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HR Terms to Know

Listed below is a helpful glossary of terms often used at the UofM in relation to Human Resources. This glossary can be helpful to onboarding employees who are new to the University's lingo.

  • ACA: The Affordable Care Act, which provides rules that make some employee groups eligible for medical benefits when they had previously been considered ineligible. More information about the ACA and how it affects employees at the UofM is available online.
  • Banner: The University's largest computer system, also known as an ERP system. Includes multiple modules used across the UofM, including Banner Finance, Banner HR, Banner Student, Banner Advancement, etc.
  • Chronicle of Higher Education: National higher education publication in which select faculty job postings are often advertised.
  • DataFacts: The University's background check vendor. Aside from most student employee positions, all new employees must clear a DataFacts background check prior to employment beginning with the University.
  • Deduction Code: Banner term that corresponds to a given deduction being withheld from an employee's payroll check. A list of deductions codes can be found in the HR Program Guide.
  • E-Class: A two-character classification system that identifies specific employee groups at the University. A list of e-classes can be found in the HR Program Guide.
  • E-Contract: The Web application where non-permanent employment contracts are routed and approved for the University. These include temporary employees, graduate assistants, student workers, extra compensation, faculty summer compensation, and more.
  • Earnings Code: A numerical code identifying specific types of earnings an employee can receive via employment at the University. A list of earnings codes can be found in the HR Program Guide.
  • Exempt/Non-Exempt: The Federal Labor Standards Act (FLSA) identifies work functions performed as being either non-exempt or exempt corresponding to whether overtime worked is compensable in that particular position. Frequently at the UofM, the terms "monthly" and "hourly" (meaning "paid by the month" or "paid by the hour") are used as synonyms for exempt and non-exempt but they should not be. Hourly/monthly refers to which payroll an employee is paid on; exempt/non-exempt refers to the type of work they are performing.
  • FAS: Faculty Administrative Services. This area of Human Resources formerly reported to the Office of the Provost. It is concerned with all employment issues related to University faculty, from hiring/posting, onboarding, faculty relations, etc.
  • Finance Program Guide: A web application featuring information of interest to those involved with the finances of the University. Features include an index/FOAPAL search, authorized signatures lookup, budget overexpenditure notices, and much more. The Finance Program Guide must be accessed from on campus computers or remotely via the University's virtual private network (VPN).
  • FOAPAL: Banner term for Fund/Org/Account/Program/Activity/Location. These numbers correspond to the University's accounting and budgeting process.
  • FMLA: The Family and Medical Leave Act, a federal law that provides job protection for family and medical leave in certain circumstances. More information about FMLA is available online, along with frequently asked questions.
  • FWS: Federal Work Study (FWS) is an allotment of dollars assigned to students that charges their work to the federal government rather than using University funds. Some students have federal work study; others do not. If hiring a student or graduate assistant using FWS, those funds should be expended first in a semester prior to University funds being used.
  • HigherEdJobs.com: A website that posts higher education employment opportunities for both faculty and staff. The UofM maintains a contract with HigherEdJobs.com that allows departments to request postings without cost. This feature is included on the WorkforUM posting actions.
  • HR Program Guide: A web application featuring information of interest to those involved with the human resources functions of the University. Features include an HR training guides, web time entry approval lookups, position lists by org & index, and organizational charts on demand. The HR Program Guide must be accessed from on campus computers or remotely via the University's virtual private network (VPN).
  • I-9: The federal form stating eligibility to work. The I-9 form must be completed within the first three (3) days of employment for any new hire of any type. More information about the I-9 form is available online.
  • Learning Curve: The University's training registration site. Departments across campus that offer training list their course offerings in Learning Curve and users may register for them online. Learning Curve must be accessed from on campus computers or remotely via the University's virtual private network (VPN).
  • OIE: The Office for Institutional Equity, which monitors the University's policy on equal opportunity and affirmative action in employment and education in that it will not discriminate based on race, color, national origin, religion, age, sex (except where sex is a bona fide occupational qualification), disability, where the person is a qualified disabled person, or because of their status as a qualified disabled veteran or veteran of the Vietnam era. OIE provides institutional leadership in promoting and furthering the University's commitment to equal opportunity and nondiscrimination for all members of its community. OIE provides a range of services that uphold values of equity and diversity, as well as support compliance efforts in the areas of equal opportunity, affirmative action, harassment prevention, nondiscrimination and Title IX.
  • Organizational Chart: The University provides a current organizational chart online. Changes or errors can be reported to Human Resources via a Request to Change Position Supervisor action in WorkforUM.
  • Payroll Schedules: A list of the dates involved in the University's payroll calendars, listing dates covered, pay dates, etc. A complete list of payroll schedules is available via the Payroll Web site.
  • Reclassification: A reclassification is an action taken on a staff position that modifies its duties enough that a new title is often needed. Reclassifications are processed through WorkforUM, often involve a change in salary, and must be approved by multiple departments before being finalized.
  • Retitle: A Retitle action is undertaken in WorkforUM to modify the rank of an existing faculty position. For example, a position of Professor may be retitled to Assistant Professor or Associate Professor when an incumbent retires and a replacement is found.
  • Request to Fill: The most common action taken in the WorkforUM system, a Request to Fill alerts department/college personnel and Human Resources to the need to post a vacant (or soon-to-be vacant) position.
  • SAMS: Short for the Staff Assessment Management System, this web application is where staff performance appraisals are performed, routed, and approved. The standard period for performance review for staff employees is May 1-April 30, with appraisals being due to Human Resources by April 30 each year.
  • SOC Codes: Short for Standard Occupational Category codes, SOC codes help define the types of duties a particular position will be performing. A full list of SOC codes is available online.
  • Suffix: In Banner, an instance of a position number being assigned to an employee will be accompanied by a suffix, which refers to an instance of a particular assignment being used. For example, an part-time faculty employee teaching two courses would often show two assignments to a position number in Banner, each with a different suffix. A list of commonly-used suffixes is available online.
  • WorkforUM: Powered by PeopleAdmin, WorkforUM is the University's applicant tracking, position management, onboarding, and faculty evaluation system. The public-facing portion of this site is viewable at https://workforum.memphis.edu. The internal portion of the site is accessed by those employees with the appropriate level of departmental access to Banner Finance. Training is available via Learning Curve. WorkforUM is used to post positions for staff, full-time faculty, temporary employees, and part-time faculty, and it is used for the appointment process for staff and full-time faculty. Other types of appointments are handled via e-contract.