Education and Employee-Development Policies
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It is the policy of the Laboratory to assist and encourage employees to obtain
skills, knowledge, and abilities that increase the effectiveness of work performance
in their present position and improve their career opportunities within the
The Human Resources Department will assess Laboratory-wide employee development
needs and, based on the availability of resources, sponsor appropriate, relevant
training and development programs to meet such needs. Special emphasis will
be placed on developmental activities designed to help supervisors, group leaders,
department heads, and division directors make good-faith efforts towards meeting
the Laboratorys equal employment opportunity and affirmative action goals.
The Equal Opportunity Administrator will review and evaluate effectiveness of
the employee development programs in relation to the Laboratorys equal
employment opportunity and affirmative action goals, and sponsor additional
special training as part of the Laboratorys Equal Opportunity Program.
- Definition. Position-related programs are directly related to the
work assignments or conditions of the employee's current position. (See
Paragraph G, below, for information on professional
licensing, and certification training and associated fees.)
Responsibility. In improving performance or mastering responsibilities
in the present job, the supervisor takes the lead by identifying development
objectives along with corresponding action plans. This is done in conjunction
with the employee performance evaluation process.
Eligibility. All career employees are eligible for position-related
programs. Employees in noncareer appointments are
eligible for position-related programs only when such training is specifically
necessary for such employees/contract workers to perform their respective
and employees of contract labor agencies are eligible only for Laboratory-provided
safety training related to their assignments at the Laboratory.
- Definition. Career-related programs are related to the development
of skills, knowledge, and other qualifications that prepare an employee
for other positions within the Laboratory for which an employee (as evaluated
by the supervisor, department head, and the Human Resources Head or designee)
might be an effective competitor.
- Responsibility. In career planning and development, the employee
takes the lead by self-assessing skills, values, career interests, and
choices. After completion of the self-assessment, the employee discusses
with the supervisor areas of interest to be developed. The supervisor
is encouraged to act as the coach and advisor to the employee, helping
to map out agreed-on developmental objectives along with corresponding
- Eligibility. All career employees are eligible for career-related
programs. Employees in noncareer appointments and agency-employed contract
labor workers are not eligible for career-related programs.
Educational enrichment programs are related to an employee's personal or career
interests that are not related to Laboratory positions for which an employee
might be an effective competitor. For example, a course such as music would
be considered an educational enrichment program. Educational enrichment programs
are the employee's responsibility and are not eligible for benefits under this
- Attendance at all courses, seminars, and conferences of an instructional
nature given by accredited universities and colleges, institutes, professional
associations, and commercial training organizations is considered part of
the Laboratory's education and training activities and may be part of a formal
employee development plan.
- For administrative purposes, attendance at scientific meetings, professional
society meetings, research conferences, and industrial conventions and shows
is considered a work assignment and is not necessarily part of a development
1. Annual Plan
Every employee's annual performance evaluation must include development goals
and a plan for attaining those goals during the coming year.
2. Formal Plan
- Every career employee is eligible to request a formal development plan.
A formal development plan is developed by the employee and his/her supervisor
and should be realistic and state job or career goals that are attainable
within the Laboratory's job classification structure. Plans should be structured
so that completion of the development program should result in greater employee
capability. Formal plans often include a time frame longer than one year.
- When an employee takes three or more Laboratory-supported courses or training
programs in a fiscal year, the development plan must be formalized by using
the Employee Development Plan form. At a minimum, the plan should include
developmental objectives and corresponding action plans for improving or
mastering performance in the current position, qualifying for other Laboratory
positions, or obtaining a specific degree or certificate of value to the
Laboratory's mission (see Paragraph (F)(1), below).
1. On-Site Training
- Intradepartmental Training. A division director or department head
is responsible for arranging specialized training with a department or division.
Assistance or advice in any phase of a desired program may be obtained from
the Training Administrator in the Human
- Interdepartmental Training. Various organizational units within
the Laboratory, including the Environment, Health, and Safety Division;
the Computing Sciences Directorate; and the Human Resources Department, are
responsible for developing and/or providing training programs to Laboratory
employees in their areas of expertise and that are required by law, or will
enhance employee performance. Procedures for attending interdepartmental
training may be found on the Employee
Self-Service Web site.
- Apprenticeship Training Programs and Internships. The Workforce
Diversity Office is responsible for administering apprenticeship training
programs, other special skills training, and internships.
2. Off-Site Training
- With the approval of his or her supervisor and department head or division
director, an employee may attend off-site training (e.g., outside seminars
and workshops) that will be of direct benefit to the employee's assignment.
The division director or department head will approve attendance at off-site
training only when the benefits to the Laboratory will, in his or her judgment,
more than offset the costs involved, when the required skill or knowledge
is not readily available through Laboratory training resources, and when the
employee's time away from the Laboratory will not adversely impact current
- The division will pay course fees, travel, and all other expenses as necessary.
- See HR Employee Development and Training for procedures for requesting off-site
3. LBNL Mentoring Policy
LBNL Managers should engage in informal mentoring of promising and ambitious
employees who want to take an initiative in improving their professional skills
The objective of the mentoring process is to:
- Foster the employee’s professional development.
- Encourage cross-functional training and networking.
The role of the mentor is to:
- Be a coach and take an interest in their employee's development.
- Help set personal-development expectations, and work with the employee
to design appropriate career-path plans.
- Be available as a respected resource from which the employee can draw knowledge,
experience, and wisdom.
The role of the employee is to:
- Take the initiative by regularly interacting with the mentor.
- Monitor existing skills and identify the future skill set required
to achieve both career plan objectives and those of the business.
- Gain the respect of the mentor through effective utilization of the advice
F. COLLEGE DEGREES, CERTIFICATE PROGRAMS, AND
information and clarification of the policies below may be found here.
Employees should often review the information contained therein, as it may
change without notice.
Career employees who have passed probation may take college-level, certificate,
and continuing education courses as described below. Satisfactory job performance
is a prerequisite for participation in these Tier 1 and Tier 2 programs.
1. Tier 1
College-level courses leading to an academic degree (A.A., B.S., M.B.A., M.S.,
Ph.D., etc.) or a certificate
(Project Management, Biotechnology Business and Marketing, Java Programming,
Degree courses must be offered by an accredited
college or university. Certificate courses must be offered by an
accredited college or university, university extension program, or recognized
professional society. Continuing education units (CEUs) may be reimbursed under
Tier 1 when they are part of an approved degree or certificate
program. These may be either position- or career-related programs (see paragraphs
2. Tier 2
Career-related academic programs not leading to an academic degree or a
certificate. Courses must be offered by an accredited college or university.
Continuing education units (CEUs) may be reimbursed under Tier 2 only when
offered by a university or college continuing-education program.
3. Employee Development Plans
- Tier 1
The employee must have an Employee
Development Plan approved by his or her supervisor, division director
or Associate Laboratory Director for Operations, and the Human Resources
Head or designee.
- Tier 2
The employee must have an Employee
Development Plan approved by his or her supervisor, division director
or Associate Laboratory Director for Operations, and the Human
Resources Head or designee, if taking three or more classes in a fiscal year.
- Basis for Approval of Employee Development Plans
The following will be taken into consideration when reviewing employee development
- Relevance to the Laboratory’s mission
- Mutual benefit to the employee’s career and the
long-term interests of the Laboratory
- Length of the employee’s employment
- Employee’s past performance and potential
- A reasonable expectation that the employee
will remain in the employ of the Laboratory for a sufficient period of time
to provide a fair return for the training costs
- The proposed curriculum and timetable for completion are realistic
- The department/division’s work needs can be met during any
employee absences due to attending class or other absences related to his/her
An employee who is denied approval of an Employee Development Plan based
on paragraphs (F)(3)(c)(i)(vi) above may request
review of the denial by the Head of Human Resources, who will consult
with the division director as appropriate. Employees who are denied based
on paragraph (F)(3)(c)(vii) above may not request
a review by the Head of Human Resources but may resubmit their plan at
a later date when the department's or division's work needs may have changed.
Denial of an Employee Development Plan based on paragraphs (F)(3)(c)(i)(vi) above
is not subject to review under the grievance or administrative policies
(see RPM §2.05(C) or (D)).
The employee must exhibit satisfactory progress towards attainment of
the degree or certificate for continued eligibility under Tier 1, with
the understanding that unanticipated department/division work needs may
affect that progress.
4. Fee Reimbursement
- Employees must complete the Tuition
Reimbursement Request form, and obtain
the necessary approvals before registering for classes. Classes taken
without prior approval will not be reimbursed.
Employees may be reimbursed for tuition/education fees, flat course
fees, such as charges for UC Extension courses, and laboratory fees
when the employee submits proof of successful course completion and
receipts for payment of fees to the Training Administrator in the Human
Resources Department. Nonresident tuition or other fees not listed
are not reimbursable. Successful completion is receipt of at least
a “C” for
undergraduate work or a “B” for graduate work in accordance
with the system of grading used by the institution when the “A–F” system
is used. Grades of C– (for undergraduate study) or B– (for
graduate study) do not qualify for reimbursement. If
there is a choice between receiving a letter grade or a “Pass/Fail” evaluation,
the employee must take the letter grade.
- Tier 1 reimbursement is 100% of reimbursable
- Tier 2 reimbursement is two-thirds of reimbursable
- Reimbursement is also allowed when an employee is forced
to withdraw from a course because of work requirements, provided he/she
submits evidence from the instructor that his/her work in the course
was satisfactory at the time of forced withdrawal.
- When necessary, the Head of Human
Resources or the Training Administrator may advance payment of the
costs, provided the employee agrees to return the payment if the he/she
iis unable to provide evidence of satisfactory completion.
- Employees who are eligible for the University of California
Reduced-Fee Enrollment Benefit as described in Paragraph
take advantage of that benefit.
- Employees who terminate their employment voluntarily before the
end of the quarter or semester are not eligible for reimbursement of
fees, and must repay any advance provided under Paragraph
F(4)(d), above. An
employee who is involuntarily laid off and was notified of the layoff
after the beginning of the class will either be reimbursed for tuition/course
fees paid in advance or are not obligated to repay any advance payment
of the costs received.
5. Time Off with Pay
Time off with pay may be granted when the employee's absence will not adversely
affect progress of work, in accordance with the following provisions:
- The employee must remain in career status during the entire quarter
- The course or courses must be listed on the Tuition Reimbursement Request
and approved before registration for each academic quarter or semester.
- Time off to attend and register for approved courses may be allowed
only when such courses cannot reasonably be taken outside the employee's
scheduled working hours.
- Time off with pay may not exceed six hours per week, including time
for travel and registration. Time off with pay is not allowed for study,
library, or faculty consultation time. Additional time required must be
accounted for by an adjusted work schedule or by use of vacation credit.
- Time off to
take Web-based courses is
6. University of California
Reduced-Fee Enrollment Benefit
- Any career employee who has passed probation and who is employed at least
50% time can apply to take courses at a two-thirds reduction of the full-time
University of California Registration and Education fee on undergraduate-
or graduate-level courses in
a regular degree-granting program. The course load may not exceed nine units
or three regular session University courses per term, whichever provides
the greater benefit to the employee.
- The employee must satisfy the University of California residency requirements;
otherwise, the employee is subject to the full nonresident fee. A waiver of
the nonresident fee will not be given.
- The employee must apply for admission by contacting the appropriate UC
Office of Admissions to obtain appropriate forms and information for entrance.
- Eligible employees attending the University of California must use the reduced
fee benefit. Employees must inform the Training Administrator of their intent
to attend the University before each quarter or semester.
- See the Human
Resources Forms Web page
for procedures for obtaining the fee reduction.
- The reduced fee is also available for non-job-related courses, but no
other benefits of this policy apply, and time off with pay may not be granted
to attend these classes.
7. Procedures and Forms
See HR Employee
Development & Training for procedures and forms for Tiers 1 and
2 college degrees, certificate
programs, and college-level courses.
8. Other Academic Programs and CEU Courses
programs and CEU courses not leading to an academic degree or a certificate
are considered off-site training (see Paragraphs F(1)–(2)).
For the purposes of this section, government licenses and/or professional certifications
are those licenses and certifications required by the employee to hold his or
her current position as documented in the position description.
2. Continuing Education Courses
Continuing education unit (CEU) courses required for the maintenance of
a professional license or certification as noted above are considered position-related
courses. The course must be approved by the licensing or certifying agency.
The request for course fee reimbursement is the same as for all other position-related
training (see HR
Employee Development & Training for forms and procedures).
3. License Fees
Fees for license or certification renewals as defined in Paragraph
(G)(1) above are an allowable expenditure. The request is made in writing to the
Office of the Chief Financial Officer and must include:
- Request for Issuance of Check form with valid project ID and approval;
- Endorsement by the cognizant division director that the cost is allowable
as cited; and
- Copy of the license renewal or issuance documentation.
To promote the continuing professional growth and competence of senior administrative
professional (job titles identified as "professional" in the Human
Resources Information System) and scientific staff members, the Laboratory
Director may grant professional research or teaching leave to a limited number
of employees. Approval and recommendation from the division director must
be obtained before submitting the request to the Laboratory Director. Approval
for such leave will be based on evidence that the Laboratory will benefit
from the proposed work and that the candidate will continue employment at
Berkeley Lab or another DOE-funded employer for a reasonable period following
the leave. The leave may be spent at appropriate institutions either within
or outside the United States.
The candidate must have outstanding professional ability and propose a firm
plan of study, teaching, or research that is clearly relevant to the interests
of the Laboratory and within the individual's competence. The candidate must
also have been continuously employed by the Laboratory for four years or more.
University of California faculty members are eligible to participate in this
program if their Laboratory appointment is at 50% or more time during the
Salary payments made by the Laboratory to an employee for professional research
or teaching leave may not exceed the following schedule:
Years of service or years since last professional research or teaching
Up to 6 months
In the case of a University faculty member with a less than 50% campus appointment,
professional research or teaching leave payments may be approved to the extent
necessary to offset sabbatical privileges for which the faculty member is ineligible.
The period of leave will not exceed 12 months.
Travel expenses will not be reimbursed by the Laboratory.
Vacation and sick-leave credits will not accrue to the employee during the
The Laboratory Director may grant professional renewal leave to a limited
number of Laboratory managers or scientific personnel who have made outstanding
contributions in furtherance of Laboratory objectives. The purpose of professional
renewal leave is to provide these individuals an opportunity to attach themselves
to external organizations and/or programs for the purpose of professional
revitalization and development. These temporary external assignments will
be approved based on technical and programmatic relevance, to ensure mutual
benefit to both the Laboratory and the employee. The following general provisions
- The candidate must be a recognized senior scientific or management
series employee for whom it would not normally be practical to utilize either
the college-level courses program or the professional research or teaching
- The period of leave must not exceed six months.
- Salary payment, vacation, sick leave, and other benefits will continue
as if the employee were in full-duty status at the Laboratory.
- The Laboratory may provide travel support in accordance with Laboratory
travel policy (see RPM §11.08 (Travel
. The official or current version is located in the online LBNL Requirements and Policies Manual.
Printed or electronically transmitted copies are not official. Users are responsible for working with the latest approved revision.