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Kansas State University Layoff Policy

For University Support Staff Employees

Chapter 4065
Issued  September 11, 2017 (originally developed as pdf in Mandated Placement policy, revised February 2007, October 2008 and December 2008)

Table of Contents

.010 Introduction
.020 Definition of a Layoff
.030 Layoff Notification to Division of Human Capital Services
.040 Organizational Units
.050 Geographic Areas
.060 Bumping Rights - Options for Employees
.070 Layoff Scores
.080 Layoff Notice to Employees
.090 Layoff Conferences
.100 Reemployment Rights
.110 Questions

.010 Introduction

This plan provides general information, guidelines, and procedures to be following in the event of a layoff of a permanent University Support Staff (USS) employee or employees at Kansas State University.  The existence of this plan does not signify a layoff is predicted.  A specific layoff notice will be issued in the event a layoff is announced.  A layoff action should be considered only after all other options have been exhausted. 

.020 Definition of a Layoff

A layoff is a reduction in work force usually necessitated by a shortage of work or funds, reinstatement of an employee from leave, the abolition of a position or unit, or other material change in duties or reorganization. A layoff can be designated university-wide, by organizational unit, geographic area, by full-time or less than full-time positions, or by a combination of any of the above as determined by the Vice President, Division of Human Capital Services (VPHCS). Layoffs result in permanent loss of the positions held by laid off employees.

.030 Layoff Notification to Division of Human Capital Services

An organizational unit facing layoff issues should immediately contact the VPHCS, followed by a letter outlining the employee or employees to be laid off, the reason for the layoff, and the date requested for the layoff.

.040 Organizational Units

Layoffs can be designated by organizational unit. Major organizational areas are identified below.

  1. Office of the President
  2. Office of the Provost
  3. Office of the Vice President for Administration and Finance
  4. Office of the Vice President for Student Life
  5. Office of the Vice President for Communications and Marketing
  6. Office of the Chief Diversity Officer
  7. Office of the Vice President for Human Capital Services
  8. Kansas State Polytechnic
  9. Kansas State Olathe
  10. Global Campus
  11. Libraries
  12. Graduate School
  13. College of Arts and Sciences
  14. College of Business Administration
  15. College of Education
  16. College of Architecture, Planning and Design
  17. College of Engineering
  18. College of Human Ecology
  19. College of Veterinary Medicine
  20. College of Agriculture (includes Agriculture Experiment Station and Cooperative Extension Service)

.050 Geographic Areas

Layoffs can be designated statewide or by county. Kansas State University has offices and branches in all 105 counties in Kansas where layoffs could occur.

.060 Bumping Rights - Options for Employees

The right of one employee to "bump" another employee from a job is dependent upon several factors, starting with a layoff score as described in the following section titled "Layoff Scores." Additional criteria also apply.

Bumping will occur within the layoff group identified in the layoff notice or university wide if no group is identified. A permanent employee, or an employee considered permanent only for layoff purposes (such as an employee recently promoted to a new position and classification but who holds permanent status in another classification) who is affected by a layoff may bump into another position under certain conditions, including that the employee is considered to be a sound match of employee abilities to essential job functions. USS limited term employees do not have bumping rights.

For an employee to be bumped, the employee must: 1) have a lower layoff score than the employee exercising the bumping right; 2) not be scheduled for layoff, and 3) have the lowest layoff score for anyone in that class not scheduled for layoff.

Class series: A class series is two or more job classifications having similar job content but different levels of skills, responsibility, difficulty and qualifications.

Bumping is exercised as follows:

  1. The employee may bump into a lower classification in a class series OR 
  2. The employee may bump into a lower classification in which the employee previously had permanent status OR 
  3. The employee may bump into a position anywhere in the university filled by a probationary employee if:
    a) the permanent employee scheduled to be laid off is interested in the position;
    b) the permanent employee scheduled to be laid off meets the required competencies and minimum qualifications of the position and had prior permanent status in the position; and
    c) when the layoff is limited to full-time or less than full-time employees, permanent employees may bump into positions filled by probationary employees having the same full-time or less than full-time status.

New hires and rehires on probationary appointments will not be granted permanent status on or after the date the VPHCS has issued a layoff notice. However, any new hire or rehire on probation in a position for which no employee subject to layoff meets the required selection criteria may be given permanent status. New hires and rehires on probation shall have their probationary period extended until it is certain that no permanent employee whose position is to be vacated by layoff or who otherwise would be laid off through the exercise of bumping rights is claiming the probationary position.

.070 Layoff Scores

Layoff scores are used to determine the order in which employees are laid off. The employee with the lowest layoff score in the particular category identified in the layoff notice will be the first person to be laid off. Layoff scores will be calculated for every employee potentially affected by the layoff based on the class, classes or class series identified in the Layoff Notice.

Layoff scores are calculated using the number of years' service multiplied by a point value derived from averaging the five most recent employee evaluations. An employee evaluation rating of Meets Expectation or higher will be worth 2 points and a rating of less than Meets Expectations will be worth 0 points. Where no evaluations were given, the employee evaluation rating will be considered as Meets Expectations. Special evaluations given for a rating period ending within 90 days of a layoff notice will not be considered. The VPHCS will designate the cutoff date for performance evaluations.

Every employee for whom a layoff score has been calculated will have the right to review the manner in which the score was obtained.

.080 Layoff Notice to Employee

Written notice will be provided to each employee in a position identified for layoff, to each employee who might be affected by the layoff and to each employee who may be laid off through the exercise of bumping rights. This notice will be given at least 45 days before the effective date of the proposed layoff. The letter will include the intent to layoff, the proposed effective date, the reason for the layoff, the employee's layoff score and right to review and general rights for reemployment. The letter will be hand delivered or delivered by certified mail-restricted delivery.

.090 Layoff Conferences

A representative of the Division of Human Capital Services will schedule and conduct individual conferences for each employee affected by a layoff. These conferences will begin as soon as possible after employees have received the notice of layoff. Conferences will be scheduled for employees starting with those with the highest layoff scores. Each employee will be informed of the options available, including bumping rights, transfer, placement assistance, and demotions.

.100 Reemployment Rights

Each employee who is laid off, demoted or transferred in lieu of layoff, will be placed in a reemployment pool unless the employee requests in writing not to be placed in the pool. Each employee in the reemployment pool shall be eligible to apply for any vacancy to be filled, including an internal vacancy, until the employee is re-employed or for three years from the date of the layoff, whichever occurs first. Persons in the reemployment pool are guaranteed an interview for positions for which they apply and meet the minimum qualifications.

.110 Questions

Questions should be directed to the Division of Human Capital Services, (785) 532-6277.