Youngstown State University has labor Agreements with four Unions, YSU-ACE (Classified Civil Service Staff), YSU-APAS (Professional/Administrative Staff), YSU-FOP (Police) and YSU-OEA (Faculty).  Labor Agreements codify wages, benefits and what are commonly called "terms and conditions of employment." Each contract also prescribes a grievance procedure, which is a method to resolve questions of intent or differences of interpretation in an environment free from pressure, hostility, intimidation, and may on occasion call for arbitration (third party intervention).

Human Resources administers labor relations in accordance with Agreement implementation. Labor Relations staff members negotiate contracts, advise administrators in reference to contract interpretation and implementation, represent the University administration in matters that come before the State Employment Relations Board (SERB) and serve in a liaison capacity between the University administration and employee unions.