemb Insurance Group
Neider & Boucher, S.C.
Payroll Data Services
Physicians Plus Insurance Corporation
Stark Company Realtors
UW-Madison Executive Education
Winterthur North America / General Casualty

Thank you!


ark Your Calendar

Click here to view the full calendar of events and meeting notices.

September 18 - Chapter Meeting - Focus on COBRA

With 3 years under your belt since the most recent COBRA updates, this may have become an issue that has fallen off your radar.  The September Chapter Meeting will give you an opportunity to revisit the basics of COBRA to refine your knowledge of the topic and how to work through those tough issues.

Program Details - Registration Open Soon!

NEW! - GMA SHRM Logo Wear Now Available -

In celebration of our 50th anniversary, Greater Madison Area (GMA) Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) is now offering a variety of professional items bearing the GMA SHRM logo for purchase. Click here to view items or place an order!

2007 GMA SHRM Compensation Survey

The participation deadline has now passed and the data is now being compiled. Order your survey now so you will be on the first shipment expected September 1.

Click here for the 2007 Compensation Survey Information Page!


News/Updates - for more information, click topic in left hand column

- SHRM National news  
- State Council news  
- Committee announcements  
- View 2007/2008 GMA SHRM Board of Directors  
- New members  
- Job line See the latest job postings!
- Office News  
- Partner Program Learn more about our Corporate Partner Program and other Sponsorship Opportunities
- Certifications  

Printable version

By Anthony Dix, PHR GMA SHRM President


On June 15th, the GMA SHRM Board and many of the committee representatives met for a full day strategic planning session at American Family Insurance. The purpose of this session was to review our strategic plan, assess our success in delivering key initiatives and analyze the feedback we received from our membership survey.

In conjunction with the rest of the board and respective committee representatives, we chose three main areas to focus on in the upcoming year:

1. Volunteers: Enhance the recruitment, orientation, retention and succession planning for all volunteers within GMA SHRM. If you are interested in learning more about becoming a volunteer through our chapter, please feel free to contact me directly or visit our website at

2. Programming: As many of you indicated in the survey, we should continue to offer high-quality programming. This includes a better definition of the programming options available and the need to educate members of the differences associated with chapter meetings, Wednesday’s in the Park (WIPs), Professional Emphasis Groups (PEGS) and other programming offerings.

3. Philanthropic: We will be forming a task force to define the criteria for selecting organizations for our work in this area.  It is our intent to provide opportunities for our members to give back to the community while increasing awareness of the human resources profession in the community.  In turn, through our philanthropic endeavors with selected organizations we expect to learn more about their services, which may not only impact the community as a whole but which may be resources to the employees we serve in our own companies.

As we move forward with these specific initiatives, the GMA SHRM Board will be sure to update you on progress as well as other initiatives we are working on.

I welcome your insight and advice as GMA SHRM moves forward in pursuit of excellence in advancing the HR profession and serving the HR professional.

Enjoy the rest of your summer,

Anthony J. Dix, PHR
GMA SHRM President

By Cassy Van Dyke, SPHR GMA SHRM President Elect

Greetings GMA SHRM Members,

As your newly appointed President Elect for the GMA SHRM chapter, I wanted to take this opportunity to thank you for electing me to my new role, and provide you with an overview of my position. It is an honor, a pleasure, and a responsibility I take seriously.

The role of President Elect is primarily to learn from and serve as a backup to President, the role that I will be assuming next fiscal year beginning in July 2008. I am also responsible for the following responsibilities:

- Monitor, complete, and submit the Chapter Achievement Plan (CAP)

- Submit Pinnacle Award nominations

- Participate in strategic planning

- Champion succession planning for the chapter

- Serve as a point of contact for members with careers in transition
and, of course:

- “Other duties as assigned.”

In this article, I want to particularly highlight my role as a liaison for members with careers in transition. I have personally experienced a number of transitions recently: from GMA SHRM Director of Marketing and Communications to President Elect; from my former role with UW Medical Foundation to my new role in Talent Management at American Family Insurance; and soon, into my role as a new mom. As I reflect on the past year, I am grateful to all the people who have served as valuable resources to me through these transitions, and I hope to serve as a resource for our members as well.

If you are a member who is in between jobs, or who is currently employed but seeking new positions or career paths, I can assist in connecting you with chapter and community resources. There is a wealth of resources available to you, from job boards to member organizations that provide career transition services. Please let me know if I can assist you in any way.

Again, I thank you for electing me into the President Elect role. I look forward to the year ahead.

Please contact me with any questions.

Cassy Van Dyke, SPHR
President Elect
608-242-4100, ext. 30150

Assembly Bill to Limit CCAP Access

Representatives in the State Assembly have introduced a bill (AB 418) to restrict public access to the Consolidated Court Automation Programs (CCAP) system. Presently, CCAP allows anyone to search for all cases, civil and criminal, in which the subject of the search is a party. The system is available on the Internet with no limitations on who can access it.

AB 418 would provide unlimited access to Wisconsin judges, other court officials, law enforcement personnel, attorneys, and accredited journalists. The bill would permit limited access to CCAP for other persons only if they submit a written request to the clerk of courts or district attorney in the county where the information is filed. The request for information would be granted if it shows a reasonable need for disclosure.

For further information, try these resources:

Full text of the bill --

Wisconsin Legislative Tracking --


Strategies to Help Employees Navigate the Health Care System  

Fall Pilot Trainings for Human Resources and Employee Assistance Program Professionals

As health care systems grow more complex, employees and their families face many challenges as they attempt to access quality care. At the same time, employers’ investments in health care benefit packages climb, and managers want to ensure employees are getting the most from their premium dollars.

In this unique training opportunity, faculty from the Center for Patient Partnerships at the University of Wisconsin will guide participants as they examine key challenges and strategies that Human Resource (HR) managers and Employee Assistance Professionals (EAP) can use to help employees help themselves.

Take-home lessons will include ways employers can help employees:
• become more engaged in their health care
• recognize and assemble support in the community
• anticipate and manage medical debt and personal financial issues.

EAP and HR professionals will also learn ways to accommodate employees diagnosed with serious and life-threatening illnesses and what to expect following return to work.

The training format is comprised of day-long interactive training sessions to engage attendees in case-based discussions illustrating key information and resources that HR professionals and EAP can use to assist employees facing tough choices related to health care.

Training sessions are offered October 9 th in Madison and November 16 th in Menasha. A Milwaukee session is to be announced.

To apply for one of the three case-based training sessions contact Kathleen O’Connell at Due to the one-on-one and small group nature of the case-based training format, attendance will be limited. An additional large group session has been added to the Wisconsin Society for Human Resources Annual State Conference in La Crosse.

The nominal fee of $25.00 will be assessed to cover expense for session materials, break refreshments, and a working-lunch for participants. This program has been underwritten by the University of Wisconsin - Madison's prestigious Ira and Ineva Reilly Baldwin Wisconsin Idea Endowment.

Professional Development Hours will be available to Employee Assistance Professionals and Continuing Credit Hours for Human Resources Personnel (application presently pending with HRCI) .

Program Facilitators hail from the Center for Patient Partnerships:

Martha (“Meg”) Gaines, JD, LLM, is Clinical Professor of Law at the University of Wisconsin Law School and is also the Director of the Center.

Sarah Davis, JD, MPA , is Associate Director of the Center

Mary Michaud, MPP, is Director of Evaluation and Policy at the Center

For more information visit:


The Importance of Corporate Culture
by Nancy N. Stott, HR Information & Solutions Director, MRA

Studies by the Saratoga Institute and others have shown that if an organization pays employees fairly, compensation is generally not the most important determinant of employee job satisfaction. Other factors are generally more influential in producing employees who are satisfied, engaged, and intend to stay with the organization. One of the most important of these factors is the corporate culture.

Corporate culture can be thought of as the unique personality or character of an organization. It includes the organization’s core values and beliefs, corporate ethics, and code of conduct. It influences how employees think, feel, and act, as well as how business is done. It is expressed in subtle and no-so-subtle ways—by the appearance of the organization’s facilities and employees, by the way employees treat customers and each other, and through written documentation such as a mission statement, among others.

How does an organization come to have a corporate culture? Often the “personality” just evolves because leaders are caught up in the demands of running the business. But many management experts believe a corporate culture can be consciously created or changed. Any change must begin with a corporate self-assessment to determine where the organization is at the present time. This involves determining what sets the organization apart from others by identifying its unique beliefs, behaviors, and practices. An employee opinion survey may provide valuable insight into employees’ perceptions of the corporate culture. Using the results of the self-assessment and the employee opinion survey, management should decide which elements of the corporate culture are positive and should be enhanced, and which elements need to be changed.

The process of mapping out the changes can be long and controversial—it is, after all, the core values and beliefs of the organization that are being discussed. Once the new direction is established, the road never ends. While an organization’s core values and beliefs may remain fairly constant over time, management practices that support the corporate culture constantly evolve as labor conditions and workforce demographics change.

Corporate culture plays a large role in the company’s public image. Satisfied employees are a company’s best advertisement. Companies with great corporate cultures seldom have problems with recruiting because they attract the best candidates simply by word of mouth. On the other hand, because a great corporate culture often produces a great place to work, these companies usually have low turnover and fewer positions to fill.

Employees whose values and beliefs are closely aligned with those of the organization are most likely to thrive. Corporate culture is not a one-size-fits-all proposition. A great corporate culture may be a bit quirky and appeal only to certain types of candidates. Google is an example of such a company. Its culture attracts the diverse and innovative employees that keep it fresh, but the relaxed, yet challenging culture does not appeal to everyone. Each organization should strive to create a culture and project an image that attracts the type of people that are key to its success.

Developing a strong corporate culture will allow the organization to increase the chances of retaining its highest performing employees and attract and hire the job candidates that are best suited to the particular corporate culture. This is an enviable position to be in during the expected labor market shortage.

Nancy N. Stott is HR Information & Solutions Director for MRA. Nancy has helped hundreds of employers find workable solutions to their employment challenges, including managing family leave issues, responding to charges of discrimination or harassment in the workplace, understanding benefits issues, complying with the Americans with Disabilities Act and other laws affecting employment. Nancy graduated cum laude from Marquette Law School. Prior to joining MRA, she spent 16 years as employment counsel for a major Milwaukee manufacturing company. Phone: 800.488.4845, web:


Website of the Month: Social Security Online

The Social Security Administration had launched a Human Resource Managers webpage that offers information and resources on various Social Security programs and Medicare. The site strives to be a “valuable resource in helping your employees plan for retirement or other life events.”

The site does not extensively speak to the HR audience since most of the resources and links are directed at the individual taxpayer. However, HR professionals may find it useful whether to brush up on their own knowledge of Social Security benefits or to be able to answer questions or provide resources to employees about these major government programs.

Go to

Challenged by your current recruiting efforts?

Let the YWCA Employment and Training Annex assist you in locating pre-screened candidates with the skills you need free of charge!

The YWCA provides job training and counseling in a range of vocations to community members. Program participants are diverse in backgrounds, including skill sets and educational experience. Individuals participate in a screening process involving, assessing skills/aptitude, conducting driver record and background checks, and reviewing attendance and participation. Let us know what your needs are and we’ll refer appropriate applicants. In addition, the YWCA is partnered with other agencies such as MATC, Urban League, and Madison Urban Ministry, ensuring that the right applicant for you will be found!

Our mission is to ensure the success of our participants in their careers. After hire, we will work with you and the referred employee to ensure long-term retention and continued progress by providing training support, continued supportive services for the employee, and mediation efforts if needed. Also, when you actively recruit from the YWCA pool of applicants you can receive discounted rates on our cultural competency and workplace diversity training sessions. You can attend one of our regularly scheduled events or schedule a training session in your workplace for all employees.

To explore this recruiting opportunity in more detail please contact Leslie Westerfelt, Job Options Coordinator, at (608) 255-3283 or You can also visit our website for more detail about our programs at

50 th Anniversary Thoughts and Memories
Past President Reflections – Belinda Weber, SPHR, CCP

As GMA SHRM celebrates its 50 th anniversary, I was asked to offer some reflections on the history of the profession. My thoughts instantly went to the most significant change I’ve seen in the Human Resources profession – that of becoming an intrigual and strategic part of the business.

Who would have thought 50 years ago that HR leaders would be dealing with such organizational challenges as workforce planning, talent management, human capital R&D and the integration of four very diverse generations into the workplace, just to name a few. Unlike today, personnel and human relations managers of the 50’s were responsible for motivating people and helping their organizations navigate through the complexities of regulations, executive orders, and court decisions. They were embedded in the day-to-day management of the corporate policies, procedures, and human resources systems.

Although many challenges remain in order for HR to attain the strategic status of a true business partner or better yet, a business driver, we have come a long way as a profession. Our emerging role in long-range strategic planning and organizational performance optimization is exciting and the continued challenge to understand and manage the complex interactions of technology, work, organizational strategies, and people is one that I’m passionately engaged in.

GMA SHRM has played a foundational role in this pursuit. The great program offerings, professional membership, and leadership opportunity as the Board President, has given my career depth. I am truly honored to be part of such a strong professional organization and am looking forward to seeing what the future holds for both our profession and GMA SHRM.

Belinda Weber, SPHR, CCP
Past President 2006-2007

Welcome New Members!

GMA SHRM welcomes the following members who joined our chapter in June.

Anne C. Cannoy, PHR

Sr. Employee & Labor Relations Consultant

UW Health

Holli S. Dixon

Field Mangement Specialist

American Family Insurance

Ashley Everson, PHR

Human Resources Supervisor


Terri M. Lefebvre

Organization Effectiveness Consultant

American Family Insurance

John A. Palmer, II

On-Site Supervisor

Di & Associates

Matthew R. Shefchik


QTI Group

Susan E. Ullman, PHR

Human Resources Generalist

Cummins Filtration

Annie M. Weatherby

Education/Outreach Coordinator

City of Madison

Alysson R. Zimmerman

HR Manager

The Madison Club




Movin' Up

Have you started with a new company? Has your organization recently promoted you to a new position? Or do you want to recognize a new person or promotion within your department? If so, we want to hear about it. Send us an e-mail, and we’ll publish your good news in the next HR InTouch!


HR InTouch Guidelines

Article Writing:

Do you have an interest in writing for the HR InTouch? We have an interest in learning more about your area of expertise!

Why should you volunteer? Top three reasons: 1) to share your knowledge and experiences to educate others; 2) to become more connected in the HR and Dane County communities; and 3) to contribute towards the advancement of GMA SHRM and the HR profession.

The first step is for you to choose a submission option: you can pre-submit an article to GMA SHRM at any time for us to use in any of the upcoming newsletters, you can sign up to write for a particular month, or we can put you on a list of people to contact in future months whenever we need articles.

Article length:

Because the HR InTouch is now in an online format, the size is flexible. The article should be engaging and hold readers’ attention. Include the core information in your article, and we will advise if it is too lengthy.


GMA SHRM is conscious not to allow solicitation through the articles, in an effort to protect the interests of our partners and members. The nature of the article should be educational (i.e., what are the business advantages of having a product like yours) or informational. Otherwise, if you truly are interested in advertising through the HR InTouch, you can work with our Marketing Committee. As a rule of thumb for article writing, if the submission relates to a for-profit event, or specifically markets your company (vs. your industry), it is an advertisement, and should be purchased. If it is a not-for-profit event that your company is hosting, or an announcement (i.e., a SHRM member recently joined your company), it is an acceptable addition to the HR InTouch content. If you have any questions related to the appropriateness of your submission, please contact us.

If you have questions, or to submit an article, contact GMA SHRM at .







Greater Madison Area SHRM, Inc.
2830 Agriculture Dr.
Madison, WI 53718
(608) 204-9814
fax: (608) 204-9818

© 2004; Greater Madison Area SHRM, Inc. All rights reserved.