The University of Memphis

Separation from Employment



POLICIES

Issued: December 10, 2015
Responsible Official: Vice President for Business & Finance
Responsible Office: Human Resources

Policy Statement


Policy Statement

Employees of the University and/or their respective department heads are required to complete certain administrative actions when employees separate from the University.

Individuals who leave employment with the University are expected to return University property, and satisfy outstanding financial or other obligations before the last work day.



Purpose


 

To establish a reliable and uniform method of processing and reporting employee separations from the University; to insure objective and fair treatment of employees leaving the University, while preserving institutional authority and discretion; and to insure that appropriate clearance actions are completed prior to an employee's last work day.



Contents

Definitions
Procedures
FAQs
Links

Definitions


Voluntary Separation

A voluntary separation is one that results when an employee leaves a job on his or her own initiative, usually through resignation or retirement. Some examples include but are not limited to return to school, better job/pay, and personal reasons. This also includes job abandonment, when an employee does not report to work or notify his or her supervisor/manager for three consecutive days.


Involuntary Separation

An involuntary separation is one initiated by the University and may result from a variety of reasons, including but not limited to job elimination, discharge for unsatisfactory behavior and/or work performance. 



Procedures


Voluntary Separations for Staff, Temporary Employees and Retirement

An Employee Separation and Clearance Form must be initiated to begin the separation process. The online separation notice can be found at www.memphis.edu/sep-clear. The submission of this online form will result in the notification via e-mail of affected University departments. All approvals are obtained electronically during the routing of the form. The employee, the supervisor/manager, and the submitter of the form will also receive copies of this notification. 

Supervisors/managers should review and approve final time sheets and/or leave reports, where appropriate, prior to the last day of employment or before the payroll deadline date.

If an employee retires and elects terminal leave, the employee/supervisor will report time/leave through the last day worked and submit and approve the record. HR Records Management will process the terminal leave disbursements and there will be no future time/leave forms required by the department.

Temporary employees do not receive leave benefits. Therefore, the leave section of the form is not applicable.  


Involuntary Separations - General Information for all Staff Employees

Managers and supervisors must receive approval from the AVP/Chief Human Resources Officer prior to notifying an employee of termination.

To recommend a termination, the Department Head or appropriate administrator will consult with Human Resources - Office of Employee Relations and Engagement regarding the request for termination. A memo of justification addressed to the AVP/Chief Human Resources Officer should be submitted and routed through the appropriate Vice President/Provost, if required. The Office of Employee Relations and Engagement will initiate the online Employee Separation and Clearance Form. The online separation notice can be found at www.memphis.edu/sep-clear. The submission of this online form will result in the notification via e-mail of affected University departments. All approvals are obtained electronically during the routing of the form. The AVP/Chief Human Resources Officer is the final approver for staff separations. Time sheets and/or leave reports should be completed prior to the last day of work or no later than the corresponding payroll deadline date for either biweekly or monthly paid employees.

Human Resources - Office of Employee Relations and Engagement, in conjunction with the department representative,  will conduct an exit interview with the employee. The employee will be given all information as it relates to separation from the University, i.e., benefits, unemployment and appeal rights, if applicable.


Involuntary Separations - Categories for Regular Staff Employees

Termination Without Cause

Probationary Employees - Staff employees serve in a probationary status for the first six months following their hire date, and will serve subsequent probationary periods for six months following the date of any promotion or transfer to a different position.  Employees may be terminated at any time for any reason during their probationary period. Employees terminated within their probationary period do not have appeal rights under the Grievance Process and Conflict Resolution Policy.

Job Eliminations – Employees may be subject to termination if their job is eliminated due to reasons such as reorganization or financial exigency. In these cases, advance notice of the job elimination will be given to the affected employee so he/she can seek other employment.  Job elimination is not covered under the Grievance Process and Conflict Resolution Policy. 

Involuntary Separation under the Terms of the Employment Agreement – Exempt employees may be given notice of involuntary separation under the terms of their employment agreement, i.e., the contract clause that states the agreement may be terminated upon 30 days’ notice. It is not necessary to document the reasons for invoking this clause in the employment agreement, but such actions must be reviewed by the Department of Human Resources in conjunction with the Office of Legal Counsel.

Note: Non-exempt, hourly-paid employees may not be released under these terms.

Termination For Cause:

Misconduct - For situations involving deficiencies in work performance, attendance, punctuality, behavior or other such work related concerns, employees who have completed their probationary period may be terminated only after proper warning and placement in a performance improvement plan.

The Performance Improvement Process  http://umwa.memphis.edu/umpolicies/UM1557.htm is applicable to non-exempt, bi-weekly paid employees.

Gross Misconduct – Employees may be terminated without notice or a performance plan for committing acts of gross misconduct. Some examples of gross misconduct include, but are not limited to, fighting on the job, working under the influence of illegal drugs or alcohol, insubordination toward a supervisor, stealing, falsification of University records, etc. If terminated due to gross misconduct employees are subject to losing accrued and unused annual leave and rights to continuation of health insurance under COBRA.

Additionally, employees terminated under the above conditions are given the right to appeal the decision covered under the Grievance Process and Conflict Resolution Policy.


Involuntary Separations - Faculty

Involuntary termination of faculty should be in accordance with procedures established through the Office of the President and the Provost. Additional information may be found in the Faculty Handbook at http://www.memphis.edu/aa/resources/facres/facultyhandbook/index.php.


Involuntary Separations - Temporary Employees

Temporary employees may be released from their employment at any time during their appointment. Notice is not required; however, an Employee Separation and Clearance Form must be initiated to begin the separation process.  The submission of this online form will result in the notification via e-mail of affected University departments. All approvals are obtained electronically during the routing of the form. The employee, the supervisor/manager, and the submitter of the form will also receive copies of this notification.


Removal of System Access

Supervisors are responsible for ensuring that an Online Separation and Clearance Form is completed for his/her employee prior to their last day of work. As a result of completing the aforementioned form, systems access will be removed by IT Security Officers.


Separation Notices

Every employee who terminates employment with the University may file a claim for Unemployment Insurance Benefits with the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development or their resident state’s local unemployment office. Upon request, a copy of the separation and clearance notice may be obtained through the Office of HR Records Management. 


Rehire Eligibility

The University reserves the right to designate a separating employee as ineligible for rehire. All designations of “Not Eligible for Rehire” must be approved by the AVP/Chief Human Resources Officer, or designee. A memo with supporting documentation outlining the reason for an ineligible rehire status must be submitted to the AVP/Chief Human Resources Officer. The “Not Eligible for Rehire” designation will remain in effect indefinitely. Once approved by the AVP/Chief Human Resources Officer, the employee will receive notification of this status during the Exit Meeting.


Separation Checklist

https://umwa.memphis.edu/sep-clear/resources.php


Appointing/Terminating Officials by Employee Category

Listed below are the appointing/terminating officials for each employee class.  

Faculty (full-time) – President/Provost

Faculty (part-time) – Provost

Administrative/Professional - AVP/Chief Human Resources Officer

Clerical/Support - AVP/Chief Human Resources Officer

Temporary Employees –  Supervisor/Department Head
 



FAQs


Who do I contact for further information?

HR Records Management at emprecords@memphis.edu

Employee Relations and Engagement at emprelations@memphis.edu



Links


Data Access Policy

http://umwa.memphis.edu/umpolicies/UM1337.htm


Employee Separation and Clearance System

www.memphis.edu/sep-clear


eContract System

https://bf.memphis.edu/econtract/


Faculty Handbook

http://www.memphis.edu/aa/resources/facres/facultyhandbook/index.php


Grievance Process and Conflict Resolution

https://policies.tbr.edu/guidelines/employee-grievance-complaint-guideline

https://policies.tbr.edu/guidelines/support-staff-grievance


Performance Improvement Process

http://policies.memphis.edu/UM1557.htm 


Separation Checklist

https://umwa.memphis.edu/sep-clear/resources.php


Student Employment

http://www.memphis.edu/financialaid/student_employment/



Revision Dates


  UM1382 - Revised: December 10, 2015
UM1382 - Issued: December 2, 2003 - supercedes policy number 1:2D:05:04


Subject Areas:

AcademicFinanceGeneralHuman ResourcesInformation TechnologyResearchStudent Affairs
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