With some advance planning, an employer’s Federal Work-Study (FWS) paperwork can be organized and the accompanying processes streamlined. To assist employers, the Work-Study Office offers the following helpful hints:
Before hiring any FWS students, employers are encouraged to:
- Discuss the hiring of FWS students with their agency’s Office of Human Resources. Determine what agency documents/forms the FWS students will be required to provide/complete. Ask if the hiring process can be expedited; FWS students need to begin earning their award as soon as possible (see Important Dates).
- Identify someone within the agency to process Billing Statements for all FWS students.
- Discuss the completion and routing of FWS paperwork within the agency (will the FWS student’s supervisor or the person responsible for Billing Statements also complete the Off-Campus Sign-Up Sheetand mail it to the Work-Study Office?).
- Determine how best to collect the FWS student’s paystub and Paycheck Receipt Form for each pay period.
- At interviews, always ask for the Work-Study Verification and remember to communicate realistic job expectations and work schedule requirements to the student.
After hiring a FWS student:
- Employers should complete the Off-Campus Work-Study Timesheet and forward the original to the Work-Study Office immediately. Before mailing, the person who will be processing the Billing Statementsshould be given a photocopy of each FWS student’s completed Off-Campus Sign-Up Sheet.
- The designated Billing Statement preparer should:
- alphabetically organize the photocopied Off-Campus Sign-Up Sheets for all FWS students,
- list all the students alphabetically on the Work-Study Paperwork Checklist form, and
- place the completed checklist and Off-Campus Sign-Up Sheet copies in a binder.
The Billing Statement preparer may use the Work-Study Paperwork Checklist to track their receipt of each student’s Work-Study Timesheet, paystub, and Paycheck Receipt Form for each pay period, thereby allowing the FWS student who missed a pay period to be more quickly identified and paid. The Work-Study Paperwork Checklist is meant to be a paperwork management tool and should be retained for your records.
- Immediately following each payroll, the Billing Statement preparer should complete the Billing Statementand begin collecting the documents required for reimbursement. For each FWS student listed on the Billing Statement, a corresponding original Work-Study Timesheet, photocopy of the paystub, and Paycheck Receipt Form must be provided EXCEPT for those whose paychecks are direct deposited and pay stubs confirm the direct deposit. Because FWS students must be paid at least once per month, the Work-Study Office expects to receive a Billing Statement with all students’ Timesheets and paystub copies attached at least once per month!
The Billing Statement preparer should use the Work-Study Balance Sheet to track the FWS student’s remaining FWS award. This will prevent having to make corrections on the Billing Statement, which cause delays in reimbursement.