University Launches ConnectU HR Portal

Platform offers robust functions for applicant searches, performance reviews, more

OXFORD, Miss. – The University of Mississippi’s Department of Human Resources has launched ConnectU, a new web portal that offers more tools for supervisors to provide feedback for employees and more resources to help employees develop in their careers, among other features. 

ConnectU, which is an SAP Successfactors program, has a performance and engagement module that will be launched Oct. 1, and it also will be used for staff performance reviews. The platform is being used by job search committees during the applicant screening process.

HR is conducting training sessions for supervisors who will use the new web portal, which is the fruit of much discussion and a campus focus group. 

“ConnectU is proving to be a powerful tool benefiting our applicants, employees and supervisors,” said Andrea M. Jekabsons, associate director of human resources. “The platform offers modern technology and a user-friendly experience. 

“While we anticipate everyone investing time to learn the new programs, the long-term benefits will outweigh the temporary inconvenience.”

The performance and engagement module for ConnectU includes tools for new employees’ probationary review and extended probationary review. It also can be used for progressive discipline notices, exit interview questionnaires, new hire checklists and staff performance reviews, including quarterly checks and mid-year reviews.

The new performance review tool is more than just a form and offers more options for supervisors to provide feedback and employees to track their growth and set goals. 

ConnectU was shaped heavily by feedback from surveys and a  focus group on the annual staff performance review process, Jekabsons said. The focus groups asked for the following, which were incorporated into ConnectU:

  • Value-based competencies that align with UM’s mission, vision, core values and creed
  • Mechanisms for feedback on a regular basis, which led the creation of options for quarterly check-ins, but not mandatory ones, with employees through ConnectU 
  • Being available year-round for managers to track performance
  • Ability to be customized by department objectives and job specific competencies 
  • Mechanisms to collect feedback as an opportunity for a supervisor’s manager to collect feedback from the supervisor’s employees as well as constituents on and off campus
  • Support of learning and development
  • More space for comments
  • At least one objective is required of employees
  • More training and computer access for non-computer-literate employees

For more information on ConnectU, visit the Department of Human Resources website.