HRO 128 FAQ's

1. What is HR 128?
HRO 128 is the Human Resources Policy that strongly encourage employees or staff at the University of Tennessee to complete a minimum of 32 hours of job- and career-related training per calendar year. HRO 128 applies to exempt and non-exempt employees, regular, full and part time. The training requirement for part-time employees may be prorated.

Supervisors will be evaluated through the performance review process on the professional growth and development of their employees. The training for individual employees should be planned during the performance review.

2. Does the training have to be job related?
The training should relate to your present position or enhance your skills for future job growth.

3. How will HRO 128 fit into my annual performance review?
During your annual performance review, you and your supervisor should discuss your training needs. A training plan should be developed to ensure you achieve your minimum of 32 hours.

4. What types of classes count toward 32 hours?
Many opportunities are available: (1) professional development courses; (2) conferences and seminars; (3) e-learning classes: (4) training held within departments; (5) training provided by outside consultants and vendors; (6) IRIS classes; (7) computer classes.

5. What courses will not count toward HRO 128?
Courses to receive college credit; departmental improvements or changes presented at a staff meeting not related to professional development. For example, implementing a new specialized departmental form or sharing of knowledge to colleagues from a seminar attended by one or more staff members. Social organizations and church-sponsored programs will not count.

6. Why can't academic courses be applied toward my 32 hours?
Academic courses are geared toward earning a degree. Professional development classes are more for providing new skills sets and professional growth.

7. Do classes offered outside the university count toward my 32 hours?
With supervisory approval, classes both within and outside the university will count toward 32 hours. Conferences attended will also count. To receive credit for classes, you should fill out the Request for Additional Credit and submit to the Office of Human Resources for entering into the IRIS data base.

8. How do I enroll in e-learning classes?
These classes are free and may be taken online by using your UTC ID. UT has partnered with SkillSoft to offer the highest quality in on-line learning. More than 800 courses are available, including computer and technical courses; leadership, managerial and supervisory classes; and communication classes. Visit to learn more.

9. How many hours are counted for e-learning classes?
You will be given the suggested number of hours associated with the e-learning class. The suggested number of hours for each e-learning class is listed in the Course Catalog.

10. Why is there a minimum number of 32 hours of training?
The 32 hours is the minimum requirement. For the purposes of career growth and of meeting departmental goals, employees may take more than the 32 hours if approved by their supervisor.

11. Do required training classes count toward the minimum?
Yes, required training courses, including safety classes, count toward the minimum. Supervisors and employees should plan for training during the performance review process. The 32 hours is a minimum, and employees are encouraged to complete what they need to achieve growth for themselves and their departments.

12. Must I have supervisor's approval to attend training classes?
Yes, your supervisor should support your training. The employee and the supervisor together should plan the training.

13. What if my supervisor doesn't allow me to attend training?
Find out why your supervisor doesn't support your training. Your professional development should be addressed during your annual performance review. At that time, determine what your supervisor considers appropriate professional development for your position. If a disagreement exists as to what constitutes appropriate training, you should confer with the Office of Human Resources regarding options to pursue to resolve such a disagreement and to facilitate professional development as encouraged by HRO 128.

14. Will the Career Development Fund assist in paying for training?
Yes, the career development fund, which is a reimbursement fund for non-exempt staff members, may help pay for classes in certain situations. Nevertheless, departments are expected to budget for training during the annual budgeting process. If the department cannot pay for training, the employee must request funding before the event. The maximum reimbursement for an employee during the fiscal year if $150. (Reimbursement is limited to fund availability.) Visit the website for guidelines and an application.

15. If I have a question about training classes or HRO 128, whom may I contact?
Phone the Office of Human Resources for more information.