Startup Policy

Associate Dean for Research
Amended Date

Key Contacts 

For questions about the process, please contact the Manager, Accounting & Financial Analysis in the Finance Office.


Departments hiring new faculty 

Policy Purpose and Description

Detail the process for new faculty startup packages from the department’s initial estimate through the spending of the funds. 




Request to hire:

  • When a department submits a proposal to hire a tenure-track, clinical track, or lecturer faculty position, the department should submit an estimate for the Startup package needed to recruit the faculty member as part of their proposal.   
  • As part of the estimate, the department should anticipate cost sharing with CLAS to fund the startup package. 
  • Typical cost sharing for large startup packages is 1/3 department, 2/3 CLAS. 
  • Typical cost sharing for standard packages is that the CLAS cost share covers almost everything except moving, and the standard moving split is $2000 Department, $1000 CLAS.  If there are modifications made to the standard startup amounts requested, additional cost sharing may be required. 
  • Departments are not allowed to reduce their percent of cost share once the request for the faculty line is submitted. 

 CLAS Commitment:

  • Once a faculty line request has been approved, CLAS Finance uses the estimate submitted with the request to hire to determine the dollar amount of the CLAS commitment to the startup package. 
  • The CLAS commitment is reviewed with the Portfolio AD responsible for the department, and once finalized, is sent to the department. 
  • For new lecturers, the CLAS commitment is for a new computer package of $2000.  Any additional startup beyond a computer package needs to be negotiated with the Portfolio AD.  The department will be responsible for funding any additional amount. 

 Contract Negotiation:

  • If the negotiated startup package is higher than the initial estimate submitted by the department, the department will be, at minimum, required to fund the same percentage of funding that is detailed in the startup package returned to them in the CLAS Commitment Memo as well as in their initial request for the faculty line. 
  • Any additions to the approved CLAS startup commitment need to be copied to the CLAS Finance Accountant responsible for startup to ensure timely approval of startup packages.   
  • For example, if a department requests additional research funding and the Portfolio AD agrees to fund a portion of the increase, an email with the AD’s approval needs to be forwarded to the CLAS Finance Accountant responsible for startup. 

 Offer Letter:

  • Departments should use an up-to-date offer letter template to draft any new offer letters, as sections are updated each year. 
  • The offer letter should include all elements of startup funding: computer, research, moving, etc.   
  • For large startup packages, a startup excel template must be submitted with the request to hire, and attached to the EOD workflow.  See forms information below for template information. 

 Account Setup:

  • When a new tenure or clinical track faculty member has accepted an offer, CLAS Finance will setup a new MFK and Cost Center.  The grant program number and Cost Center will be unique for tenure and clinical track faculty. 
  • When a new lecturer has accepted an offer, CLAS Finance will use the generic startup MFK in each department with grant program 52570000.  If the department would like to use a Cost Center for a lecturer, they are permitted to use the 9XXX series of numbers that is unassigned to a specific faculty member. 


  • Faculty members are not allowed to start spending their startup funds until they are on campus and their appointment has started. 
  • Computer and Moving funds must be spent within the first year of their appointment. 
  • Research funds must be spent within the first four years of their appointment. 
  • Carryover beyond four years must be approved by the AD Research and is not guaranteed. 
  • Spending does not need to be in the category that is detailed in their initial offer but must be for research. 
  • For all personnel, the department should budget for both salary and fringe.  If the startup package includes an RA, the department should budget for salary, fringe and tuition.  Tuition should be funded from the same funding source as the RA’s salary and fringe.  For example, if an RA is funded with Department UICA funds, the tuition should also be funded with Department UICA funds.    


For startup estimate template or large startup excel template, contact the Finance Office.  

For offer letter template, contact CLAS Human Resources

Frequently Asked Questions

When will my new MFK and/or Cost Center be set up?   

These are set up in batches periodically as new faculty members are hired.  They will be ready before the start of the fiscal year in which the new faculty member’s appointment begins. 

Can I carryover my funds?   

Startup funds will be available for four years.  After four years, faculty may request carryover for one additional year.  Requests should be sent to the AD Research. 

Can I convert my funding from one category to another?   

Yes, funding may be converted between research, equipment and personnel.  If funds are converted to Grad RA, the startup funds need to cover the RA tuition as well as salary and fringe. 

Can I spend all of my CLAS funds first, then my Department funds?  

Yes and no.   

  • For moving funds, departments may spend the CLAS $1000 first, and then spend the Department funding, unless there is an agreement to split moving 50/50.   
  • For all other fund types, you must first spend where the initial amount was budgeted.  For example, if the department is covering research and personnel funds, and CLAS is covering equipment, the faculty member must first exhaust their department research funds before converting equipment to cover additional research expenses.

Related Information

See the Request to Hire policy.

Revision History

3/2021, 6/2020, 4/2020