Staff Personnel Manual (SPP)

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Effective: 4/2/1979

Revised: 11/1/2019

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SPP 002: Definitions

Terms used in this manual are defined as follows:

Arizona Civil Rights Division, a state agency authorized to accept, investigate, resolve, or make findings related to charges of employment discrimination.
Act of Violence
An intentional act that results in bodily harm, however slight, to another person and/or damage to the property of another in the workplace.
Americans with Disabilities Act Amendment Act 2008. To carry out the ADA’s objectives of providing “a clear and comprehensive national mandate for the elimination of discrimination” and “clear, strong, consistent, enforceable standards addressing discrimination” by reinstating a broad scope of protection to be available under the ADA.
Administrative Official
The individual with authority to make decisions and take action.
Affirmative Action
Those positive steps taken by an employer to ensure the provision of equal employment opportunity. Affirmative action regulations cover minority persons, women, persons with disabilities, and veterans. For federal contractors and subcontractors, affirmative action must be taken by covered employers to recruit and advance qualified minorities, women, persons with disabilities, and covered veterans. Affirmative actions include training programs, outreach efforts, and other positive steps.
A written document prepared by the mediator following a successful mediation. The agreement is signed by the parties involved.
Alternate Administrator
An administrator from another department or unit or at a higher rank than a supervising administrator, who will assume the responsibilities of the supervising administrator for key decisions involving a relative of the supervising administrator.
Alternate Duty Assignment
Work that eliminates, minimizes, or modifies certain lifting, walking, or other physical or mental requirements that prevent an employee from returning to his or her regular position. This may also mean performing all regular aspects of the job, but at a reduced number of hours per week.
Anniversary Date
The month and day on which an employee was hired.
Appeal Committee
A Human Resources designee and representatives of the Ombudsperson Committee, the campus University Staff Council, and the appropriate vice provost/vice president’s office. This committee reviews allegations of procedural violations related to reorganization or reduction in force submitted by an affected employee.
Resources such as money, negotiable securities, and property owned by or under custodial control of the university.
Assignment to Special Duty
The reassignment of an employee outside of his or her regular position to fill a business need while another employee is out on a leave of absence, to meet the needs of a special project of limited duration, or to staff a vacancy on an interim basis without observing established hiring and recruiting procedures for a minimum of 30 days and a maximum of one year.
Auxiliary Aids and Services
A public accommodation shall take those steps that may be necessary to ensure that no individual with a disability is excluded, denied services, segregated, or otherwise treated differently than other individuals because of the absence of auxiliary aids and services, unless the public accommodation can demonstrate that taking those steps would fundamentally alter the nature of the goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, or accommodations being offered or would result in an undue burden, i.e., significant difficulty or expense.
Benefits-Eligible Employee
Any regular employee in any classification regularly scheduled to work .5 FTE or more (20 or more hours) per week for an anticipated duration of 90 days or longer. As mandated by Arizona statutes, this employee is eligible for all benefits immediately, and coverage is effective the first of the pay period following enrollment.

Any employee (excluding graduate and student workers) who has worked an average of 30 or more hours per week using a 12-month look-back period is eligible for benefits (excluding paid time off and the qualified tuition reduction program) as mandated by the Affordable Care Act (ACA)
The Arizona Board of Regents.
Broadband Structure
A framework that groups a combination of job classifications into categories with career growth within each category related to performance and demonstration of increased skills, knowledge, and experience. Categories generally are representative of the major organization tiers.
Budgeted Salary Line
A salary line assigned a single position in a continuing state or local budget account.
Buyout Pay
An amount paid to an affected employee in lieu of layoff or reorganization notice period, layoff or reorganization period, and recall/reemployment rights whose position is eliminated due to reduction in force per SPP 213, “Reduction in Force.” Time accrued to a nonexempt employee at one and one-half hours for every hour actually worked over 40 hours in a work week.
Callback Pay
A guarantee of pay for a minimum amount of time when employees are called back to their work at times when they would not ordinarily have to work.
A biological, adopted, or foster child, stepchild, or legal ward, who is under 18 years of age, or 18 years of age or older, if the child is incapable of self-care due to a physical or mental disability.
The process of organizing positions into categories of work (classes) based on the similarity of duties, authority, and responsibility.
Classified Staff/Employees
Positions that are not considered faculty, administrators, or university staff and have certain protections as a public employee and whose primary roles are in clerical, administrative support, paraprofessional, or maintenance roles.
Comparable Position
Positions of similar FTE, job classification, and minimum qualifications that have been determined by the Office of Human Resources and the laid-off employee.
Compensatory Time
Time accrued to a nonexempt employee at one and one-half hours for every hour actually worked over 40 in a work week.
Consultant/Independent Contractor
An individual or organization contracted to perform a particular service where there is no right to control the person who does the work and no right to direct the manner in which the job is done. Payment for services must be made to the individual or organization contracting to provide the service.
Continuous University Employment or Service
Staff who have been employed by ASU without interruption in service. Service is defined as the length of time an employee has been employed in a benefits-eligible position.
Date of Hire
Date on which an employee was hired. Also known as employment date.
Day–to–Day Assignments
Actions involving work assignments, office space, travel, and other benefits.
This is not applicable to university staff. A progressive disciplinary action changing a classified staff employee’s assignment from a position in one classification to a position in another classification with a lower Market Reference Point (MRP). An employee has a right to a pre-demotion hearing before the effective date of demotion.
Unit(s) directed by a department head, director, chair, or equivalent title who normally reports to a dean, assistant/associate vice president/provost, vice president, vice provost, or president.
Department Time Administrator (DTA)
An individual who grants view/add/updated access to Time and Labor for approving time for employees in a department. In order for a request to be valid, it must include one or more ASU Department codes for time approval. This information should be entered in the role comments. This role may be assigned to multiple people within a department. Training is required for the DTA role.
Dependent Children
Children who are considered dependents for federal income tax purposes, and who have not reached age 30 as of the first day of the semester for which a special registration fee is granted.
Direct Threat
Condition or disability that poses a threat to the health and safety of self or others and prevents an individual from performing the essential functions of the position or participating in a program, service, or activity at a safe level even with reasonable accommodation. ASU must show both high probability of substantial harm and inability to reasonably accommodate.
A person may be disabled if he or she has a physical or mental condition that substantially limits a major life activity (such as walking, talking, seeing, hearing, or learning). A person may be disabled if he or she has a history of a disability (such as cancer that is in remission). A person may be disabled if he or she is believed to have a physical or mental impairment that is not transitory (lasting or expected to last six months or less) and minor (even if he or she does not have such an impairment).
Employee Assistance Office.
Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, a federal agency authorized to accept, investigate, resolve, or make findings related to charges of employment discrimination.
Employee Hire Action
A hiring official’s final selection of a job applicant for a specific position.
Persons employed by the university on a full- or part-time basis, including academic professionals, administrators, non-faculty administrators, classified staff, university staff, and faculty.
Equal Employment Opportunity
The assurance that all employment-related actions are based on objective, nondiscriminatory criteria. State and federal laws and regulations prohibit employment discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, sexual orientation, and gender identity.
Essential Function
Fundamental or core job duties of a position, distinguished from marginal duty.
Exempt Employees
Employees who are exempt from the Fair Labor Standards Act and are not eligible to receive overtime pay or compensatory time for hours worked in excess of 40 hours per week.
Extraordinary Event
Events that are sporadic (not annual, but typically one-time or first-time events), of regional, national, or international impact, and require six or more months of advance preparation time. Examples are: national athletic events; visiting international, political, religious, or renowned figures; and theater performances.
Building or site owned, leased, used, or controlled by ASU.
Full-time equivalency, based on a fiscal year of 2,080 work hours.
Full-Time Employee
Any employee working a planned and consistent work schedule at 1.0 FTE (40 hours per week).
Gender Identity
An individual’s personal sense of masculinity or femininity, including external characteristics and behaviors such as dress, mannerisms, speech patterns, and social interactions.
Grave Offense
An offense that could result in injury or loss of life, limb, or property, or impairment of university operations, or one of willful, malicious, or serious disregard of university policies or rules.
Health Care Provider
A doctor of medicine or osteopathy; podiatrist; dentist; clinical psychologist; optometrist; nurse practitioner; nurse-midwife; or clinical social worker, each of whom is licensed and authorized to practice in the state and performing within the scope of his or her practice as defined by state law; Christian Science practitioner listed with First Church of Christ, Scientist, in Boston, MA; to a limited extent, chiropractor; any health care provider from whom an employer or group health plan will accept certification of the existence of a serious health condition to substantiate a claim for benefits; and a health care provider listed above who practices in a country outside the United States and who is licensed and practices under that country’s laws.
Hiring Official
The individual who has authority to hire and terminate staff within a department.
Immediate Family
Parent, parent-in-law, brother, sister, spouse, child, grandparent, and any other person who is a member of the employee’s established household.
In-category Promotion
An in-category promotion occurs when an incumbent has consistently demonstrated skills, abilities, and competencies associated with a more complex job that can be within or outside the current job family, but within the same category, with a higher MRP, and includes an increase in pay.
Initial Probationary Period
Applicable only to classified police positions below commander level. The probationary period for employees assigned to law enforcement officer, dispatch, or police aide positions in the ASU Police Department is one year.
Competitive Promotion/Transfer Probationary Period: If an employee assigned to law enforcement officer, dispatch, or police aide positions in the ASU Police Department is promoted/transferred through a competitive process or focused recruitment, the probationary period is one year.
An intentional act toward another person(s) that results in reasonable fear for his or her safety and/or the safety of others in the workplace.
Job Family
A group of jobs having the same nature of work but requiring different levels of skill, effort, responsibility, or working conditions.
Laid-Off Employees
Employees who have been notified of layoff or are in layoff status.
Lateral Transfer
A lateral transfer results when an employee moves to a different department, unit, or college in the same job title, same MRP, and category. There is no change in pay as the overall scope of the position has not changed.
Law Enforcement Officers
Arizona Law Enforcement Office Advisory Council (ALEOAC)– or Arizona Peace Officer Standards and Training Board (AZPOST)–certified personnel, including police officers, corporals, sergeants, lieutenants, assistant chiefs of police, the chief of police, and other sworn personnel.
Layoff Effective Date
The date following the compensated period of time known as the layoff notice period.
Layoff Notice Period
The compensated period of time between notification of the layoff and the layoff effective date.
Layoff Period
The uncompensated period of time during which a laid-off employee has reemployment rights as provided by SPP 213, “Reduction in Force.”
For the purposes of SPP 403–08, “Salary Administration,” the university president, provost of the university, vice president, associate vice president, or dean.
Major Life Activity
Walking, sitting, standing, lifting, reaching, seeing, hearing, speaking, breathing, learning, working, caring for one’s self, and other similar activities.
Manual Warrant/Paycheck
A manually prepared warrant/paycheck not produced by the payroll system.
Market Adjustment
A market adjustment is initiated as the result of a compensation study. Market adjustments occur when the assigned Market Reference Point (MRP) of the job is adjusted.
Market Reference Point (MRP)
The statistical median of the surveyed data for positions assigned.
High: The highest limit of the market zone for a position above which an employee’s pay should not exceed.

Low: The lowest limit of the market zone for a position below which an employee’s pay should not be administered.
Market Zone
A designation for each job in each category that is linked through the Market Reference Point (MRP) to the external prevailing wage; all positions within an assigned grade have the same relative internal and external value. A market zone has a low and a high based on the category calculated from the MRP.
A confidential process whereby the mediator acts as a neutral party to assist disputing parties in resolving a complaint.
Minimum Qualifications
The required education, experience, and/or knowledge needed to perform the essential functions of a position.
Wrongful uses of assets (e.g., fraud, embezzlement, and conflict of interest decisions that result in financial losses).
Nonexempt Employees
Employees who are not exempt under the Fair Labor Standards Act and are eligible to receive overtime pay or compensatory time for hours worked in excess of 40 hours per week.
Non-faculty Administrator
Any nonclassified or nonstudent university staff employee, not covered by the Conditions of Faculty Service, who reports to a person below the level of vice president and who has a direct role in planning, organizing, directing, evaluating, and controlling a major university function. Specific positions shall be determined by the president consistent with the terms of this definition.
Notice of Layoff
The date the employee is first officially notified in writing of the layoff.
Notice of Reorganization
The date the employee is first officially notified in writing of the reorganization.
Office of Civil Rights, United States Department of Education, the federal office authorized to accept, investigate, resolve, or make findings related to complaints of unlawful discrimination in programs receiving federal financial assistance.
Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs, the federal office authorized to accept, investigate, resolve, or make findings related to charges of employment discrimination based on disability or Vietnam-era veteran status.
Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
ASU’s Office of Diversity Equity and Inclusion supports and fosters a culture of inclusiveness. We promote and assist with equal opportunity and diversity initiatives. We also provide university leadership and hiring officials with clear and accessible employment data, timely and effective consultation, high-impact training, and rigorous review of employment-related policies and procedures.
Office of University Rights and Responsibilities
This office investigates claims of discrimination, harassment and retaliation; reports to the Office of General Counsel.
Functions as a mediator between a grievant and respondent; a member or appointee of the Ombudspersons Committee.
Overtime Pay
Payment made to a nonexempt employee at a rate of one and one-half times the employee’s regular hourly rate of pay for every hour actually worked over 40 in a work week.
A natural parent, step-parent, adoptive parent, or surrogate parent.
Part-Time Employee
Any employee working a planned and consistent work schedule at less than 1.0 FTE (less than 40 hours per week).
Pay Differential
Additional compensation over and above the straight time rate of pay for certain designated positions.
Pay Status
Paid work and paid leave time as authorized by the administrative official.
Personal Data Form.
Performance-based Increase
Individual pay action initiated consistent with the results of a performance evaluation.
Performance Standards
Written statements describing how a job should be performed.
Permanent Disability
A physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities, a record of such impairment, or a perception of such impairment. Examples of impairments: asthma, tuberculosis, AIDS, cancer, angina, diabetes, hypertension, stutter, anxiety disorders, bipolar disorder, dyslexia, blindness or vision impairment, deafness or hearing impairments, and paralysis.
A job, occupied or vacant, involving a combination of duties and responsibilities requiring the services of one employee.
Position Abandonment
A position will be considered abandoned when an employee has not reported for work for three or more consecutive working days and is not on an approved leave.
The president of the university or the president’s designated representative, and the administrative director of the central staff.
PRN Employee
Any employee working an unplanned, unscheduled, and unexpected work schedule that meets all of the following criteria:
  • is a non-recurring work schedule with no guarantee of continued employment   
  • has an inconsistent (no commitment) number of hours; and   
  • must be paid on an hourly basis.
    Note: Positions with planned work schedule or hours are either part-time or full-time depending on FTE or standard hours.
    Procedural Review Board
    Representatives of the Office of the University Rights and Responsibilities; Office of Human Resources; the Office of the General Counsel; the Office of Human Resources; and the campus University Staff Council, review the analysis form and reduction plan prior to implementation of Reduction in Force and notice to affected classified employees.
    A change in current position resulting from a movement into a higher category that represents a major change in role and responsibility and includes an increase in pay.
    Qualified Individual
    Individual with a disability who with or without reasonable accommodation can perform essential job functions at ASU or receive services or benefits from ASU.
    Reasonable Accommodation
    Change or modification that enables an individual with a disability to enjoy equal opportunity and/or access. Examples: job restructure; flexible work schedule; reassignment to vacant position; reassignment to accessible facility; delivery of service to accessible site; provision or modification of equipment or devices; adjustment or modification of standards, qualifications, criteria, tests, training materials, or policies, provided fundamental alteration will not result from the modification; provision of qualified readers or interpreters; reallocation of nonessential (marginal) job functions; unpaid leave.
    Reassignment (Career Change)
    An employee moves into a different job title with a lower MRP or category for re-careering or organizational purposes. There may be a review of salary, which may result in a change in pay. In situations involving an involuntary move with a reduction in pay for a classified staff employee, due process steps will be followed. If an employee, during a competitive recruitment, is selected as the preferred candidate and that change results in a position with a lower Market Reference Point (MRP), the candidate’s salary offer is consistent with the recruitment notification of the market zone.
    Recall Right
    The right of a laid-off employee to return to the position held at the time of layoff.
    Recall Period
    The six month period following the layoff effective date, as provided by SPP 213, “Reduction in Force.”
    A change in title/classification without a salary change to recognize a change in the described duties and responsibilities.
    Record of Impairment
    A prior physical or mental disorder that no longer exists or qualifies as a disability, but is still classified as a disability. Examples: mistaken classification as “mentally retarded” or “learning disabled.”
    Receiving compensation at or above the upper value of the market zone.
    Reduction in Force
    The elimination of positions and layoff or severance of employment due to reorganization or budget constraints.
    Reemployment Period
    Timeframe between layoff/reorganization notice and layoff/reorganization period where an affected employee has reemployment rights as provided by SPP 213, “Reduction in Force,” or SPP 216, “Reorganization for University Staff.”
    Reemployment Right
    The right of an affected regular employee to receive priority consideration during the layoff or reorganization notice period and layoff or reorganization period for comparable vacant positions within the university that have not yet been posted and for which the employee is qualified.
    Regular Employee
    Any classified and university staff with a consistent work schedule for 90 days or longer, regardless of FTE. This status CANNOT be used for graduate and student workers.
    Rehired Employee
    The reemployment of any ASU employee. A rehired employee within 12 months of separation may be eligible for reinstatement of certain benefits.
    Reemployment by the university resulting from an administrative or legal decision.
    Reorganized Employees
    Employees who have been notified of reorganization or are in reorganization status.
    Reorganization Effective Date
    The date following the compensated period of time known as the reorganization notice period.
    Reorganization Notice Period
    The compensated period of time between notification of the reorganization and the reorganization effective date.
    Reorganization Period
    The uncompensated period of time during which a reorganized employee has reemployment rights as provided by SPP 216, “Reorganization for University Staff.”
    Includes spouses, children, grandchildren, parents, grandparents, brothers, sisters (including half-brothers and half-sisters), brothers-in-law, sisters-in-law, mothers-in-law, fathers-in-law, daughters-in-law, and sons-in-law of an employee.
    Individual pay action initiated by the manager to retain a key employee in a situation in which there is imminent probability of employee resignation/loss to ASU.
    Retired Employee
    An employee who has completed at least five years of continuous, full-time employment in the Arizona university system immediately preceding retirement, who is receiving a retirement annuity under an Arizona university-sponsored retirement program, who is at least 50 years old (41, if Public Safety Personnel Retirement System [PSPRS] employee), and whose employment has not been terminated for cause by the university.
    Retirement-Eligible Employee
    Any regular employee in any classification hired with the intent to work .5 FTE or more (20 or more hours) per week for an anticipated duration of 20 weeks or longer. This employee is eligible immediately and must participate in a mandatory retirement plan.

    Any variable employee in any classification (excluding graduate and student workers) who has worked 20 or more hours per week for 20 weeks or more in a fiscal year will be required to participate in a mandatory retirement plan.
    Salary Adjustment
    An adjustment of an individual employee’s salary within his or her current classification subject to availability of funding.
    Search Committee
    Group of two or more persons, including at least one affirmative action representative, appointed by the hiring official to review applications, interview candidates, conduct reference checks, and/or recommend candidates for hire.
    The carrying or using of lighted pipes, cigars, cigarettes, or tobacco in any form.
    Special Disabled Veteran
    A person entitled to disability compensation under laws administered by the Veteran’s Administration for disability rated at 30 percent or more, or a person whose discharge or release from active duty was for a disability incurred or aggravated in the line of duty.
    Specific Event
    Events that occur on a regular schedule that are not sporadic (annual events), have regional, national, or international impact, and require less than six months of preparation time. Examples are: ASU football games and Gammage performances.
    Sponsored or Grant Funded Position
    A position that is defined by the terms and conditions at time of hire, promotion, or transfer.
    Straight Time Rate
    An employee’s hourly pay rate determined by dividing the fiscal pay rate (not including differential pay) by 2,080.
    Supervising Administrator
    The administrator who is involved in the day-to-day assignments of staff in the department or unit in which the supervising administrator is employed, e.g., department chair, academic unit coordinator, department director, center head, or director. A dean, director, or vice president may be a supervising administrator if one of his or her relatives is employed in the same department or unit in which he or she is employed. A supervising administrator may participate in the day-to-day assignments of a relative in his or her department or unit but may not participate in the key decisions involving his or her relative in the unit.
    A person responsible for directing the work of subordinates.
    Temporary Disability
    A physical or mental disability that can reasonably be expected to resolve itself, allowing an employee to return to full duty without restrictions.
    The discontinuation of university employment due to resignation, retirement, voluntary termination, involuntary termination, or death. Laid-off or reorganized staff are not considered terminated employees until the expiration of a layoff or reorganization period.
    Taking and removing personal property with intent to deprive the rightful owner of it (e.g., removal of university property by a university employee that was not entrusted to that employee as part of his or her official responsibilities).
    Threat of Violence
    Any behavior that by its very nature could be interpreted by a reasonable person as an intent to cause physical harm to another person or damage to the property of another.
    See Lateral Transfer.
    The condition of having fewer women and/or minorities in a particular job group than would reasonably be expected given their availability within the work force.
    Undue Hardship
    Accommodation that would be unduly costly, substantial, or disruptive, or that would fundamentally alter the nature or operation of a university department, program, service, or activity.
    University-Sponsored Committees
    Committees listed in the ASU Roster of Boards, Committees and Councils and other committees such as task forces, steering committees, and selection committees appointed by a university official.
    University Staff
    University staff is an employment category comprised of non-academic staff and administrators. University staff are employed at will. As an at-will employee, university staff and ASU are entitled to terminate the employment relationship at any time and for any reason except an unlawful one.
    Valid United States Driver’s License
    Valid United States driver’s license.
    Variable Employee
    Any employee that meets one or more of the following criteria:
  •  inconsistent weekly work schedule (i.e., PRN positions), See PRN Employee definition.   
  •  short-duration positions less than 90 days, regardless of FTE, and   
  •  graduate and student workers.
  • Vice President
    An ASU provost, vice president, vice provost, or equivalent.
    Vietnam-Era Veteran
    Person who served on active duty for a period of more than 180 days, any part of which occurred between August 5, 1964, and May 7, 1975, and was discharged or released therefrom with other than a dishonorable discharge, or who was discharged or released from active duty for a service-connected disability if any part of such active duty was performed between August 5, 1964, and May 7, 1975, and who was discharged or released within 48 months preceding an alleged violation of the Vietnam Era Veterans’ Readjustment Assistance Act.
    Person who performs work for the university for no pay or benefits.
    All property owned, leased, used, or controlled by ASU where university work is performed.

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