Careers at UMass Amherst

UMass Amherst COVID-19 Response: The University of Massachusetts Amherst is currently re-examining open positions as our campus monitors and responds to the novel coronavirus pandemic. At this time, hiring priority is being given to positions that are critical to academic, research, and business continuity. Searches for current openings may be placed on hold or cancelled. Candidates will be contacted directly by the hiring department with regard to the status of their current application(s). We appreciate your patience and flexibility during these unprecedented times and thank you for your interest in the University of Massachusetts Amherst.

Senior Labor Relations Representative

Apply now Job no: 508853
Work type: Staff Full Time
Location: UMass Amherst
Department: Human Resources
Union: Non-Unit Exempt
Categories: Human Resources

About UMass Amherst

UMass Amherst, the Commonwealth's flagship campus, is a nationally ranked public research university offering a full range of undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees. The University sits on nearly 1,450-acres in the scenic Pioneer Valley of Western Massachusetts, and offers a rich cultural environment in a bucolic setting close to major urban centers. In addition, the University is part of the Five Colleges (including Amherst College, Hampshire College, Mount Holyoke College, and Smith College), which adds to the intellectual energy of the region.


Job Summary

Under general direction of the Director of Labor Relations, the Senior Labor Relations Representative-Student Affairs is responsible for overseeing the implementation and day-to-day administration of the University's collective bargaining agreements covering staff and graduate student workers within the Student Affairs portfolio.  The position will be the first point of contact for all Student Affairs offices on labor relations issues and be the functional lead for the Resident Assistants/UAW Local 2322 labor agreement.


Essential Functions

    • Building relationships with employee representatives, including union leadership
    • Serving as a University representative in union contract negotiations including drafting and vetting proposals, building management consensus on bargaining positions, and acting as a co- or lead spokesperson
    • Ensuring compliance with collective bargaining agreements and employment policies
    • Collaborating with administrative units on long term labor solutions and strategies
    • Assisting in training supervisors and managers on best practices in areas of performance management, discipline, grievance handling, and other LR matters
    • Coordinating the grievance process, including serving as a step in the grievance process.
    • Contributing to a labor relations model that ensures a customer service orientation for administrators and supervisors
    • Addressing key labor relations and personnel concerns in a timely and engaged manner
    • Providing in-the-moment guidance on performance management and discipline matters
    • Partnering with HR colleagues to effectively implement cross-functional solutions to common concerns
    • Consulting with Student Affairs leaders, supervisors, and employees to address workplace climate concerns and build more productive supervisory relationship
    • Working as part of a collaborative team of human resources professionals
    • Preparing correspondence and reports, attending meetings, researching current personnel issues and disseminating information related to personnel policies and procedures
    • Participating and delivering training regarding labor relations and employee relations on the campus
    • Responding to information requests
    • Leading or assisting with strategic HR projects and initiatives
    • Preparing and/or making formal presentations to all levels of university leadership, as necessary
    • Advising the Director of Labor Relations on matters of collective bargaining, contractual interpretation, and disciplinary matters


Other Functions

Performs other duties as assigned 


Minimum Qualifications (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, Education, Experience, Certifications, Licensure)

  • Bachelor’s degree and five (5) years of related experience in labor or industrial relations.  A Master’s degree in business, industrial relations, conflict resolution or related field may be substituted for two (2) years of the required experience
  • Experience with the collective bargaining process
  • Knowledge of employee and labor relations practices and federal and state regulations pertaining to labor issues
  • Knowledge of performance management practices
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills
  • Ability to work in a confidential environment
  • Exceptional levels of professionalism and tact


Preferred Qualifications (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, Education, Experience, Certifications, Licensure)

  • Master’s degree in business, industrial relations, conflict resolution or related field or J.D.
  • Experience in drafting and presenting proposals in bargaining
  • Experience in the public sector
  • Experience in higher education


Physical Demands/Working Conditions

Typical office environment 


Work Schedule

Monday - Friday, 8:30 am - 5:00 pm


Salary Information

Salary commensurate with experience


Special Instructions to Applicants

Please submit your application, resume, and cover letter. This position will remain opened until filled.


UMass Amherst is committed to a policy of equal opportunity without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, age, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, disability, military status, or genetic information in employment, admission to and participation in academic programs, activities, and services, and the selection of vendors who provide services or products to the University.  To fulfill that policy, UMass Amherst is further committed to a program of affirmative action to eliminate or mitigate artificial barriers and to increase opportunities for the recruitment and advancement of qualified minorities, women, persons with disabilities, and covered veterans.  It is the policy of the UMass Amherst to comply with the applicable federal and state statutes, rules, and regulations concerning equal opportunity and affirmative action.

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Human Resources

Visit Human Resources for more information on benefits, payroll, health insurance, retirement and general information about working at UMass Amherst.