New Employee Q&A

The Magnet Lab is a great place to work that offers growth, support and cultural diversity. Like most large institutions, you’re going to encounter some administrative procedures. The Q&A below helps you through this process.

There are tons of helpful links, but many of them won’t work unless you are logged into the lab’s web portal.

  • What do I do first?

    Most important is getting paid. If you are funded through the NHMFL, make sure you have completed the Employee Wizard forms. This is required paperwork needed to place you on the payroll. This information should be printed, signed and submitted to your department coordinator.

    For further assistance, see the New Employee Checklist. Remember, HR is always available to help as well.

  • How can I change my contact information (name, position title, email, phone, etc.) on my MagLab personnel page?

    Contact your department coordinator to make these changes for you.

  • What about my benefits?

    Visit FSU’s Office of Human Resources, which provides an on-line orientation session. Click ‘New Employee Information’ and then Online NEO and follow the steps. The orientation will give you information on insurance, retirement and other FSU benefits including information on the FSU card, OMNI access, etc.

  • My computer?

    Make sure you meet with computer support as soon as possible and get set up.

  • OK, so my badge?

    Before you can get your badge, you must complete safety training and talk to your supervisor or department coordinator about what kind of badge you need (there are ID badges and ID badges with after-hours access). See Colleen Davis in the Safety Department (645-0777) to have one made. And yes, you need to wear it all the time.

    Don’t forget about your FSU ID. You will need this ID to look at your pay stub online in the OMNI system. What is OMNI? This is the FSU resource website where you access your paycheck and personal information. Check with HR or your department representative to access. You obtain your FSU ID from the Card Center on campus, located on Woodward Avenue at Parking Garage #1.

  • What is the footwear policy?

    Open-toed shoes are not allowed in labs or rooms that contain chemicals, cryogens or magnets; OPMD building; machine shops; the plant area; or in electrical rooms. You can read the whole policy, and many others, on the Safety Portal. If you need to visit these areas regularly, keep a pair of extra shoes in your office.

  • How do I deal with setting up my voicemail?

    Pick up your phone and dial 4-6245 (at FSU, you don’t have to dial the full 644 or 645, though nothing bad will happen if you do). Because you are new, your password should have been reset to “1234”. If it hasn’t, ask your department coordinator for the password; if the password is not known and your supervisor says it’s OK, fill out a  facilities work order (please read the section on phones). Once you’re in the system, just follow the prompts.

  • What is the password for wireless? 

    The building has several wireless passwords; ask someone in your group or in computer support (they are very nice). Their email address is This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

  • This place is huge. Where is everything, and what is the “OPMD?”

    Yes, this place IS huge — 370,000-square-feet huge, and not all of the MagLab is even in this building. “OPMD” stands for “Operations and Magnet Development building” and is where most of our DC Field facility is located. The Applied Superconductivity Center is across the street in the Shaw Building. The hard-copy map you’ve received (didn’t get one? See the front desk or HR) is color-coded to the signs and paint on the building walls. 

  • Can I have somebody show me around?

    Yes! Please join in the lab’s public tour on the third Wednesday of the month at 11:30 AM. You should receive a reminder email a day or two beforehand.

  • English is my second language. How can I meet other lab employees who speak my first language?

    Human Resources keeps a partial list of languages spoken at the lab; see Bettina Roberson or Miranda Hacker to get started.

  • When are timesheets due?

    Timesheets are due every other Tuesday, except around the holidays, when they are typically due earlier to meet holiday deadlines. You’ll get email reminders to turn them in. Since your supervisor must sign them anyway, walk through your first couple of timesheets with him or her.

  • How often do we get paid?

    Lab employees are paid on a bi-weekly schedule. The pay periods begin on a Friday and end on a Thursday. That means payday is the Friday of the week following the pay period ending date.

  • Where can I find general information about HR-related matters, such as benefits, when we get paid, that sort of thing?

    Your portal login is one of the first things you’ll get from computer support. Once you have it, go to Management and Administration and then HR on the portal. There’s a list of HR FAQ to review!

  • How do I get a key to my office or lab?  

    Key requests should be made through department coordinators, who will complete a key request form and submit it to the safety department. Allow three business days for keys to be received.

  • How do I buy something?  

    That all depends on how your department likes to handle purchasing. Some departments run purchasing through departmental coordinators, others like to have employees do their own purchasing (especially for small items). Regardless, it’s a good idea to talk to your manager first about the purchase (especially if it’s not budgeted). The purchasing department has prepared a PowerPoint that takes you through the process step by step. The price of the item or service you want to purchase also affects the process. Items greater than $6,000 require competitive bidding. These and other considerations are outlined in a purchasing flow chart prepared by the lab’s purchasing department. If you are ever in doubt, contact the purchasing department.

  • I need to travel for a conference. Can I just make the arrangements and get reimbursed when I return?  

    Before you go anywhere, if you expect to be reimbursed, you must first receive travel authorization, which includes a statement indicating that the travel is for official business and the purpose of the travel. As part of this process, which is usually handled by the department coordinator, you’ll be asked to estimate the travel time (number of days), airfare, hotel expense, etc. The coordinator then uses that information to obtain travel authorization. Once you’re back from travel, you’ll need to have proof of your flight/travel, rental car, hotel stay, etc. for reimbursement. The ins and outs of travel (such as what you can and cannot be reimbursed for, and other regulations) can be found on FSU’s finance and administration website.

  • Can I check my voice mail when I’m away from the office?  

    Sure, you can even change your away message. Just do the same thing you would if you were at the office (only you’ll need to dial the full 644-MAIL extension).

  • I want to move my office furniture into a different configuration. Should I just go ahead and do it?  

    Unless it’s something very small, we don’t recommend it! To move heavy office furniture, fill out a facilities work order. Do the same if you want to get rid of unwanted office furniture. If you get rid of a piece of furniture or move it to another office, notify purchasing, which keeps track of inventory and needs to know when equipment or furniture is moved.

  • My office has old or broken equipment in or near it. Can I just throw it away?

    No. All equipment — printers, computers, scanners, fax machines — must be accounted for. Before you get rid of anything, contact purchasing for instructions on how to proceed. This is especially critical if the item has an inventory tag (which looks like a bar code). The lab is fined for inventory that it cannot locate.

  • Can I take my laptop home with me?

    In general, yes, but clear it with your supervisor first. Important: Don’t remove it from the premises until you have completed an Equipment Use Request form (ER244). The form requires you to obtain authorization in writing before taking your laptop home (or on a trip, or even to a meeting in town). This also is true for other equipment (cameras, projectors, etc.), even if the equipment is to be used temporarily, in collaboration with other facilities, universities, or per contract/grant requirement. If removal of the equipment is permanent, contact purchasing.

  • I have a serious ant problem in my office! What should I do?

    Let facilities know by filling out a work order.

  • The heat in my office isn’t working and I’m freezing! Help! 

    Complete a work order.

  • The faucet in the ladies restroom won’t turn off. Who should I call?

    Call facilities at 644-0526 if it’s urgent, but otherwise — you guessed it — fill out a work order.

  • I read something on the website that is out of date or incorrect. Who should I tell?

    E-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with the correct information, or if you don’t know the correct information, include a link to the inaccurate page.

  • I am about to work with a new chemical and am not sure how to handle it properly. Who should I talk to?

    Review the MSDS for the chemical and talk with the Safety Department regarding proper handling and disposal.

  • How do I dispose of my chemicals after I am done? 

  • Does the lab recycle? 

    You bet it does! The lab recycles paper, newspapers, books, magazines, plastic, aluminum cans and cardboard. You should see posters around the building explaining what the lab does and does not recycle. You also should see bins and containers for recyclables. If you have any questions about the lab’s recycling program, contact Sean Coyne.

  • Does the lab recycle batteries?

    Yes, take batteries to the safety department for recycling.

  • Where do you keep the free mugs and T-shirts for giving to visitors?

    There’s no such thing as free mugs and T-shirts, or other MagLab swag. The lab is a taxpayer funded institution and cannot purchase such items. The MagLab Employee Fund offers such items for sale (pretty cheaply) and the meager profit is used to help buy food and other supplies for MagLab employee events (such as the spring picnic). For other info about buying MagLab items, contact Miranda Hacker.

  • Is there more information for Graduate students and Postdoctoral Associates?  

    The MagLab offers professional development sessions for graduate students and postdocs. For more information on these sessions and local information related to city transit, child care, and social events, please visit the following page: Postdoctoral Associates and Graduate Students.


For more information, please contact Human Resources Manager Bettina Roberson.

Last modified on 28 November 2016