Direct Compensation

Employee Handbook Section 4

Accuracy in pay

Please see Accuracy in Pay, Policies and Procedures Manual Section 5

Staff compensation system

The staff compensation system covers all professional, administrative, clerical and technical staff members at Western Michigan University. It does not include bargaining-unit employees, employees hired by contract, researchers, executive officials or senior administrative officers. A market-based compensation system is used to classify positions. Please see Staff Compensation System for details or contact Your HR Representative.

Temporary base pay increases for acting or interim appointments

From time to time, all employees are expected to assume some of the duties of a vacant position. However, it is only when an employee is appointed to a vacant position in an "acting" or "interim" capacity that a base pay adjustment should occur.

  • The employee must be appointed to the position by processing the appropriate appointment form.
  • Acting or interim appointments should only occur for vacancies longer than three months, but should not exceed one year.
  • The employee's temporary pay will be determined by the pay grade of the position in which the employee is acting.

Overtime pay

Please see Overtime, Policies and Procedures Manual Section 5

Reporting your time

Please see Reporting Your Time, Policies and Procedures Manual Section 5.


Payroll and Disbursements issues pay according to the pay schedule available at Payroll. You may receive your pay via direct deposit or pay card.

You may review a pay summary, which includes gross pay, deductions, net earnings, as well as sick and annual leave use and balances, via Self Service in GoWMU. For detailed instructions on accessing your pay summary, please visit Pay Stub on the Payroll and Disbursements website.

If you have a question about your pay, contact your supervisor. If further help is needed, contact Payroll and Disbursements.

Payroll choices

You will receive your pay in one of two manners: direct deposit at a financial institution or via a payroll card. You may select the option you prefer via Self Service in GoWMU.

Direct deposit

You may have your pay directly deposited at a financial institution. The direct deposit is normally received by the financial institution on the morning of each payday.

  • You can deposit your entire net pay or a portion of your pay to the account(s) of your choice.
  • You can establish direct deposit with most banks and credit unions. You may want to check with your bank or credit union regarding forms they may require to establish a direct deposit plan.
  • You may review, add or update your direct deposit information via Self Service in GoWMU.
  • For detailed instructions please visit Payroll.

Payroll card

If you do not select direct deposit, you will receive your pay via a payroll card. For more information about payroll cards, please visit  Payroll.

Payroll deductions

Payroll deduction is a method for automatically withholding money from your pay on a regular basis. The following deductions are available at WMU:

  • Annual fund. Employees may donate to the University through payroll deduction.
  • Dependent care flexible spending account. Employees may establish a dependent care flexible spending account which allows them to pay for dependent child or elder care with before-tax dollars. Forms are available from Human Resources.
  • Garnishments and wage assignments. The University does not wish to be involved in the personal financial affairs of employees. However, WMU is required to honor legal garnishments, wage assignments and levies. Western must withhold the required monies and submit them to the appropriate party, as prescribed by law.
  • Health care flexible spending account. Employees may enroll in a health care flexible spending account, which allows them to have pre-tax dollars deducted from their pay and set aside to pay medical expenses not covered under their health care plan.
  • Income tax. U.S. and state income taxes are required deductions under federal law. Taxes are withheld from every payroll, based on the employee's income and number of exemptions claimed. If exemptions change for any reason, contact Payroll and Disbursements.
  • Insurances. Payroll deduction covers employee premiums for most insurance plans.
  • Season tickets. Employees wishing to buy season tickets to on-campus athletic and cultural events may do so through payroll deduction.
  • Social Security. The Social Security Act requires that money be set aside for future retirement or disability benefits. The rate of deduction, set by the U.S. Congress, changes yearly. An equal amount is paid by the employee and by the University each pay period.
  • Tax-deferred retirement savings. A tax-deferred savings program (optional) is available to all employees.
  • United Way. Western sponsors an annual drive for United Way. Employees may contribute through payroll deduction.

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