Job Listings

Senior Employee Relations Specialist - Talent and Culture, Employee Relations (Hybrid)

West Virginia University
Job Location:
Morgantown, West Virginia
Human Resources


The department of Employee Relations in Talent and Culture at West Virginia University is currently accepting applications for a Senior Employee Relations Specialist.

About the Opportunity

This position provides senior-level employee relations support to HR Partners, employees and management regarding human resources policies, procedures, and documentation. This position serves as a point of advice, problem resolution, and facilitation in the areas of employee relations.

We strongly believe in work-life balance and keeping time for things we love outside our work. WVU offers generous benefits, including:

What You'll Do

Advise and Counsel

  • Provide leadership and small project oversight on employee relations investigations and employee issues.
  • Independently and/or as part of a team, provide advanced level advice, counsel or interpretation regarding WVU HR policies, programs, performance management (including performance appraisals), the disciplinary process, the grievance process and, any other workplace problem or issue.
  • Answer complex questions and resolve difficult issues presented by management or employees.
  • Provide experienced advice to supervisors and managers on appropriate disciplinary actions, policies, and procedures.
  • Provide complex consultative support and advice for other WVU HR staff regarding a multitude of issues, and when appropriate, collaborate with other human resource units so that the problems referred are handled efficiently and promptly.
  • Responsible for monitoring and initiating second follow up when necessary, to ensure that a high quality of customer service is provided.
  • Advise senior administrators, supervisors, faculty, and staff in employee and labor relations matters and organizational development.
  • Partner with administrators, supervisors, faculty, and staff and to investigate and resolve employee complaints. Lead the prioritizing and planning of investigations.

Human Resources Policies and Procedures Administration

  • Research, identify, and analyze complex employee relations/HR concerns/issues. Make appropriate presentations and recommendations to management.
  • Recommend and develop advanced employee relations/HR policies, practices and activities.
  • Audit and ensure uniform application of HR policies and procedures.
  • Assist in the development of University policy and procedure manual as it relates to the human resources function.
  • Conduct investigations (sometimes complex) involving questions, concerns, and complaints from managers, supervisors, and employees. These investigations can occur involving employees at all levels of the organization.
  • Research, interpret and provide information and guidance to employees, supervisors and management regarding:
    • Federal laws: Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA), Parental Leave Act, Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA), etc.
    • West Virginia statutes and state grievance decisions
    • West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission (HEPC) rules and policies
    • Chancellor's interpretative memoranda
    • Current and historical West Virginia University (WVU) policies and procedures
    • Analyze current trends in all matters related to employee relations, including legislative trends, and assists in developing of programs and processes to address them.

Consultation and Support

  • Facilitate resolution of complex human resource issues involving employment, employee relations, compensation and benefits, payroll, medical management, program change, and leave (annual, blood donation, catastrophic, CTO/STO, emergency closure, FMLA, grievance participation, holiday, inclement weather, medical military, parental, professional development for faculty and staff, sick, unpaid leaves of absence, witness/jury, work release, etc.). Promptly relates areas of concern to the supervisor when human resource issues have a potential liability to the institution.
  • Conduct complex organization audits to identify employee relations issues and recommend (take) appropriate actions to address and resolve those issues.
  • Lead in the development and delivery of interactive employee, management and leadership presentations based on trends in employee activities, changes in employment law, employee benefit evolution, employee safety and progressive development in human resources.
  • Develop internal employee relations materials regarding policies and procedures, compensation, employee benefits, employee safety, etc.
  • Lead in the preparation of presentations directed toward employees and/or management.
  • Participate in meetings with senior administrators, supervisors, and employees to resolve human resource problems; and may identify and address underlying problems or issues to allow proactive rather than reactive measures.

Grievance Administration

  • Investigate complex employee grievances and participate in their resolution, including attending grievance conferences and hearings as necessary.
  • Assist in the mediation of conflict, as needed and as appropriate.

Performance Review Administration

  • Provide direction and advice on WVU's performance management policies and program.
  • Provide advice and counsel on employee progressive discipline.
  • Provide direction to administrators, supervisors, faculty, and staff on development and action plans for employees.
  • Address complex performance management issues (i.e., performance reviews, training assessments, work plan development, discipline, etc.) Review complex correspondence for accuracy and suggest changes.

  • Bachelor's degree from an accredited college or University in human resource management, public administration, labor relations, business administration, law degree, psychology, or related field.
  • Master's degree in human resources or a related field preferred.
  • A minimum of three (3) years of experience involving:
    • Human resources/employee relations or related work experience.
    • Equivalent combination of education, training, certifications and work experience.
    • In depth working knowledge of human resource laws, including wage/hour statutes, Title VII, ADA, and FMLA, etc. Must have detailed understanding of the human resource body of knowledge.
  • Strong interpersonal skills with ability to interact at all organizational levels.
  • Strong communication skills in English, both oral and written.
  • Demonstrated ability to work and communicate in challenging situations including the use of diplomacy and strong listening skills.
  • Strong analytical skills to be able to research, analyze, and recommend conflict resolutions.
  • Strong consultative and customer service skills.
  • Results orientation - ability to overcome obstacles and get things done.
  • Knowledge of public sector programs preferred.
  • Considerable knowledge of the principles and practices of modern training, education and communications.
  • Knowledge of, and demonstrated ability in, media and employee relations, audiovisual communications and issues management.
  • Ability to develop and maintain a comprehensive employee relations program.
  • Ability to work independently and display creativity, exercise sound judgment, and demonstrate initiative.
  • Ability to read, analyze and interpret complex documents, laws, policies, etc.
  • Ability to respond effectively to sensitive inquiries or complaints.
  • Ability to write articles, brochures, collateral material and newsletters on a wide variety of subjects using original or innovative techniques or styles.
  • Ability to make effective and persuasive presentations on controversial or complex topics to senior management and employees.
  • Ability to define problems, collect data, establish facts and draw valid conclusions.
  • While performing the duties of this job, the employee is required to use a computer. Good knowledge of PC operations and software (Word processing and spreadsheet) are required. Good typing skills are also required.
  • Demonstrated ability to manage multiple tasks and prioritize as needed. Strong attention to detail.
  • Ability to maintain confidentiality and handle sensitive information appropriately.
  • Initiative and motivation to request, accept, and complete tasks as required.
  • Demonstrated strong customer service skills.
  • Demonstrated ability to work as a member of a team of diverse skill levels and expertise from multiple areas; functioning in an optimum role for team success.
  • Ability to travel to various locations within the WVU system including regional campuses. Some overnight travel may be required.


  • Professional certification preferred (PHR, SPHR, SHRM-CP, SHRM-SCP).
  • Valid Driver's License required.

About WVU

At West Virginia University, we leverage our talents and resources to create a better future for our state and the world. As West Virginia's land-grant university, WVU has three campuses that touch each corner of the state. The WVU System includes 518 buildings on 15,880 acres, Extension Service offices in all 55 counties, ten experimental farms and four forests.

From the groundbreaking R1 research of our flagship campus in Morgantown to the career-oriented programs of WVU Potomac State in Keyser to the technology-intensive programs at WVU Tech in Beckley - the contributions of WVU employees directly impact the 1.8 million people of West Virginia every day, no matter their role or position.

Service, curiosity, respect, accountability, and appreciation are the core values that unite Mountaineers, inspiring one another to work tirelessly and support others as they seek to reach new heights. After all, when you're a Mountaineer, impossible is just another mountain to climb.

To learn more about West Virginia University, visit View current career opportunities at

West Virginia University is proud to be an Equal Opportunity employer and is the recipient of an NSF ADVANCE award for gender equity. The University values diversity among its faculty, staff, and students, and invites applications from all qualified applicants regardless of race, ethnicity, color, religion, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, nationality, genetics, disability, or Veteran status.

Job Posting: Jan 6, 2022

Posting Classification: Non-Classified

Exemption Status: Exempt

Benefits Eligible: Yes
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