Wildcat Statue

Cell Phone Service and Related Equipment Policy

Cell Phone Service and Related Equipment Policy

To allow Northern Michigan University to provide a stipend (subject to applicable taxes) for cell phone service and related equipment to employees whose duties and responsibilities require them to carry cell phones.

Employees with administrative and/or supervisory responsibilities as referenced in the specific procedures and guidelines outlined in the section entitled “Definitions.” Any exceptions will require written approval from his/her Vice President or President.

Supervisors may authorize a cell phone/equipment stipend for regular full-time employees whom they supervise if at least one of the following criteria are met:

  1. The job function of the employee requires time outside of his/her assigned office or work area and he/she must be able to conduct university business via a cell phone during those times.
  2. The job function requires the employee to be accessible outside of scheduled or normal working hours.

If authorized, employees required to carry a cell phone for university business will receive compensation in the form of a cell phone/equipment stipend.


Employee Cell Phone Service and Equipment: Employees who use their personal cell phone service and related equipment to conduct university business may receive a cell phone/equipment stipend as provided by this policy.

Departmental Cell Phone Service and Equipment: Departmental cell phones are cell phones that are to be used for business purposes only and no personal use is permitted. Departmental cell phone service and equipment are contracted for through the normal university purchasing procedures.=


Approval of Stipend:
A cell phone/equipment stipend may be requested using the Cell Phone Stipend Request Form. The form must be approved by the employee’s supervisor and forwarded to the Human Resources Office.

Determination of Stipend Amount:
The supervisor may authorize a monthly cell phone/equipment stipend that is based on the employee’s anticipated university business-related expenses. The following guidelines are to be followed by the supervisor in determining the appropriate cell phone/equipment stipend.

  • Standard stipend: Monthly cell phone service stipend is $50 plus $10 for equipment. Total monthly stipend is $60.
  • Maximum stipend: Employees who can document that their university business cell phone usage exceeds the basic stipend may request their supervisor approve a higher stipend based on their university business usage. The supervisor may authorize a monthly cell phone service stipend up to $100 plus a $10 equipment stipend for a total monthly stipend of $110.
  • An exception exceeding the above maximum stipend limit shall require written approval from his/her Vice President or the President. Exceptions for amounts less than the standard stipend may be approved by the supervisor.

Contracting for Cell Phone Service and Related Equipment:
Employees who receive a monthly cell phone/equipment stipend must contract for cell phone service in their own name and purchase their necessary equipment from any service provider that meets their needs. Contracts entered into by the employee and the service provider are between the employee and the service provider, not the university. The employee is responsible for the payment of all charges.

Establishing the Stipend:
Use the Cell Phone/Equipment Stipend Request Form located at http://www.nmu.edu/humanres/AdminPoliciesMan/PoliciesIndex.htm
Fill out the form completely, obtain the appropriate signature(s), and forward to university Human Resources for further processing.                                                                      


The cell phone stipend is paid through payroll and is included in the employee’s check/direct deposit. The stipend shows as a separate line item on the employee’s check stub.

This stipend does not increase the employee’s base salary and will not be included in the calculation of any university benefits. This stipend is subject to all applicable taxes.

Using the Cell Phone Service:
The cell phone service is personally owned by the employee and may, therefore, be used for both personal and business calls. An employee with a cell phone stipend must maintain an active cell phone contract while receiving the stipend.

Documentation and Review Requirements:
A copy of the completed Cell Phone Stipend Request Form must be kept on file in the employee’s department.

If an employee is terminated, resigns, transfers or is no longer eligible for a cell phone/equipment stipend, the employee’s supervisor must submit a revised Cell Phone Stipend Request Form to Human Resources noting “Discontinue stipend as of MM/DD/YY in the “Business Justification” section of the form.


Cell Phone/Equipment Stipend Request Form http://www.nmu.edu/humanres/AdminPoliciesMan/PoliciesIndex.htm


Date Approved:4-23-2008
Last Revision:4-23-2008
Last Reviewed:4-23-2008
Approved By:President
Oversight Unit:PURCHASING