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University of Louisville
Employee Suggestion Program
Administrative Manual

IV. Eligibility


1. Any suggestion of benefit to the University that is useful, practical and constructive is eligible for review by the Employee Suggestion Program (ESP). However, there are some suggestions that are not eligible for consideration and some cases in which a suggestion is not eligible for an award. The criteria to be used in making eligibility determinations are outlined in the following sections.

2. ER conducts a suggestion eligibility screening upon receipt of the suggestion. ER is the final authority regarding the person making the suggestion and suggestion eligibility.


1. A valid suggestion must concisely identify a problem or an area in which productivity or efficiency can be improved. It must propose a viable solution and sufficient documentation of anticipated benefits. It must also be written legibly and submitted on an ESP Suggestion Form.

A good suggestion will do one or more of the following:

Improve methods, accounting practices, housekeeping, quality of products, office procedures, protection of property, or employee morale

Reduce cost of materials or services, safety hazards, waste or maintenance

Eliminate spoilage, duplication, breakage, wasted effort, or bottlenecks

Increase service delivery, production of materials, or the amount of work produced generally

Increase revenue

Combine operations, methods, procedures, or official forms

Conserve time, material, equipment or natural resources

Invent equipment, methods of operations, or products

2. All valid suggestions will be considered even if the person making the suggestion is later determined to be ineligible for an award.

3. The active life of a valid suggestion shall be one (1) year from receipt by the ER office, or until final disposition of the suggestion if longer than one year. This is intended to protect the original person making the suggestion's interest in the suggestion. Thus, the already submitted suggestion takes precedence over any subsequent duplicate suggestions (see IV.D.4).

4. To be eligible for an award, a suggestion must result in activity on the part of management that is directly related to the suggestion.

5. Some suggestions which cannot be considered include suggestions which:

a. Concern administrative planning and research when submitted by employees whose normal duties include making suggestions or who are expected, as part of their jobs, to have ideas for improvement.

b. Relate to a particular problem given to an employee to solve within the scope of his/her duties and responsibilities

c. Constitute a personal grievance or complaint

d. Request a change in salary or position

e. Do not include a solution in salary or position

f. Are the result of assigned or contracted audits, studies, surveys, reviews or research

g. Concern proposals that management can document as already under consideration

h. Duplicate another suggestion for which an award previously has been granted


1. All regular employees of the University of Louisville are eligible to submit ideas to ESP. Administrators are excluded.

2. A supervisory employee may receive an award for a suggestion only if the suggestion requires approval of a higher level of authority to implement, or if the suggestion applies to units beyond his or her area of responsibility.

3. An employee whose primary duties are research, planning, investigation, management analysis, or evaluation may receive an award for a suggestion only if the suggestion is clearly unrelated to the employee's primary duties or responsibilities.


1. ER is responsible for final determination of the eligibility of employees and suggestions. The evaluating department will provide ER with a recommendation in each instance.

2. Employees are not eligible to participate in the evaluation of, or decision to, adopt their own suggestion.

3. If duplicate suggestions are received on the same day, the persons making the suggestion will share any award. If duplicate suggestions are received on different days, only the one received first by ER is eligible for review.

4. In the event that a suggestion is approved for implementation before discovering that it is substantially similar to another suggestion classified as active, ER will conduct a review which will:

a. Determine whether the second suggestion is in fact a duplicate

b. Determine which suggestion was most responsible for causing management to make the suggested improvement

c. Recommend the suggestion responsible for improvements for an award

d. Recommend a shared award where evidence does not clearly indicate which suggestion prompted improvements



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