Mark Your Calendar: Upcoming Open Enrollment Events

With MSU’s Benefit Open Enrollment period rapidly approaching (October 1–31), you may have questions about your benefit options for the 2024 plan year. We are ready to answer your questions and help you enroll in your 2024 benefit options.

Mark your calendars and join us at the following events:

MSU Benefits Fair

Visit the fair to enroll in your benefits on-site or speak with MSU benefits providers and HR staff. Delta Dental will be offering presentations during the fair about the new Delta Dental PPO Premium plan option, and the MSU Pharmacy will provide flu shots from Noon to 5:00 p.m. by appointment only.


  • Benefits Fair: Thursday, October 12 from Noon to 7:00 p.m.
  • Delta Dental Presentations: 2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. AND 3:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
  • Flu Shots: MSU Pharmacy will provide flu shots from Noon to 5:00 p.m. by appointment only.


The MSU Benefits Fair will be held at the Breslin Student Events Center Concourse. Fair attendees should use Parking Lot 63.

Learn more about the MSU Benefits Fair on the HR website, including how to make an appointment for your flu shot, Delta Dental presentations, parking information, and participating providers.

HR Site Labs

MSU HR will be available to answer questions and help you enroll in your benefits at the following site labs.

When and Where:

  • October 18 | 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. | Virtual (see HR Site Lab webpage for virtual link)
  • October 24 | 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. | International Center, Spartan Rooms A and B
  • October 31 | 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. | HR Building, Room 125

Learn more about the HR Site Labs on the HR website, including directions, parking information, and how to join the virtual site lab.

As always, you can find information on all things Open Enrollment on the HR website. In addition to the events above, the HR Solutions Center is available to answer your questions at or 517-353-4434.

Time to Choose Your Benefits for 2024: Your Open Enrollment Checklist

October is just around the corner, which means the MSU Benefits Open Enrollment period (October 1-31) is about to begin for benefit-eligible employees. Please use the following checklist to help guide you through Open Enrollment and be sure to make your benefit selections for the 2024 plan year between October 1-31.

1. Determine your benefit needs

During Open Enrollment (October 1-31), you may enroll in, change, or cancel coverage in the following benefits:

  • Health
  • Dental
  • Flexible spending accounts (health and/or dependent care)
  • Life or accidental death and dismemberment insurance
  • Some voluntary benefits, including vision, legal, and critical illness insurance.

Make sure you review your Open Enrollment guide carefully and choose the best benefit plans for your family. You may not make changes to the above benefits outside of the Open Enrollment period unless you have a qualifying life event, so be sure to review your options and take action in October.

2. Complete the spouse/other eligible individual (OEI) affidavit

If you want to cover a spouse/OEI on your health care plan in 2024, you MUST complete the affidavit online through the EBS Portal every year. Find instructions to complete the affidavit as part of Open Enrollment. After you complete Open Enrollment in the EBS Portal successfully, you should receive a confirmation email. To receive the confirmation email, you must complete all the Open Enrollment prompts in the EBS Portal and then review and save your plan selections (even if you made no changes); you cannot simply answer the affidavit question and then exit the portal.

3. Review updates for the 2024 plan year

Updates for the 2024 plan year include:

  • We are pleased to offer a new dental plan option, Delta Dental PPO Premium, in addition to the existing dental plan options. Be sure to attend this year’s MSU Benefits Fair so you can listen to a Delta Dental presentation about the new plan option.
  • Employees who live outside the state of Michigan but within the U.S. will now have the option to enroll in the new BlueCard Out-of-State plan. Coverage for this plan is similar to the Blue Care Network plan but allows individuals who live outside the state of Michigan to enroll.
  • Due to recent contract negotiations, eligibility for the Consumer Driven Health Plan (CDHP) with Health Savings Account (HSA) has expanded to include APSA and CTU employees who live outside the state of Michigan. POAM, non-union support staff, faculty, and academic staff are still eligible to enroll.

Find all new and notable information on page 5 of your Open Enrollment guide.

4. Make your changes online before October 31

If you want to make changes to your benefit selections and/or cover a spouse/OEI on your benefit plans, you must participate in Open Enrollment between October 1-31 (view enrollment instructions).

5. Participate in the MSU Benefits Fair or an HR Site Lab

  • MSU Benefits Fair: We will be having an in-person benefits fair on Thursday, October 12 from Noon to 7:00 p.m. at the Breslin Student Events Center on campus. MSU benefit providers and HR staff will be available to answer questions and/or help you enroll in your benefits on-site. 

    The MSU Health Care Pharmacy will be offering flu shots during the fair between Noon at 5:00 p.m. by appointment only. The appointment calendar (managed by MSU Health Care Pharmacy) will close when all appointments are filled or 48 hours prior to the event. Make an appointment here.

    Delta Dental will be offering presentations about the new Delta Dental PPO Premium plan during the fair from 2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. and again from 3:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
  • HR Site Labs: MSU HR will offer site labs on October 18 (virtual), October 24 (in-person at the International Center), and October 31 (in-person at the HR building). Consider attending if you have questions about your benefit options or need assistance with enrollment. 

We hope this checklist is helpful as you prepare for and participate in Open Enrollment this year. You can find all the details about Open Enrollment on the HR website, including links to the appropriate benefits guide, enrollment instructions, and detailed benefits information from our providers.

Questions? We’re happy to help! We encourage you to attend the MSU Benefits Fair or an HR Site Lab to ask questions. You may also contact the HR Solutions Center at or 517-353-4434.

Your Top Questions About MSU’s Optional Retirement Plans

Whether this is your first job out of school, or you’ve been working for 40+ years, it’s important to make sure you’re taking advantage of every opportunity to prepare for your eventual retirement. Most benefit-eligible employees* are aware of and enrolled in the 403(b) Base Retirement Program (BRP) offered by MSU, which consists of a 5% employee contribution of your eligible compensation and a generous university matching contribution of 10% – an immediate two for one match of your investment – for a total contribution of 15%. While this provides a great foundation for your retirement savings, most employees will eventually want to consider additional savings options for their retirement.

In addition to the BRP, eligible employees also have the option of enrolling in two additional retirement programs: the 403(b) Supplemental Retirement Program and the 457(b) Deferred Compensation Plan. Enrollment in one or both optional programs can help employees meet their retirement savings goals so they can more easily transition to retirement.

We’ve compiled a list of the top questions we receive as employees think about enrolling in these optional plans:

  • Q: Is there a minimum amount that must be contributed to one of the optional plans? What about a maximum amount?

    A: Employees may elect any percentage contribution, as all contributions are based on a percentage of eligible pay. For example, 1.50% would be an acceptable contribution election. Employees wishing to contribute a certain amount, such as $100 per paycheck, can use the calculating tool for converting a dollar amount to a percentage.

    Maximum contribution amounts are set by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) each year. Information on current IRS limits, including Age 50 Catch-up contributions, can be reviewed at maximizing your retirement plan contributions.
  • Q: Does contributing a small amount – such as $25 a month – make a difference in the long run?

    A: We encourage employees to work with their financial advisors or retirement vendors for assistance in deciding how much more to contribute. You may be surprised how a small contribution over a long period of time can impact your retirement account balance and may want to take advantage of compounding earnings as you save for retirement.
  • Q: What are the main differences between the 403(b) Supplemental and the 457(b) Deferred Compensation Plan?

    A: Generally, the differences are when an individual can access the funds and the loan provisions. Also, the 403(b) Supplemental contributions must be added with the Voluntary 403(b) Base contributions when calculating the IRS maximum contributions, whereas the 457(b) Deferred Compensation Plan has a separate IRS maximum limit. A more detailed comparison of the two different optional accounts can be found in the Retirement Plans Comparison chart.
  • Q: Can I enroll in an optional retirement plan account at any time?

    A: Yes, retirement plan elections can be made at any time. This includes beginning or canceling enrollment, increasing or decreasing contribution percentages, and changing vendors. Depending on payroll schedules and deadlines there may be a delay when the contributions start/stop. More detailed information can be found on the HR website at Enroll or Make Changes to Retirement Plans.

For more information about available retirement plans from MSU, please review the retirement resources on the HR website and the MSU Retirement Plans Enrollment Guide. Find instructions to enroll in these optional retirement plans at any time throughout the year. Please contact the HR Solutions Center with any questions at or 517-353-4434.

*Note: Certain types of employees are excluded to participate in the 403(b) Retirement Plan. Please see the 403(b) Base Retirement Program Eligibility Chart for more detail. 

Job of the Week: International Business Center Assistant Director

This week’s featured job is an International Business Center Assistant Director position through the Eli Broad College of Business (posting 885237). The Eli Broad College of Business works to create and disseminate knowledge through collaboration and develop global transformational leaders who positively impact organizations and society. 

This position will serve the College of Business by coordinating promotional activities, organizing programs for faculty/students and developing the Unit’s budget with the University’s General Fund budget. The future International Business Center Assistant Director will also provide work direction to staff along with discussing contractual matters with external agencies/businesses.

The Assistant Director should have knowledge equivalent to a 4-year business degree or in a related field. Three to five years of related experience is also preferred for the position. 

To learn more about the Eli Broad College of Business, visit their website. To apply for the position, please submit a resume, letter of application and at least three professional references on the MSU Careers Website by August 29. 

Job of the Week: Benefits Customer Service Supervisor / Senior Human Resources Professional I/S

This week, our featured job is a Benefits Customer Service Supervisor position through MSU Human Resources (posting 874010). MSU Human Resources works to provide strategic human resources expertise, counsel and support services for the MSU Community. 

This position will serve Human Resources by providing timely customer service, answering questions from staff, students and retirees regarding benefits along with testing and rolling out new programs. The future Benefits Customer Service Representative will also coordinate outreach events, supervise the recruitment and hiring process in alignment with MSU’s HR’s Core Values. Find a list of all responsibilities on the MSU Careers Website. 

The future Benefits Customer Service Supervisor should have a four-year degree in Human Resources or a related field, several years of high-performance experience working in a benefits-related position and excellent written and verbal communication skills.

To learn more about MSU Human Resources, visit To apply for the position, please submit a resume and cover letter on the MSU Careers Website by June 27. 

Spring Break Discounts

Contrary to the weather in Michigan, Spring Break for many area schools is quickly approaching. Before finalizing your plans, review your exclusive employee discounts through MSU Benefits Plus to determine if any may be useful to your family.

To access all the discounts, visit the MSU Benefits Plus website and log in or sign up for a free account.

  • First Time Users: Enter your MSU email, click Get Started and fill out the form. You will need your MSU ZPID number, which is located on your MSU Spartan ID Card or in the EBS Portal. Use a capital “Z” when putting in your ZPID number.
  • Existing Users: Enter you email address and click Get Started, then enter your password and click Log In.


National Car Rental: Enjoy up to 20% off your reservation rate when booking through our exclusive link. Discount automatically applied with the link. 

Tickets at Work: Go someplace new in 2023 with up to 60% off exclusive hotel rates at top destinations worldwide. 

Wyndham Hotels & Resorts: As an MSU employee, you will save up to 20% off at over 8,000 participating hotels worldwide.

Universal Orlando Resort: Save on multi-day ticket packages to Universal Studios Orlando when you book through our exclusive link! 


Premium Seats USA: Save 10% on ticket purchases to professional and collegiate sporting events, including football, baseball, basketball, hockey, tennis, golf, auto racing, wrestling and more when you use promo code CORESTREAM. 

AMC Theaters: Save over 40% on E-Tickets at AMC Theatres. AMC Theatres® movie ticket products are good at any AMC Theatres®, AMC® Loews, AMC Showplace, Cineplex® Odeon, Magic Johnson and Star Theatres, excluding Canadian theaters. 

Tiqets: Save over 40% on Museums worldwide. Access top museums across the country and around the world! Save an additional 10% at checkout, just for MSU Employees! Get $25 Restaurant gift certificates for only $5 when you buy through our exclusive link! 

Find these savings as well as many other discounts by visiting the MSU Benefits Plus website. The MSU Benefits Plus Customer Care Team is available to answer questions at 888-758-7575.

Your Benefits: New Year Checklist

For benefit-eligible employees, the start of a new year is a great time to review all the benefit options available to make sure you’re fully utilizing them throughout the year. The following list of tips and resources to consider will help you get the most out of your employee benefits:

  1. Schedule Wellness Check-ups: if you’re enrolled in an MSU health, dental, and/or vision plan, you’ve just entered a new plan year. Even though an annual check-up is usually recommended by doctors, many people miss out each year because they forget to schedule an appointment. Set your family up for success by scheduling any annual or wellness check-ups now.
  2. Prepare for Illness: Teladoc is an online medical care service that gives you 24/7 access to a health care professional via web, phone, or mobile app in minutes. A doctor can even write you a prescription if necessary. Enroll in Teladoc now so you’re prepared when illness strikes. Available to employees and their dependents that are enrolled in an MSU health plan.
  3. Review Retirement Contributions: the IRS sets new retirement contribution limits each year. Make sure you’re saving as much as you can by reviewing the 2023 IRS retirement contribution limits and make adjustments if needed.
  4. Note Flexible Spending Account (FSA) Deadlines: if you’re enrolled in an FSA for the 2022 and/or 2023 plan year, please note important deadlines and resources for utilizing your FSA funds.
  5. Use Educational Assistance Funds: support staff and academic specialist employees have access to educational assistance funds to use towards professional development opportunities. These funds reset each fall, so make sure you don’t miss out. If you’re looking for learning opportunities, we recommend checking out courses offered by HR’s Organization and Professional Development department.
  6. Note Mental Health Resources: the MSU community offers a variety of mental health resources to employees and their dependents.
  7. Save Caregiver Resources: the MSU WorkLife Office has an extensive list of resources for caregivers. Bookmark this page so you’re prepared when you need it.
  8. Schedule Vacation/Personal PTO: taking time to rest and reset is important to maintain mental health. Make sure you’re using all your PTO by planning out and scheduling your time off in advance.
  9. Employee Discounts: Visit the MSU Benefits Plus website for deals and discounts on everything from travel and experiences to electronics and toys. Additional discounts can be found on the MSU Human Resources website.
  10. Voluntary Benefit Options: you may enroll in, change, or cancel auto, home, and pet insurance benefits at any time through the MSU Benefits Plus website. Legal, critical illness and vision insurance only allow benefit changes during Open Enrollment in October.
  11. Register for Free Diabetes Management Program: if you or a dependent are living with diabetes, Livongo by Teladoc Health can help by providing free necessary medical supplies and optional coaching. Employees or dependents enrolled in Medicare are not eligible.
  12. Get a Second Medical Opinion: if you are facing a serious medical diagnosis, Teladoc Medical Experts can review your case and offer a second medical opinion from leading health care specialists. Coaching and online educational tools are also available. Employees with mandated insurance under the ACA are not eligible.

We hope this list will help keep you on track as you plan out how you and your family will use your employee benefits this year. You can learn more about these benefit options on the HR website.

Don’t Forget Your MSU Discounts this Holiday Season!

As a benefit-eligible MSU employee, you have access to various discounts and savings that can help you during the holiday season. On the MSU Benefits Plus website, you will find special offers on products such as electronics, toys, and more!

To access all the discounts, visit the MSU Benefits Plus website and enter your MSU email, click Get Started and then enter your password. First-time users will need to enter their email, click Get Started, and fill out the form. You will need your MSU ZPID number for the form, which is located on your MSU Spartan ID Card or in the EBS Portal.

The following are a few of the deals you will find (please note these discounts are frequently updated):

  • Apple: save with employee pricing on iPhones, iMacs, and more.
  • Bombas: new users get 20% off their first order.
  • CanvasWorld: turn photos into art with 25% off plus free shipping.
  • Chordify: 60% discount on a Chordify Premium yearly subscription to access unlimited songs to learn for guitar, piano, or ukulele.
  • Dell: save up to 30% on select PCs.
  • Garmin: 20% discount on wearables and smartwatches.
  • GE Appliance Store: save up to 35% on small appliances with free delivery over $499.
  • Harry and David: 20% off your order.
  • HP: up to 52% off computers and accessories.
  • Kiwi Crate: 40% off your first month’s subscription.
  • Lenovo: laptops start under $400 with savings on top tech up to 70% off.
  • Sam’s Club: save over 55% on a new club membership.
  • Scott’s Cheap Flights: 50% off a premium membership.
  • Tickets At Work: save on movie tickets at dozens of participating theater chains.

The HR website also offers other deals you can find on-campus through the MSU Tech Store, MSU Bakers, and the Kellogg Hotel & Conference Center, among others.

For more information on discounts through MSU Benefits Plus, visit the HR website. If you have any questions about the discounts, please call MSU Benefits Plus at 888-758-7575.

Job of the Week: Director of Benefits

This week, MSU Human Resources is excited to feature an opening within our Executive Management team, the Director of Benefits (posting 818366). MSU Human Resources supports university strategic imperatives by anticipating and meeting the needs of a changing community through high-quality, innovative services designed to advance student success and cutting-edge research. The Benefits team within HR administers the extensive employee benefits package at MSU.

The Director of Benefits will join a dynamic leadership team committed to collaboration, inclusion, excellence, transformation, and care. The University’s biggest investment and most important asset is the exceptionally talented faculty and staff at the core of the Spartan community. MSU Human Resources is at the heart of it, providing strategic people solutions for the MSU community.

The Director of Benefits supervises the Assistant Director of Benefits, Retirement Program Manager, and Benefits Accounting and Budgeting Manager and will provide leadership over policies, activities, and strategic planning for student, retiree and employee benefits. They will partner with key campus stakeholders and coalitions to help provide cost-effective benefits coverage while enhancing access and wellness opportunities. For a list of duties and responsibilities, click here.

HR’s future Director of Benefits is a strong team leader committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion, with a bachelor’s degree, preferably an advanced degree, in business or a related field. Their work knowledge and work experience should include benefits management, federal, state, and local regulations and compliance requirements related to benefits administration. They also need strong analytical and problem-solving skills, technical database aptitude, and the ability to interpret and communicate data.

To learn more about Human Resources, visit To apply for this position, prepare a resume and cover letter and apply here. Application review begins October 31, and the posting will remain open until filled.