MNIT Meet and Confer minutes Feb 6, 2019

Publish Date

MNIT M&C 2/6/19

MAPE Members & Staff: Jed Becher – MNIT @ DNR; Axelina Swenson– MNIT Central; Gary Wass – MNIT @ DOT; Kassie – MNIT @ DHS; Lyz Martin – Business Agent; Usman; Greg Naumann – MNIT @ MDE; Nic Frey – Business Agent

MNIT Staff: Chad Thuet – MNIT Human Resources Director; Brian Fitch – MNIT Human Resources; Justin Kaufman – MNIT Assistant Commissioner; Nicole Schultz – MNIT Labor Relations; Yia Her – MNIT Labor Relations; Jon Eichten – MNIT Deputy Commissioner


Old Business

  1. Service Desk Consolidation
    • Conversations – some agencies are interested in this as they run their own service desks.
  • Dependent on Governor’s budget – need to see impacts of further consolidation. Budget should be completed mid-February; will have a better idea at that time.
  • Want to better leverage the consolidation and the goal is to have the least impact on staff. There will be some transition; however a lot of things would remain the same. Take advantage of some of the good work happening at the MNIT partnering agency’s service desks; want to leverage that knowledge at Central.
  • Want to provide services as good, or better, than present. Want to keep business partners’ interests in mind. Don’t want to lose good practices as a result of further consolidation.
  1. MNIT Contracting
    • Discussion this morning in the financial governance team.
    • There is no plan to bring in DHS to contracting/procurement because of the complexity involved. Nevertheless, will continue discussing options with DHS to move in that direction. It has been made clear to DHS (DCT in particular) that contracts should be done collaboratively rather than just DHS. MNIT will be getting more involved; MNIT’s name will be on the contracts, especially the larger contracts. Will be a transition that will happen over time. Want to bring people in rather than forcing things on them.
    • MNIT’s Buy-IT and Procurement units have been consolidated into one organization under a Division Director. Previously, Buy-IT and procurement were two different work units managed by different supervisors. This change is expected to improve overall procurement processes and provide more redundancies, consistency and support.
  2. MetroPass Subsidies
  • Can we do a survey of non-Capitol complex staff to see if they either have or want a MetroPass?
    • Chad and Axelina will work together to create and send out a survey to learn more about demand.
  1. Brown & Bigelow
  • Lighting – clarified there is not always lighting in work areas. Will check on that.
  • Will ask DHS to perform a fire drill in the spring rather than waiting until Fall
  • Elevator – Will look into freight elevator and where it leads, so people with accessibility concerns can access it.
  • Ask that MNIT communicate work order process to MnIT staff for building concerns
    • Kassie will get the work order process to Chad
  • If we take a crack at coming up with a better shuttle bus schedule, MNIT will help support it?
    • Yes – Who came up with the route? Did DHS come up with the route, or does Lorenz run the route that way for a reason?
  • White noise – Resistance has been due to cost. Justin suggested talking to someone at Dept of Admin Facilities regarding options. Chad will contact Chris Guevin, Dept of Admin’s Director of Plant Management Services. Andi will talk to BCA about their proposed pink noise.
  1. New M&C members still need to be added and old members removed from the meeting notice
  • Chad is working on it. Jed will send list to Chad who will get the information to Justin’s administrative assistant, Nick.
  1. Including MNIT employees in home-based agency employee surveys
  • We’re partners and need to respect agencies’ decisions about this. Ideally, agencies would do a separate survey for the agency employees and one for their MNIT employees. Want the feedback from MNIT employees to come back to MNIT HR. (Want Chad/HR to know about the surveys before they go out.) MAPE can say MNIT does not oppose including MNIT staff in host agency surveys.
  1. Rotation of MNIT staff
  • Definitely in MNIT’s plan to pursue. Will be more of an opportunity than an assignment.
  • Management will engage with MAPE and preview its plans before rolling anything out.
  1. Onboarding and New Employee Orientation at other agencies
  • MAPE would like MNIT employees to be involved in host agency New Employee Orientation training topics that apply to the work location (policies, culture, etc).
  • HR is collecting business requirements and developing procedure for onboarding new staff. MNIT will be including need to know locally based requirements that should be included. Will work to make onboarding as efficient and effective as possible. Will be letting agencies know to talk to MNIT HR about any issues with MNIT employees.
  • Want to have clarity about how to handle conflicts between MNIT policies and agency policies, how should the existence of two sets of policies be communicated to staff? Chad explained that you are MNIT employees and should always follow MNIT policies. If the local agency has a policy that conflicts with MNIT or a policy that does not exist in MNIT, you should reach out to MNIT HR for clarification. MNIT HR will work with the local agency to either incorporate the policy into MNIT’s rubric and/or explain to that agency partner why MNIT’s policy is different. You will be held accountable for all statewide policies and MNIT policies, all of which can be found on MNIT’s Intranet. If you have any questions, you should contact MNIT HR.

New Business

  1. Weather concerns
  • Will work to communicate agency discretion and to remind supervisors there can be flexibility to having staff in the office if the work allows.


  1. Critical service interruption emails
  • There is some concern about the number of emails, but the main concern is that there was no communication ahead of time that the emails would be changing. They started coming from a different email address and the branding doesn’t show up so it looks like spam. An example was forwarded to Chad who will try to get this fixed.


  1. Staff moved from Centennial to Pine Street
  • A number of staff retained their parking at COB as they were initially told they would be coming back. Plans changed and staff will be at Pine Street for four years. Chad had tried to work with Admin on the parking issue to get a temporary reprieve on parking charges during the transition, but Admin refused. So he went as far as not changing staff work locations when staff first moved so staff could retain their coveted ramp parking spaces without losing them. M&C to provide a list of impacted staff to management. Management will take a look at it and discuss options; however, in the meantime, management has provided shared parking passes for COB for Pine street staff to use for their frequent visits to COB.


  1. Enterprise Service Desk ticketing concerns
  • Concerns about timeliness of resolutions
  • These are examples of why we need optimization
  • New leadership has been adding staff and resources to improve Service Desk service
  • Will look into Service Desk structure/process to see if there are leads that can be contacted for more information about a ticket. Will also check in about how to respond appropriately when staff don’t know the answer.
  • Management provided a gentle reminder that we are all on the same team and should be helping and supporting our Enterprise colleagues wherever we can (and vice versa). This may include responding to local partners that you are sorry to hear that their problems/concerns weren’t fixed and offering to follow up with your MNIT colleagues at the Enterprise to problem solve.


  1. Employee recognition policy
  • The Employee Recognition Committee can be contacted at:
  • Explained that there have been examples whereby agency employees on projects received monetary awards from their agency, but the MNIT employees working side-by-side on the same project did not receive anything.
  • Chad advised MAPE to send an email to the committee with suggestions.
  • In addition, MAPE requested that major MNIT awards such as project of the year or employee of the year have a monetary award attached to them. MAPE was directed to send the suggestion to the ERC committee email above.


  1. MNIT Store
  • Management sees it as a good idea. Greg will work with Justin to get in contact with the procurement director. There were a small number of shirts ordered for State Fair volunteers so that might be a good resource.


  1. A committee member shared a story about MNIT @ DHS staff facing abuse from a DHS leader. MNIT leadership was not in the room as they were at Respectful Workplace training. MNIT leadership heard about what happened at the meeting and filed a Respectful Workplace complaint on behalf of the MNIT Partnering with DHS staff. The situation was handled well and MAPE appreciates the support for its MAPE staff at DHS.


  1. 360 Feedback to Supervisors


  1. What is the communication plan for communicating with temp unclassified staff whose appointments will be ending this year?
  • Employees are not being informed about their status in a timely manner, often going up to the last week before they are told if they are renewed, made permanent of going to be let go.
  • Chad and Justin will talk about this and come up with a plan on how to handle this.