This page contains information on joining OSPS after 1 October 2017, including any eligibility and documentation requirements.

You are eligible for OSPS if you:

  • are employed as support staff at the University or one of the participating colleges;
  • are under age 75

If you are a new employee you will join from first day of your employment, even if you are on probation or on a short-term contract.

If you work for a college and work irregular hours you can only join at the discretion of your employer. University employees join automatically.

Many of the college employers, including the University, also use OSPS as their auto-enrolment scheme. Please see the auto-enrolment page for more details.

Opting out

If you do not wish to join you will have to opt-out via Legal & General within one month of receiving your joining letter from Legal & General.. Please think very carefully before giving up the valuable benefits offered by OSPS. For more details, please see the opt out section.

At the University you may need to sign another opt out form if you are re-enrolled due to a change of contract, or auto-enrolled due to government legislation.


We strongly recommend that all new joiners complete a Member’s wishes concerning disposal of Death in Service lump sum (NOM1) form (23kb) to tell us their wishes regarding the death in service lump sum.

Please send us photocopies or scanned copies of your birth certificate or passport so that we can verify your date of birth. You can also bring us the originals in person but please make an appointment first.

New University employees can choose contribution tiers 1,2 or 3 if they return Pension Choice Form (APP5 DC) (16kb) within two months of joining.

All new joiners will receive a joiners letter from Legal & General.

Contribution tiers

New joiners will automatically join contribution tier 1 unless they choose otherwise. Please refer to the How much does it cost? section for more details.

Please note: If you leave one OSPS employer and join another one within one month you have to stay on the same contribution tier.

Salary Exchange

Certain employers, including the University, use Salary Exchange to collect employee contributions. Contributions taken in this way cannot be refunded to you if you leave the scheme with this option.

At the University you will go into Salary Exchange automatically from joining. If you do not wish to go into Salary Exchange you need to send the Salary Exchange opt out form to payroll after joining.

If your college uses Salary Exchange please ask the Accounts Office how their scheme works.

Promotion and regrading

If you are promoted into a non-support staff role or your post is reassessed as being a non-support staff one then you cannot remain in OSPS. At the University all posts at grade 6 or above are regarded as non-support staff so if you move to a post at this grade you will have to leave OSPS and join USS.

Different colleges have different policies on what posts they regard as support staff posts. For example, it may depend on the type of work done rather than the salary level.