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A&M to begin outsourcing non-academic services

Published: Thursday, February 23, 2012

Updated: Wednesday, July 25, 2012 22:07

Texas A&M staff may soon have new employers, after University officials announced Thursday that the decision process has begun to outsource facility services.

Emails circulated Thursday, informing University staff employees to attend a meeting at 11 a.m. Friday in Rudder Auditorium. At the meeting staff employees will be updated on plans for the future of facilities services' employer and employees.

Steven Moore, vice chancellor of marketing and communications for the Texas A&M System, said the decision to outsource facility services has not officially been made. But he said the decision to go through the process has been made.

Texas A&M officials will issue an appease to outside companies to offer the opportunity to bid on the employment of facilities services at the University.

"The decision has been … to determine whether or not [outsourcing] is going to be an effective way to deliver the services, versus what we do now," Moore said.

Bids have not yet been issued, but Moore said they are going to be rolled out in the next week.

When asked to comment on the status of the decision to outsource Texas A&M University's facilities services, University vice president for communication and marketing Jason Cook deferred to the vice chancellor of marketing and communications for the System.

Moore said the motivation behind outsourcing facility services is to preserve the core functions Texas A&M delivers: teaching, faculty and research.

"This is what the students obviously pay for to come here," Moore said. "And [we're] examining every means we can outside [academics] to save money, reduce cost and become more effective and efficient."

It is unclear at this point whether changes to facility services, which includes dining services, landscape maintenance, building maintenance and custodial services, will affect student-worker positions.

Moore said after recommendations are made from an appointed committee, the board of regents will conduct a final analysis before a decision is made.

Most companies that would bid on the control of facilities services at Texas A&M do not provide outside employees, Moore said.

"The normal course or action is to hire your employees to do that," Moore said. "Obviously they know the job, they know what to do, they know where to go."

The company selected would conduct an evaluation of the departments within facility services and make changes according to the way and the staff they decide to run the services.

"When universities do this, or when anyone does this, you are basically shifting the risk from the university to the outside employer," Moore said.

Student Regent Fernando Trevino declined to comment on decisions to outsource facility services.

 

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