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PPM Section 7 - Termination of Employment

Termination of employment may take place for a variety of reasons. When employment termination becomes necessary, whether employee or employer initiated, proper procedures must be followed to assure fair treatment to all parties. Reasonable advance notice of an employee's resignation is expected if the employee wishes to terminate with a favorable reference.

Supervisors are expected to contact Human Resources prior to discharging any employee to ensure such action is appropriate, consistent with standard policies, and that due process requirements have been met.

Should an employee leave University employment for any reason, there is no guarantee of future University employment.

Resignation

The employment relationship is most typically severed by employee resignation. Employees are expected to notify their immediate supervisor in writing of their intention to resign their position.

Expected notice:

  1. Hourly paid staff are expected to provide two (2) weeks notice when resigning.
  2. Exempt (salaried) staff are expected to provide four (4) weeks notice when resigning.
  3. All staff are asked to provide their supervisor more than the minimum amount of notice whenever possible to facilitate the replacement process.

Procedure

  1. The staff member submits a written resignation to the immediate supervisor. Note: Management reserves the right to accept an employee's resignation as being effective the date it is submitted.
  2. The immediate supervisor informs the employee that he/she must contact Human Resources to schedule an exit interview.
  3. The supervisor completes a transaction form separating the employee, following the instructions provided on the back of form.

    Management reserves the right to schedule the employee's use of annual leave before the effective date of the resignation to meet the department's budget and staffing needs. Any remaining annual leave balance is subject to the annual leave-separation and retirement provisions in the employee handbook.
  4. The supervisor collects University property (including building keys and access cards, Bronco identification card, electronic equipment, parking permit, etc.) from the employee on or before their last day of work.

Discharge

It may become necessary for the employer to sever the employment relationship through the discharge of an employee. The discharge of a staff member is an action to be taken with extreme care to ensure the protection of all parties concerned. Supervisors are expected to contact Human Resources prior to discharging any employee to ensure such action is appropriate, consistent with standard policies, and that due process requirements have been met.

  1. Reasons for discharge of a staff member must be documented with supporting data justifying the discharge action.
  2. During probation, management may release the employee with or without cause at the sole discretion of management. Termination under these conditions may be without notice. Supervisors are expected to contact Human Resources prior to discharging any probationary employee.

Procedure

After consulting with Human Resources regarding the discharge, and upon compilation of necessary documentation for the action, discharge procedures are as follows:

  1. The supervisor advises the employee of the reason(s) for, and the date of, the discharge.
  2. The supervisor completes a transaction form indicating separation, following the instructions provided on the back of form.
  3. Management reserves the right to schedule the employee's use of annual leave before the effective date of the discharge to meet the department's budget and staffing needs. Any remaining annual leave balance is subject to the annual leave-separation and retirement provisions in the employee handbook.
  4. The immediate supervisor informs the employee that he/she must contact Human Resources to schedule an exit interview.
  5. The supervisor collects University property (including building keys and access cards, Bronco identification card, electronic equipment, parking permit, etc.) from the employee on their last day of work.

End of appointment - terminal appointments

Employees hired on regular terminal appointments are considered regular, benefits-eligible employees whose positions have a known ending date. This normally coincides with externally funded projects and the end of the contract/funding for that project. If the project or contract is not renewed, the employment relationship ends and the supervisor completes a Transaction form indicating separation due to "end of appointment." If possible, accumulated annual leave should be used before the final date of employment. Any remaining annual leave balance is subject to the annual leave-separation and retirement provisions in the employee handbook.

Job opportunity program

If an employee in a regular terminal position is unable to find a new position through the job opportunity program before the appointment ends, the employee may request, in writing, permission to continue to apply through the job opportunity program as an internal candidate. The request must be submitted to Human Resources no later than the last day of employment. Access to the job opportunity program will be granted for 90 days. If the employee has not found a new position at the end of the 90-day extension, he/she must apply as an external candidate.

Rehire provisions

  1. Should an employee leave University employment for any reason, there is no guarantee of future University employment.
  2. If an employee is rehired by the University
    1. Prior service credit will be granted to individuals entering benefits-eligible positions, if they have prior service in a University benefits-eligible position.
    2. Annual leave - rehire provisions are located in employee handbook.
  3. For retirement eligibility details, see retiring from WMU in the employee handbook.

Unemployment compensation

Benefits and claims

The University is a "covered employer" under the Unemployment Compensation Act. This means that the University is required to pay unemployment compensation to former employees who are determined by the Michigan Unemployment Agency to be eligible for benefits. The University does not wish to deny benefits to individuals who are out of work through no fault of their own. However, the University does wish to minimize costs, whenever legally appropriate, by submitting accurate and complete information to the agency.

Procedure

  1. Claim forms or other unemployment inquiries received by an employing department should be forwarded immediately to Human Resources for processing.
  2. The University is required by law to respond to an Unemployment Agency claim office within ten (10) calendar days from the date the claim was mailed from the agency. Human Resources is responsible for answering all Unemployment Agency inquiries, in order to assure the continuity and correctness of all University claims.

Written reasonable assurance

Any employee who is not scheduled to work between academic years or terms is not eligible for unemployment benefits. The Unemployment Agency requires that these persons be provided with "written reasonable assurance" that they will be returning to their same position the following semester or term.

Procedure

  1. The employing department issues a letter of "reasonable assurance of reemployment," a sample of which can be found in the business managers and hiring agents section at Forms.
  2. The written reasonable assurance should include: (1) the employee's last day of work, (2) the expected date of return to work, (3) reasonable assurance of the same position, conditional upon sufficient enrollments in the case of temporary or non-tenure track faculty, and (4) dated signatures of both employee and supervisor.