Dated: May 15, 1998
Category: Classification and Compensation
Contact: Director of Classification and Compensation - ext. 7-0654
a. This information memorandum provides guidance for members of the faculty and staff who need to plan for the hiring of individuals in support of programs/projects funded by grants and contracts. This guidance does not apply to the employment of "student workers" nor does it apply to the purchase of faculty release time.
b. Advance planning and coordination with the Human Resources Department is recommended in order to eliminate or reduce delays in the employment process.
c. Associate Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, Director of Academic Grants and Contracts, Contracts and Grants Accountant (Financial Services Department), and the Contracts and Grants Administrator in the Engineering Research and Industrial Development Office have provided input to this Personnel Information Memorandum.
2. Questionnaire to Assist in Categorizing Employment Needs
To assist program/project directors in gathering the information and making the determinations necessary to begin the process of hiring employees, a questionnaire has been developed for reference.
3. Categorizing Employment Needs
a. Proper employment planning requires an understanding of the basic employment categories. Employment may be categorized as being full-time or part-time, temporary or permanent, 'subject to' or 'exempt from' the wage and hour provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act, 'subject to' or 'exempt from' the State Human Resources Act, special faculty or staff (if exempt from the State Human Resources Act).
b. To categorize an employment need, a determination must first be made as to how long someone will be needed to work, followed by a determination of the required schedule, The duration of employment and work schedule will determine whether the individual to be employed can be hired as a temporary employee or if it will be necessary to formally "establish" a position in order to hire the individual as a non-temporary ("Permanent") employee for a specified period of time.
c. The work schedule also determines whether the individual to be employed will be hired to work a regular schedule or an irregular/intermittent schedule, as well as distinguishes full-time employment from part-time employment.
4. Temporary Employment
a. Employment is categorized as temporary, if employment needs can be met by someone working no longer than 12 months, or by working a regular schedule of 19 or less hours per week or an irregular/intermittent work schedule limited to 988 hours or less during any calendar year regardless of the duration of employment. (NOTE: As an exception to this general rule, the employment of someone working less than 12 months but at least 6 months may be categorized as non-temporary ("permanent") provided the appointment is to an established position. In such cases, the individual employed would be entitled to pro-rated leave benefits.)
b. Most temporary employment is hourly paid; however, monthly salaries may be paid if the work is determined to be exempt from the wage and hour provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Provisions are also available for payment of lump sums.
c. Funding from grants and contracts to pay for temporary employees should be identified as Non-Student Temporary Employee wage funds (Object Code 1410). Additional information regarding the hiring of temporary staff employees is contained in Personnel Information Memorandum Number 8, Subject: EMPLOYMENT - Temporary Staff Employees.
5. Employment Requiring an Established Position ("Permanent" Employment)
a. Employment of 20 or more hours per week for periods longer than 12 months is categorized by the University as non-temporary ("permanent") and therefore requires that a position be formally established (approved by the State Human Resources Office) in order for such employment to take place.
b. Positions are established as being 'subject to' (SHRA) or 'exempt from' (EHRA) the provisions of the State Human Resources Act. All positions (except teaching faculty positions, faculty librarian positions, non-teaching faculty positions requiring a tenured incumbent and senior administrator positions) are considered subject to (SHRA) the State Human Resources Act unless an exemption is approved by the Office of State Human Resources (OSHR). Currently, such approvals require the concurrence of UNC General Administration.
c. In order for a research position to meet the criteria for exemption from (EHRA) the provisions of the State Human Resources Act, the duties must be characterized by substantial independence of creative or research efforts, discretion, and interpretation of research results as distinguished from technical support positions. Additionally, post baccalaureate education or a comparable record of independent research productivity must be a requirement of the position.
d. The Director of Classification, Compensation, and HRIS can provide valuable assistance in making a preliminary determination as to whether the duties and responsibilities of a position meet the criteria for exemption from the State Human Resources Act.
6. Establishing a New Permanent Position
a. Once the proposed employment category is determined, a Budget Request for New EHRA (Non-Teaching) and SHRA Positions is to be prepared.
1. The budget request for an EHRA Special Faculty position must include a written justification which clearly establishes:
i. The position is being established for the purpose of conducting organized research. (Include a brief description of the research).
ii. The research has a fundamental education purpose.
iii. The incumbent will be appointed to the research faculty of the University and will be subject to the institutional tenure policies, regulations, and procedures.
2. The budget request for EPA Staff positions must include a written justification which clearly establishes:
i. The position is being established for the purpose of performing duties integral to the active training of participants in the University's institutional program in those research activities that are associated with the regular instructional program of the University, particularly with respect to upper level undergraduate students.
ii. The position is characterized by substantial independence of creative or research efforts and discretion and interpretation of research results as distinguished from technical support positions.
iii. A substantial portion of the total job commitment will be devoted to the activities described above.
iv. The incumbent must possess a post baccalaureate degree or comparable record of independent research productivity.
3. The budget request for an SHRA Staff position requires no special information in the justification provided.
b. Two (2) copies of the budget request are submitted to Classification, Compensation, and HRIS, (within Human Resources), with the appropriate documentation to establish the position by a memorandum of transmittal addressed through the appropriate Vice Chancellor, whose written concurrence is required, (NOTE: Detailed information regarding documentation and the process followed in establishing new positions is contained in Personnel Information Memorandum Number 14, Subject: POSITION MANAGEMENT – Establishing or Reallocating SHRA Positions.) The actual funding category (Object Code) may change depending on the action taken by the Office of State Personnel with regard to the request to establish a new position.
c. Upon request, the Director of Classification, Compensation, and HRIS will submit a Position Action request (PD-118) to establish a new position in advance of funding approval provided there is a clear indication that funding is forthcoming, Position Action requests are submitted to the Office of State Human Resources and currently require approximately 30-days for a response. Requests to establish positions as exempt from the State Human Resources Act (EHRA) require the concurrence of UNC General Administration.
7. Appointments to Established ('Permanent") Positions
a. Appointments to classified (SHRA) positions will be made "time-limited" in order to avoid priority reemployment and severance obligations at the time the research project ends or funding is exhausted.
b. Individuals employed to fill positions funded by grants or contracts that have been approved (established) as exempt from (EHRA) the State Human Resources Act are appointed for specified periods of time as "Special Faculty" or as "EHRA Staff" employees, See UNC Charlotte Policy Statement #101.16, Research Appointments.
i. Those appointed as "Special Faculty" are subject to the Tenure Policies Regulations, and Procedures.
ii. Those appointed as "EHRA Staff" are subject to UNC Charlotte Policy Statement #102.7, Personnel Policies for Designated Employment Exempt from the State Human Resources Act.
a. Temporary employees have no entitlement to leave, medical or retirement benefits.
b. The eligibility for benefits of employees working in permanent positions (other than those temporarily filling a vacancy) is based on whether they are full-time or part time and the specified duration of their appointment, Information regarding eligibility for benefits may be found in Personnel Information Memorandum Number 30, Subject: BENEFITS ADMINISTRATION - Eligibility for Leave, Medical, and Retirement Benefits. (Cautionary Note: Program/Project Directors are cautioned regarding the possible budgetary consequences of both severance obligations and payments for unused annual/vacation leave. Appointments of classified (SHRA) employees must be time-limited to avoid severance pay obligations. Employees who earn annual/vacation leave are entitled to payment for any unused leave.