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Rochester Community and Technical College
Service Standards
Employee
Guidelines

“You may be someone's first and last impression of RCTC."



Welcoming, Safe, and Respectful Environment:

  • Be helpful by proactively assisting stakeholders.
  • Be enthusiastic, knowledgeable, and confident.
  • Focus on the stakeholder and make him/her feel valued.
  • Acknowledge others by greeting them, making eye contact and smiling.
    • Good morning.
    • Welcome to RCTC.
    • How May I Help You?
  • Introduce yourself when appropriate.
  • Use a person’s name in your conversation, when possible.
  • Ask questions, actively listen and paraphrase to clarify stakeholder concerns.
  • Speak with courtesy and respect and demonstrate sincerity by responding with caring, positive words and gestures.
    • “I see. . . “
    • “I can understand . . .”
    • “I sense your frustration.”
  • Value and respect the diversity of all stakeholders.
  • If someone needs directions, escort them to their destination when possible.
  • Ensure service areas are staffed during posted hours, post signage providing a time when employee(s) will be available including where to go for immediate assistance.

Positive Representative of RCTC:

  • Promote a positive public perception and communicate constructively.
  • Share your enthusiasm of RCTC with everyone you meet.
  • Wear current college provided nametags.
  • Wear appropriate professional attire for the work that you do.
    • Business style clothing and shoes are suggested, but due to the nature of duties performed, separate guidelines may be established for relevant departments (i.e. Maintenance or TSC.) 
    • Clothing considered provocative, exposing undergarments, or shirts advertising or representing items such as alcoholic beverages, sexual behavior or innuendos, tobacco products, profane language/gestures are not considered acceptable attire. 
    • Certain days may be declared dress down days or theme days.  On those days, jeans and a more casual approach to dressing is considered acceptable.
  • Keep cell phone ringtones professional.
  • Decorate work areas in a tasteful and non-offensive way.

Exceeding Expectations:

  • Determine needs by actively listening and clarifying requests.
  • Apologize for any inconvenience on behalf of the College.
  • Resolve issues or provide alternative solutions.
  • Discover opportunities to better serve stakeholders.

Communication Guidelines:

Telephone:

  • Know how to operate the College’s telephone system.
  • Telephones will be answered promptly (within three rings) when possible. 
  • All incoming calls will be answered with a consistent greeting such as “Admissions and Records, this is John.  How may I help you?”
  • Staff will listen and understand the nature of the requests before transferring a call.  Prior to the transfer, employees will inform the caller to whom they are being transferred and include the telephone number.
  • If a caller is on hold for an extended period of time, provide periodic updates.
  • Prioritize the needs of the callers.

Cell Phones:

  • While at work, avoid disturbing others by silencing your cell phone or putting it on vibrate. 
  • While in class, at meetings or other campus events,
    • Use cell phones only for important calls.
    • Let your cell phone calls go to voicemail. 
    • Find a private place to make cell phone calls where your conversations can’t be overhead. 

Voicemail:

  • Voicemail personal greetings will be kept current AND out-of-the-office greetings will be recorded when you are away from the desk or inaccessible for an entire business day.  The out-of-the-office greeting will include the name or department and phone number of someone that can assist the caller in your absence.

EXAMPLE OF APPROPRIATE VOICEMAIL PERSONAL GREETING:

You have reached the voicemail of John Doe in the Business Office.   I am with another caller or have temporarily stepped away. Please leave your name, student ID number, phone number, and a brief message and I will return your call as soon as possible.  If you wish, you may also e-mail me at _______@rctc.edu.  Thank you for calling RCTC.

EXAMPLE OF APPROPRIATE OUT-OF-THE-OFFICE PERSONAL GREETING:

You have reached the voicemail of John Doe in the Business Office.   I will be out of the office on Monday, February 7, 2011.  Your call is important, so please leave your name, student ID number, phone number, and a brief message and I will return your call as soon as possible. If you need immediate assistance, please contact Jane Smith at 507-555-5551.  Thank you for calling RCTC.

  • Voicemail shall be checked daily during business hours and acknowledged with a return call promptly. Exceptions may occur during high-volume cycles or academic breaks.
  • If the caller's message requires a lengthy follow-up, return the call and inform them that you have received the message and will follow-up within two business days.
  • Use appropriate courteous closures
    • Thank you,
    • Have a great day,
    • Respectfully yours,
    • Warm regards,

Written communications:

Letters, memorandums and internal student support correspondence will be written on RCTC branded documents that includes the required MnSCU tagline for all communication:  A member of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities System. Check for spelling and grammar.

Templates can be downloaded from the College J Drive at: J:\forms\College Relations\Microsoft Word Templates\Letterhead. Responses to written inquires shall be made within five business days.  Responses to e-mails shall be made within one business day. 

Never assume stakeholders are familiar with College used acronyms and terminologies; hence avoid the use of such jargon when possible.

Letters:

  • Letters shall include:
    • Date
    • Recipient's complete name and address
    • Salutation
    • The response in the body of the letter shall be clear and informative
    • The final paragraph of the letter may include a person's name and telephone number to call if additional information is needed or if the recipient has more questions.
    • Appropriate courteous closure (Sincerely, Regards, Thank You, etc.)
    • Typed signature name
    • If applicable: "enclosure" or "attachment" notation and "copy - cc:"

Memorandums:

  • Shall include:
    • Date
    • Recipient’s name
    • Sender’s name
    • Subject in the heading
    • The response in the body of the memorandum

E-mails:

  • E-mail messages will be checked daily during the business week.
  • If the e-mail message requires a lengthy follow-up, inform the sender that you have received the message and will follow-up within two business days. Exceptions may occur during high-volume cycles.
  • If the answer requires a response from another employee:
    • acknowledge receipt of the message
    • note that the message has been forwarded to the appropriate department, include the name and e-mail address of the individual that will be responding
    • include a closing statement giving them the option to contact you if they need additional assistance
  • Keep messages clear, courteous, and concise.
  • A letter format with a salutation should  be included
    • ________(name):
  • Use appropriate courteous closures
    • Thank you,
    • Have a great day,
    • Respectfully yours,
    • Warm regards,
  • Wallpaper is not appropriate on e-mails.
    • Upon replying all formatting is lost, double spaces are added, and looks unprofessional
    • Technology issues with the amount of storage required to deliver the image
    • Professional business messages look best when text is displayed on a clean white background.  Anything else runs the risk of distracting from the message content and can make it difficult to read.
    • The wrong background can devalue the image of an e-mail piece
  • Refrain from using quotes and sayings as part of the signature block.
    • E-mails are considered legal documents and are saved as scanned documents in student files
  • Attachments shall be used sparingly and are not necessary to use if the message is the same. 
    • Smart phones may not have the same programs to open or read attachments.
    • Technology issues with the amount of storage required to deliver attachments
    • URL links to websites and/or applications are highly encouraged. 
  • Signature Block for external recipients should be more formal than that for internal recipients and should include name, title, department, Rochester Community and Technical College, address, telephone number, and e-mail address.
    • Consider including the RCTC’s vanity URL of www.facebook.com/MyRCTC to help stakeholders become aware of our social media presence for campus news and events.
    • You may reduce formality after second interaction.

External Example (FORMAL)

Internal Example (INFORMAL)

John Doe, Customer Service Specialist
Admissions and Records
Rochester Community and Technical College
851 30th Avenue SE
Rochester, MN 55904-4999
(507) 555-5555
john.doe@rctc.edu
www.rctc.edu | www.facebook.com/MyRCTC

John Doe, Customer Service Specialist
Admissions and Records
 (507) 555-5555

  • When you are away from work for more than one day, an internal and external out-of-office e-mail greeting needs to be used that reflects your absence and contact information for another employee who can provide immediate assistance. 

EXAMPLE:

Greetings,

You are receiving this response automatically to inform you that I will be out of the office on Monday, February 7, 2011.  I will be unavailable to check e-mails while I am away, but will respond once back in the office.

If you need immediate assistance during my absence, please contact Jane Smith, Admission and Records, at 507-555-5551 or via e-mail at jane.smith@rctc.edu.

John Doe, Customer Service Specialist
Admissions and Records
Rochester Community and Technical College
851 30th Avenue SE
Rochester, MN 55904-4999
(507) 555-5555
www.rctc.edu | www.facebook.com/MyRCTC
john.doe@rctc.edu 

  • If you need to share highly confidential and sensitive information through e-mail, include a disclaimer statement in the e-mail message. The disclaimer statement should read as follows:

This electronic message (and any attachments) is intended solely for the use of the individual or entity to whom they are addressed. If the reader of this message is not the intended recipient, or an employee or agent responsible for delivering the message to the intended recipient, be aware that any disclosure, dissemination, distribution or copying of this communication, or the use of its contents, is not authorized and is strictly prohibited. If you have received this communication and are not the intended recipient, please notify the sender immediately and permanently delete the original message from your e-mail system.

  • If a division or department uses an automatic response mechanism to acknowledge receipt of e-mails, an example of an appropriate response would be:

The Office of ________________ is in receipt of your e-mail through the RCTC website.  Your comments and/or questions are important to us.  Be assured that you will receive a response to your inquiry as soon as possible.  Thank you for contacting RCTC, and have a good day!

  • There should be no expectation of privacy, and the State of Minnesota reserves the right to audit e-mail communications of all employees. 

Confidentiality:

  • Maintaining confidentiality in the workplace as it pertains to written and verbal discussions of issues is the law.
  • Store and archive confidential materials in compliance with legal requirements.
  • Discuss confidential or sensitive information about students, employees, or other stakeholders privately and only with those who have a valid need to know.
  • Ensure conversations are appropriate and professional at all times.
  • Be respectful of the confidentiality regulations and do not request exceptions just because you are employed by the College or have access to confidential information. 
  • Keep your work area clear of any documents considered confidential even if you leave your work area momentarily.  Remember, snoops and thieves can be clever and persistent.

Positive Relationships:

  • Understand the power of teamwork by involving and encouraging others.
  • Seek collaboration with others to answer questions or resolve issues when necessary.  Communicate rationale for decisions.
  • Demonstrate strong interpersonal skills.
    • Be aware of your tone of communication (both verbal and non-verbal) and avoid getting defensive.
    • Be respectful and non-confrontational with others.
    • Work through conflicts
  • Recognize the importance and contributions of colleagues.
  • Encourage each other in the continuum toward achieving RCTC Standards of Excellence.
  • Treat others the way you would want to be treated.

Pride in Campus:

  • Maintain a welcoming environment.
  • Help keep the Campus litter free.
  • Signs or postings should appear professional and follow posting guidelines.
  • Return unused equipment to its proper place or notify the appropriate department.

Welcome Feedback:

  • Acknowledge suggestions or concerns from stakeholders, and address it or direct it to the appropriate area/department.
  • Value innovation and continuously seek opportunities to enhance the college or work experience by contributing to the Idea Hive at:  https://secure.rctc.edu/ideahive/.

Return to RCTC Service Standards

 

Last Updated: October 7, 2014

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