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CSU Policy/Written Directives Framework Initiative Update. Robyn Pennington, Chief of Staff, Business and Finance Michael P. Redmond, Acting Assistant Vice Chancellor, Headquarters Budget, Security , and Strategic Initiatives Chancellor’s Office. Background.

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csu policy written directives framework initiative update

CSU Policy/Written Directives Framework Initiative Update

Robyn Pennington, Chief of Staff, Business and Finance

Michael P. Redmond, Acting Assistant Vice Chancellor, Headquarters Budget, Security, and Strategic Initiatives

Chancellor’s Office

  • Project was initiated in late 2013
  • Review and refresh the framework governing the lifecycle of policies and directives issued by the CO
    • Executive Orders, Coded Memorandums, Technical Letters, the Integrated CSU Administrative Manual (ICSUAM) policies and other written directives
  • Goal: align, standardize, simplify and make accessible policies and directives that are issued from the CO
  • Still in discovery and framework development stage
cohasset associates
Cohasset Associates
  • The CO engaged Cohasset Associates to assist in outreach to CSU community and framework development
  • Cohasset specialized in records management – in business over 40 years
what are written directives
What are Written Directives?
  • Written directives must align with CSU’s mission and vision as well as laws and regulations
  • Written directives reflect the position of the CSU
    • Translate CSU value statements into operation
  • They are proposed to primarily consist of Executive Orders, Policies, Procedures and Guidelines
review process and discoveries
Review Process and Discoveries
  • Extensive interviews/meetings were conducted with stakeholders of the CSU
  • Data collected thus far from written directive developers and users indicates need and appetite for change
  • Primary pain points:
    • There are too many, and too many different types, of written directives
    • The conventions (the what, why, when and how) that guide the issuance of written directives are not consistent
    • Hard to discern what is really required
    • Written directive readability is hampered by style and format variations
    • Search functionality hinders access
    • Superseding vs updating – hard to find all the necessary pieces
review process and discoveries1
Review Process and Discoveries
  • Integrated CSU Administrative Manual (ICSUAM) framework was ‘voted’ by most interviewed stakeholders as the ideal and preferred electronic venue to house the refreshed framework and the directives
  • The current framework, its mechanics and processes will likely undergo a complete re-design
  • The following principles should be the foundation of the written directives governance framework:
    • Simplification/Alignment: limit the types and number of directives to the minimum necessary to support sound business judgment and compliance with laws and regulation
    • Standardization: provide a consistent process and format for written directives from development and implementation through evaluation and retirement
    • Accessibility:afford the CSU user community a straightforward means to search and access
    • Transparency: clarify accountabilities and responsibilities
    • Quality Control:review and assess; support continuous improvement
policy office
Policy Office?
  • Recommendation for Policy Office
    • Dedicated to and responsible for the oversight and implementation of the written directives governance framework:
      • Refine framework
        • Review and recommend enhancements and updates
      • Provide oversight, direction and input regarding all written directives
      • Monitor lifecycle phases
    • Oversee retrofit of existing directives
document hierarchy suggested approach
Document Hierarchy – Suggested Approach
  • Suggestion to discontinue Technical Letters, Coded Memoranda CSU Written Directives
    • If the direction they provide persists, documents would be re-mapped
    • The four types of written directives described below would comprise the CSU’s written directives hierarchy:
      • Executive Order
      • Policy
      • Procedure
      • Guideline
document hierarchy suggested approach1
Document Hierarchy – Suggested Approach

Executive Order

  • Of the four types of CSU written directives, an Executive Order enjoys narrow and preferential use
  • Used sparingly, an executive order would be issued in response to Board resolution, high level critical requirements or to delegate authority to high-level staff (presidents)
document hierarchy suggested approach2
Document Hierarchy – Suggested Approach


  • A policy stipulates a system-wide, non-discretionary course or method of action
  • A policy is shaped by and derived from legislation or regulation, standard or requirement
  • A policy will be written to be as short and concise as possible, generally no longer than three pages
document hierarchy suggested approach3
Document Hierarchy – Suggested Approach


  • A procedure is the roadmap used to make a policy actionable
  • In contrast to a policy, a procedure outlines a particular way of accomplishing something; an established way of doing things; a series of steps that, when followed in a definite, regular order, ensure consistent results
  • A procedure will be longer than a policy, but generally no longer than seven pages
document hierarchy suggested approach4
Document Hierarchy – Suggested Approach


  • A guideline provides internal work instructions that recommend practices or processes
  • Guidelines recommend an action based upon sound business judgment
  • Guidelines do not limit or substitute campus leadership from exercising sound judgment
  • Guidelines are intended only to be advisory and do not establish CSU Policy or create mandates requiring campus compliance
document hierarchy suggested approach5
Document Hierarchy – Suggested Approach

Revision Control

  • Revisions shouldnot necessitate a new and re-named written directive
  • Original specifications are maintained, eliminating the need to search for and review superseded versions
next steps
Next Steps
  • Leadership review and approval
    • Campus input
  • Policy office and implementation considerations
  • Definition of a metadata scheme and taxonomy to:
    • Manage the relationships between directives
    • Provide simple navigation between old and new directives
    • Correlate related directives
  • Retrofit existing directives into new framework
stakeholder feedback considerations
Stakeholder Feedback /Considerations
  • Distribution of policies
    • Identification of target audience, ability to opt in/out of communications regarding new/updated policies
  • Repository in a location that auxiliary personnel can access it too
  • Consideration at some level of the impact at the campus level (financial/human = cost of compliance) by policy creators
  • Consideration of audit finding that may or may not necessitate policy
    • Mitigation of risk
  • Others???????