David Boettner wrote “Chapter 5: Developing a Comprehensive Human Resources Program” for A Pastor’s Toolbox. He is the Vicar General for the Diocese of Knoxville and the pastor of the Cathedral. In his chapter, he outlines “a comprehensive human resources system” based on the U.S. Bishops’ 2005 document on lay ecclesial ministry, “Co-Workers in the Vineyard of the Lord.”
The goal of human resources management, according to Boettner, is “to turn our parishes into places where our employees love the work they do” (51). In order to meet this goal, he lays out six components of a comprehensive HR program:
- Recruitment. The good employer begins the search for talent with an accurate job description, a skilled search committee, and a thorough interview of applicants.
- Orientation and Support. The parish should make an effort to integrate and assist a new employee.
- Evaluation and Feedback. Every employee should be assessed annually and given a performance review memo.
- Compensation. “Every employee should make living wage with health-care, sick leave, vacation time, and provision for retirement” (59).
- Transition and Termination. Boettner’s advice: “Hire slowly, fire quickly” — that, fire a poor employee quickly by means of a fair process.
- Grievance Procedures. “The first responsibility of any party in a grievance is to go directly to the person they have a grievance with and speak with them” (61).
This chapter is well-planned, pastoral, and in accord with the teachings of the U.S. bishops.