A stable job and better working conditions for its employees was the goal set by the Universidad Industrial de Santander in 2013, to promote a sense of belonging among workers. Almost 10 years later, the objective has been met and this is recognized by the Ministerio de Trabajo.
“The process that has been advanced at the University is one of formalization. It has multiple benefits, but above all the ultimate goal is to achieve decent work, that its workers are in better conditions, have better job stability. It allowed the UIS to formalize the workers that were linked through outsourcing by a contracting different from labor and today they enjoy benefits,” said Francisco Antonio Plata Jaimes, territorial director of the Ministry of Labor in Santander.
Until 2013 there was a process of outsourcing in hiring at the University so that each person worked at the UIS but legally did not appear as an employee of the institution. Thus, since the beginning of 2014, 720 employees were formalized and officially became UIS workers.
“In the second half of 2013, the university approves by agreement of the Consejo Superior the modality of temporary jobs for the University, also by resolution of the Rectory regulates the procedure to link temporary officials. Thus, in January 2014, the UIS began the process of direct hiring of its officials, through appointments by resolution of the Rector’s Office and possession proceedings as public employees, so at that time we achieved the formalization of 720 officials,” recalled Silvia Juliana Rueda Sarmiento, head (e) of the Division of Human Talent Management.
Once the formalization was completed, the UIS and the MinTrabajo signed a labor formalization agreement, in which the University undertook to maintain the working conditions of the formalized personnel, expand the number of administrative positions and fill positions through merit-based competitions. It would also receive two annual visits for five consecutive years by Ministry officials, who monitored compliance with the agreement.
“As evidence of compliance, the UIS delivered the results of the merit-based competitions, the supports of how the working conditions of civil servants were maintained, an agreement was issued to the Consejo Superior where the staff of career positions was expanded and at this moment we continue with the programming of merit-based competitions that continue to take place at the University,” Rueda Sarmiento added.
An example of this process is Juan Manuel Esparza Barajas. He arrived at the UIS in 2006, was outsourced, benefited from the formalization, and at the end of 2021 won the merit-based competition to become a permanent employee.
“The entrance for us was very tortuous. When I entered I signed a contract every three months, then I worked as an OPS for two years. From one moment to the next, the figure of temporary staff appeared and this gave me the opportunity to continue advancing as a person who builds the University because that is what we are really here for,” said Esparza Barajas, who is currently a member of the Communications Department team.
A similar situation occurred with Paola Rosillo Guarín. Her affection for the University began when she started studying physiotherapy. Years later she started working at the institution and, like Juan Manuel, she benefited from the formalization. Today he combines his passion for sports by representing the University in various tournaments, with his taste for work and above all his love for the UIS.
“I entered in 2006 with an outsourcing contract, I spent several years like that. I worked at UIS, I exercised my functions here, but I was not a UIS official. In 2014 this opportunity to link me under the modality of the temporary plant appeared, it was a success and an immense advance in the contractual issue because if there is something important for one as a worker, it is to feel part of something to have an identity, to feel valued and motivated. This strengthened my sense of belonging to the university,” said Rosillo Guarín, physiotherapist at Bienestar Estudiantil.
Professional development continues to advance at the UIS with administrative merit-based competitions. In this way, each employee feels part of the institution and day by day contributes to the growth of the University from their area.