Henry Clay Owen Employee of the Quarter

Each quarter University Financial Services selects an employee of the quarter from nominations received within the deparment and from campus.  The Henry Clay Owen "Nice" Award is named after the former Treasurer of the University.  The "NICE" award stands for noteworthy performance, innovation & improvement, customer service & communication and excellence.  If you would like to nominate a University Financial Services employee please fill out this form and e-mail to UFS@uky.edu.


Employee of the Quarter (July to September 2017) - Renee Dyer, Payroll Services

Renee was nominated by her manager.  Read below to see what they had to say about Renee!


During the past quarter Renee implemented three new documents in an attempt to collect more accurate data and to improve Payroll Services tax decisions. Renee created a robust Tax Determination Questionnaire for Non Resident Alien (NRA) employees to complete which collects their entire travel history and immigration information for visits to the United States. Originally Payroll Services received copies of NRA documentation from each department, which was many times incomplete. The new document completion is required of all NRA employees which allows Payroll Services to review the individual’s complete history in order to make a determination of the NRA’s eligibility for tax treaty and/or FICA exemption. Renee also took Payroll Services original Local City Tax form and created two separate tax forms which are Local City Tax – Work Location and Local City Tax – Royster Memo.  The Local City Tax – Work Location form was transformed to improve employee local tax clarity / understanding and offer multiple work location percentage options. The Local City Tax - Royster Memo form was also transformed to improve employee clarity / understanding by separating the various Royster Memo requirements into a check box format which more clearly identifies the employee’s eligibility.

I     INNOVATION and IMPROVEMENT (self or continuous process)

Due to the creation and implementation of the three forms previously mentioned Payroll Services data collection process has been improved which has led to more accurate employee tax assessments. This was confirmed when several departments contacted Payroll Services to inquire about the new Royster Memo form and the determination of fewer students eligible for the exemption.

Renee also inquired about the possibility of issuing employee payments through the Accounts Payable ACH process for payroll returned direct deposits. She setup meetings with Purchasing and Accounts Payable to determine the feasibility and was able to implement the process during the past quarter. The new process ensures employee receipt of funds, time and resource savings due to checks not being printed and less foot traffic in Payroll Services allowing other tasks to be completed.


Renee’s desire to provide the University’s NRA population with better customer service was a driving factor for the creation of the Tax Determination Questionnaire. In the past, incomplete immigration documentation of entry into the U.S. has resulted in employees owing past due taxes. This many times has caused a financial hardship to these employees.  The complete immigration information supplied on the new document allows Payroll Services to make a more accurate assessment of the employee’s eligibility for tax exemption. The questionnaire has also allowed the opportunity for Payroll Services to explain the purpose of the form which provides our NRA employees with a greater understanding of U.S. taxation.

In past years employees have requested Payroll Services to direct deposit their funds into their bank account instead of issuing a manual check, which we have been unable to offer. The new process of issuing returned direct deposit funds via ACH to employee bank accounts has answered this request. By offering this new option we have improved our customer satisfaction as well as saving employees a trip to Payroll Services. Renee has also requested to expand the program to include petty cash checks which should be implemented in the near future.


Describe specific examples demonstrating quality and excellence in work performance.

Renee’s desire to increase work efficiency and improve processes led her to redesign our Local City Tax Form and create the Tax Determination Questionnaire.  This has led to excellence in our collection of tax data for accurate employee taxation and reporting. Renee maintains high expectations and holds herself to a high standard of excellence in her job performance. She demonstrates these qualities in her everyday work and interactions with customers.


For a list of previous winners click here.