Sometimes I see two variants of following sentence:
- "there are not any employees" in the department
- "there is not any employee" in the department
What is the correct sentence?
As long as you are referring to more than one subject, I would go with:
For referring to a single instance, I would go with "there is no"
If the topic has no plural form (or is rarely used with a plural form), then I would consider "there isn't any":
I think that not any is usually replaced by no or, in case you want to stress it, not a single, when applied to countable nouns.
When you shorten not to 'nt, you can use any with either the singular or the plural, but I think the plural is more common. With the singular I would use a single again instead of any. There seems to be a plural connotation to any.
I think these sentences are grammatically correct, but they sound off, the first on emore than the second:
Much more idiomatic would be either using a single, using no, or using the plural:
Of course, with mass nouns, you do use the singular together with any, although no can also be used: