University of Minnesota  Procedure

Comprehensively Reviewing Existing Administrative Policies


The purpose of a comprehensive review is to take an in depth look at existing administrative policies and associated documents such as procedures, FAQs, and appendices to: 1) determine whether a policy is still needed or if it should be combined with another administrative policy; 2) determine whether the purpose and goal of the policy is still being met; 3) determine whether changes are required to improve the effectiveness or clarity of the policy and procedures; and 4) to ensure that appropriate education, monitoring and ongoing review of the policy is occurring.

Note: Where an action step is specified for a policy owner (“owner”), the task may also be performed by the owner’s designate, such as the primary contact for the policy. The owner remains responsible for the content and meeting the required steps and deadline.


This review is a partnership with the policy owner, in consultation with groups such as the Policy Advisory Committee (PAC). Recommendations and subsequent outcomes will be shared with the President’s Policy Committee (PPC) if the proposed changes are significant.


  1. Policies due for comprehensive review are identified either by the owner or by the director of the University Policy Program (UPP).
  2. The director will send an email to the owner six months in advance of the date for completion of the review.
  3. The UPP director will also notify the Diversity Community of Practice – Equity Lens Policy Review Committee (ELPRC) who will apply an equity lens to the current version of the policy 
  4. The owner creates a Word document of the current policy.
  5. The owner examines their policies and procedures, considering comments captured through the comment boxes on the policy and related documents (available under the maintenance tab) as well as feedback obtained through their other mechanisms, such as meetings, helpline, comments from the ELPRC examination of the current version of the administrative policy.
    1. The owner may also choose to complete form UM1835 which contains a set of questions associated with comprehensive reviews. This form need not be submitted but rather used as a guide for the owner.
  6. The owner revises the policy and associated documents as needed, using track changes.
  7. The owner consults the revised draft with key constituents:
    • internal management and other specific individuals/units that have some piece of the process, hold a key role, or who may be impacted by the changes;
    • the ELPRC Meeting Dates are located in the PPC/PAC information page (see appendix Consultation Guidelines for Administrative Policies);
    • appropriate University Senate committees, if any, as specified on the Senate Matrix; and
      • Contact the University Senate Office a minimum of 30 days in advance of the committee meeting on which this policy would be reviewed.
      • Provide a redline version of the policy, as well as a summary of changes, to the University Senate Office at least 1 week before the committee meeting.
    • Representatives or committees that are comprised of the direct audience for the policy (e.g., for human resource policies, it might be the Human Resources leads).
  8. The owner considers all the feedback from the consultation and comments submitted since the last version and incorporates changes as needed. Note that not all suggestions need to be accepted unless the suggestion addresses incorrect or incomplete information.
  9. Once the revised policy draft is ready for submission, the owner completes the Administrative Policy review form (UM 1648) and informs the University Policy Program (UPP) director that the policy is ready to present to the Policy Advisory Committee (PAC).
    • If the owner wishes to request an extended comprehensive review period (from 4 years to as long as 6 years), they complete the Comprehensive Review Extension Request form (UM XXX) and submits it along with their other materials.
    • Owners who are granted an extension will attest to the accuracy of their policy and related documents every two years upon notification from the University Policy Program.
  10. The owner sends the revised documents and form(s)  to the UPP director.
  11. The UPP director performs a preliminary review of the form(s) and policy, and provides suggestions. The owner determines whether to incorporate any of the suggestions.
  12. The director then forwards the revised policy, form(s), and associated documents to the PAC members for review approximately one week in advance of the meeting.
  13. At the PAC meeting, the owner presents the revised policy and associated documents, and captures feedback from the PAC members.
  14. The owner makes changes to the policy draft, if any, and forwards the final to the UPP director.
  15. If the changes to the policy are minor, the UPP updates the policy on the web and communicates the key changes.
  16. If the changes are significant or if the owner has requested an extension to the next comprehensive review period, the director places the policy or request on the agenda of the President’s Policy Committee at their next scheduled meeting.

PPC Policy Review and Approval

  1. The owner presents the documents to PPC and responds to questions.
  2. The PPC determines whether to approve the proposed policy changes.
  3. If yes, the policy, after incorporating updates based on the discussion with the PPC, is posted on the policy website for 30 days. The UPP director places an announcement in the Brief. Owners should communicate the policy changes to their end users.
    1. Policies that are approved for retirement will be removed by UPP the policy website.
  4. The owner, the UPP director, and the PPC chair review comments received from this public comment period. The owner determines what modifications to the policy draft will be made.
  5. The PPC chair either approves the proposed modifications to the policy for publication on behalf of the PPC, or, if there the modifications are significant, brings the final policy back to the PPC for approval to publish.
  6. The PPC also reviews any comprehensive review extension requests and determines whether to grant the request. If yes, the new date is updated by the UPP in the policy library.


  1. The owner sends the final policy revision to the UPP for updating to the production policy web site.
  2. If the policy changes include a requirement for formal training, the owner works with the appropriate training specialists to ensure that it is deployed (e.g., changes or new financial policies should also go through Training Services so that training materials and/or associated courses reflect the most current information.)
  3. The owner uses a variety of communication vehicles to disseminate the policy information to the appropriate audiences.
  4. The UPP publishes a quarterly policy newsletter, and assists the owner with any additional communication, at the request of the owner.