To: OSU faculty and staff
From: Edward Feser, Provost and Executive Vice President
Mike Green, Vice President for Finance and Administration
1 July 2021
Dear Academic Deans, Divisional/Unit Leaders, Faculty and Staff:
Effective today, the university is lifting the freeze on hiring and off-cycle salary increases originally implemented on April 15, 2020. Unit leaders and hiring managers should return to standard approval processes at the college and administrative division level. Hiring actions currently in the system and pending must complete the exceptions approval process.
Recall that we implemented the freeze to preserve maximum financial flexibility in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic and great uncertainty regarding future tuition earnings, state funding and other revenue sources. The freeze proved to be an important part of OSU’s strategy for managing the budget during the pandemic and contributed significantly to reducing net financial losses in many academic, auxiliary, and administrative units in fiscal years 2020 and 2021.
We appreciate all managers’ adherence to the freeze guidelines and patience with the associated exception approval process. We know the latter introduced additional steps and paperwork. We also appreciate all employees’ understanding of these measures and their importance even while many experienced their own personal and family challenges during the pandemic.
As we return to our usual hiring practices, we express caution that the university still faces uncertain financial conditions, particularly as next year’s enrollment has still not fully taken shape. Also, academic and administrative units’ capacity to hire varies widely depending on their revenue sources. We advise deans, division leaders and other managers to continue to review hiring plans very carefully considering actual and projected budget capacity, given continuing enrollment uncertainty and the need of many units and the university overall to recover from net losses accumulated over the course of the pandemic.
Provost and Executive Vice President
Vice President for Finance and Administration