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Support Staff Policy & Procedure for Filling Vacant Regular Positions

Last updated 07/02/2015


Applies to: University support positions
  1. The recruitment of applicants and the filling of vacant positions is the responsibility of MSU Human Resources. 
  2. Michigan State University is committed to the principles of equal opportunity, non-discrimination, and cultural diversity. The University, in its employment and personnel policies and practices, does not discriminate against any individual on the basis of age, color, gender, gender identity, disability status, height, marital status, national origin, political persuasion, race, religion, sexual orientation, veteran status, or weight.
  3. The University is committed to the concept of promotion from within the institution.
  4. The University endorses the principle of career development of its employees and will, in good faith, encourage career concepts of employment.


  1. All forms of recruitment, including personal contacts and media advertising, should be communicated to MSU Human Resources. 
  2. MSU Human Resources Solutions Center administers certain tests under controlled conditions which provide equal opportunities for all applicants and employees. Individuals and departments may not administer any form of employee or applicant tests without prior approval by MSU Human Resources.
  3. Offers of regular employment, including salary commitments, may be made only with the approval of MSU Human Resources.
  4. Collective Bargaining Agreements specify variations in procedures for filling vacancies which may supersede the following and should be reviewed prior to filling a vacancy.

Staffing Request:

  1. A department wishing to fill a vacancy should submit a completed Staffing Request Form through EBS, which will be routed to MSU HR. 
  2. The request is to contain a concise description of job responsibilities, experience, education and credentials necessary to do the job (consistent with the classification specification).

Pre-selections (clerical/technical only):

  1. Refer to CTU Contract for details.
  2. Complete a Staffing Request Form through EBS and include the pre-selection information in the Comments section of the form.
  3. Candidates must meet minimum requirements of positions.
  4. Selected candidates serve a trial period of 256 working hours.

MSU HR: Reviews Staffing Request form for employee's pre-selection eligibility and appropriate starting date, then approves or disapproves the action. If approved, the position vacancy will not be posted and the CTU will be notified three working days prior to implementation. The department will be informed of pre-selection approval.

Bypass procedures:
MSU Human Resources: The procedures for filling positions may be bypassed for an applicant, employee or former employee for such reasons as, but not limited to:

  • returning from leave of absence,
  • receiving Workers' Compensation,
  • trial period termination,
  • imminent layoff,
  • layoff, or
  • hours reduction
  1. The position to be used for bypass is selected by MSU HR from requests submitted for which the individual qualifies.
  2. When a match-up is made of credentials to job requirements, the department is notified that an individual is to be interviewed and accepted, or submit written reasons for non-selection (including why the individual could not learn to do the job during the appropriate trial, training, requalification or evaluation period). Under normal circumstances, the department is to contact the bypass candidate within three business days of the time the department receives notice of the bypass situation.
  3. Once the department has met with the bypass candidate, a decision of how to proceed is given. The reasons for non-selection are reviewed by MSU Human Resource to determine the acceptability of the reasons given.
  4. Other applicants will be held from consideration until the bypass situation is resolved.
  5. If a department cancels a vacancy after receiving notice that a candidate has been referred as a bypass to the position, the department may not post the same position, similar position, or fill the vacancy with a temporary employee for six months from the date the position was posted.

The six-month hold refers to avoidance of bypass actions for return from leave and layoff placements.

Job Postings:
MSU HR: Job postings are updated weekly. The openings are posted on MAP -- MSU Applicant Page ( for a minimum of five (5) business days.

Job posting do not include:

  • temporary positions expected to last less than nine months,
  • on-call positions of less than 20 hours per week.

(See Policy and Procedure for filling vacant positions - temporary, on-call minors).

Department: Some units post a hard copy of the job postings in a conspicuous place.

Advertising vacancies (media):

  • Departments determine which media they want to use to advertise their vacancy. Departments place the advertisement directly and are billed directly by the company.
  • The advertisement needs to include a description of the position which closely parallels the job posting, the six-digit posting number, and the application procedure to be followed. This should always include a closing date to let applicants know the latest date they may submit their applications.
  • The advertisement must also include the statement, "Michigan State University is an affirmative action, equal opportunity employer and is committed to achieving excellence through cultural diversity.  The university actively encourages applications and/or nominations of women, persons of color, veterans and persons with disabilities.  Job applicants are considered for employment opportunities and employees are treated without regard to their race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, or veteran status".
  • Departments may contact MSU Human Resources for support with advertising needs.

Applying for vacancies:
Employee: May apply for posted vacancies during an initial five-working-day period by completing an application using MAP -- MSU Applicant Page ( Employees can search for various types of positions, apply online, and check the status of positions using MAP.

Non-employee: May apply for positions using MAP -- MSU Applicant Page ( when applications are being accepted from the public.

Referral of candidates/reference checks:
MSU Human Resources:

  1. Screens credentials of applicants for vacant positions for minimum qualifications.
  2. Using COMPASS, prepares interview list including names and credentials of interested employees (and other applicants, if permitted), and releases it to hiring department.
  3. Some Units may choose to screen applicants for minimum requirements.


  1. Authorized departmental administrators may examine the official personnel folder of employees who have applied for a vacancy in that department. They may also contact the employee's former department(s) for references.
  2. Reference checking of off-campus employers is permissible and encouraged. Inquiries to off-campus employers should be handled in a confidential manner and all questions to employers are subject to the rules and guidelines relative to equal employment opportunity and fair employment practices (see Employment Guide).
  3. It is the responsibility of the hiring department to ensure that employees possess required licenses, registrations and certificates (see Policy and Procedure for licenses, registrations and certifications).

Department: The interviewing department arranges interview times for candidates listed on the interview list. Procedures vary by bargaining group. Structured interviews (see Behavioral-Based Interview Questions), i.e., consistent interviews, are conducted in accordance with Equal Employment Opportunity guidelines and the Americans with Disabilities Act. Structured interview documents are to be retained by the department for a minimum of three years. In the event of an official challenge to the process, these documents are to be retained until the matter is closed.

Employee/department: Employee candidates are to be granted reasonable time away from the job to interview for University vacancies.

Selection of candidate:
Department: Interviews and completes the hiring recommendation in COMPASS which is reviewed by MSU HR and/or the Office of Inclusion and Intercultural Initiatives (OIII) for approval.

MSU HR: Final selection of the candidate, including salary and starting date, requires approval of MSU HR. A criminal background check will be run on all employees.

No promises of future raises, except those contractually agreed to, should be given to a prospective employee.

Notification of selected candidates:
After receiving approval to hire from MSU HR, the department notifies the selected candidate. When the selected candidate accepts the offer of employment, the department informs him/her of:

  • who to contact for new employee orientation,
  • the starting date, and
  • the approved starting wage.

If the selected candidate is a current employee, he/she may be required to satisfactorily complete another health assessment prior to changing jobs (see Policy and Procedure for health assessment).

New University employees are oriented and their appropriate paperwork is processed by MSU Human Resources Solutions Center prior to beginning work.

MSU Human Resources Solutions Center:

  • Verifies Social Security number, name, citizenship status and/or eligibility to work in the United States as required by the Immigration Reform and Control Act, (I9)
  • Prepares identification card, tax card(s), union check-off card, health assessment form (if appropriate), parking permit, union contracts, Employee Handbook, Michigan Right to Know document, etc.
  • Refers employee to Olin Health Center for health assessment if necessary. (NOTE: New employees may be required to complete a physical capacity test before they are permitted to work [see Policy and Procedure for health assessment].)
  • Informs newly-hired employees for regular half-time or more positions of available benefit programs and enrollment options and requirements.

Must submit identification to MSU Human Resources Solutions Center at the time of orientation which complies with requirements under the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986.
If requesting a parking permit, vehicle registration is required.

MSU Human Resources:
Establishes official personnel folder.
Notifies Payroll Office of employment, pay rate, etc.

Notice requirements:

  • APA, APSA, FOP and Nurses are to give a minimum of one-month's notice prior to changing departments. All other employees are to give a minimum two-weeks' notice. Exceptions may be worked out by mutual agreement of the parties involved. Departments may detain an employee only for the length of time required for notice (VARIES: Departments may detain a 1585 employee for no more than three weeks).
  • Employees who have received notice of layoff - reduction in force or reduction in hours may be relocated without the normal notice requirements.

Refer questions to: MSU Human Resources Solutions Center (telephone 517-353-4434, e-mail).

Last updated:

7/02/2015:  Added expanded EEO statement to Advertising section at request of Office of Inclusion.

10/23/13: Updated Item 2 under Policy section to be consistent with the Anti-Discrimination Policy

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