Workforce Reduction Policy
The purpose of this policy is to provide for an orderly and equitable transition in staffing when a work force reduction is necessary. Conditions such as a decrease in student enrollments or patient census, department restructuring for economic or programmatic reason's or work schedule changes may require reductions in staffing.
It is Loyola's goal to balance the needs of the University and minimize any disruption of health care and/or educational services, while respecting the dignity of employees affected.
In planning and implementing a workforce reduction, the following objectives are set forth as guides to management:
- To protect the standards and quality of patient care.
- To provide education and supportive services for students in the Jesuit tradition of excellence.
- To support the University's commitment to equal employment opportunity.
- To provide appropriate notice, alternative employment opportunities where possible, and/or University approved services to employees affected by the work force reduction.
This policy applies to work force reductions affecting full and regular part-time positions within a job classification or due to job elimination within any department. Prior to implementing a reduction in force, the University may consider other alternatives such as reducing personnel by attrition, hiring freezes, changing employee work schedules or reducing work hours, voluntary time-off or early retirement options.
In analyzing the job classifications to be affected in any work force reduction, department management must work in direct consultation with and obtain the approval of the campus Human Resource Department prior to announcing or finalizing any specific staffing or personnel reductions.
The following criteria are to be used by each department in deciding specific positions and/or individual reductions after vacant and temporary positions are eliminated.
- Performance factors that include job knowledge and the skill and ability of position incumbents (as documented in their most recent performance evaluations) necessary to do the work which remains to be accomplished; and the employee's work history in terms of documented disciplinary actions or performance deficiencies (as contained in the Human Resources personnel file).
- University length of service (defined as the period of continuous full or regular part-time employment based on the employee's most recent date of hire) is used as the determining factor when performance factors are comparable among staff to be reduced.
- Management guidelines for work force reductions will be adapted and issued to cover any University specific situation as needed. Each department must provide written support in the application of the criteria when selecting among employees in the same job classification and performance rating level.
Notice and/or Severance Schedule
The University will provide a minimum of two (2) weeks notice in advance of any work force reduction or equivalent severance pay when it is not possible to provide advance notice or when notice may be disruptive to patient care or student services.
Non-exempt Classified Positions
A notice period or severance pay instead of notice will be provided by the University for non- exempt job classification incumbents in accordance with the following schedule:
Completed Full Years of Service
Weeks of Notice or Severance Pay
Less than 1 year
1 year but less than 5
5 years but less than 10
10 years but less than 15
15 years and over
Note: Severance pay will be pro-rated for regular part-time staff according to the current approved FTE designation.
Exempt Classified Positions
Affected employees occupying exempt positions will be eligible for one week of pay per full year of completed service (as of their last day of work) with a minimum of four (4) weeks of base salary and a maximum of twenty-six (26) weeks of pay.
Approved severance pay includes pay for the notice period. For example, each week of notice provided shall cancel one week of severance pay. The above notice and/or severance schedule is separate and in addition to any earned salary, and unused vacation time.
- Medical and Dental Coverage
Employees affected by the work force reduction who are enrolled and covered in a University group medical and/or dental plan may extend their coverage under the University's group plans for a period of up to six (6) months, or until employed elsewhere and eligible for coverage (whichever occurs sooner). This period of extended coverage will be provided at the regular employee rate of contribution in effect at the time (as adjusted each January). Coverage includes the employee and dependents as applicable.
After the six month period, affected individuals may continue coverage under the provisions of COBRA. Currently, COBRA allows a period of up to 18 months, (6 months at employee rate + remaining 12 months at the COBRA rate of 102% of the total premium), in effect at that time for employee (and as applicable dependent) coverage. Individuals enrolled in a Loyola medical plan covered by Aetna may convert to the direct pay basis with Aetna without evidence of insurability (thereby assuring coverage for any pre-existing condition).
- Life and Long Term Disability
Insurance coverage ceases as of the last day of work. The life insurance plan my be converted during a 30 day grace period to a direct pay plan by contacting the carrier. The long term disability plan is not convertible.
- Tuition Remission Benefit
Employees and/or their eligible dependents enrolled and utilizing the tuition benefit at Loyola University Chicago may complete the academic year under the provisions of the tuition remission policy in place at the time of the work force reduction. May be considered taxable income to the employee.
- Taxable Graduate Tuition Benefit
As a benefit to the employee, the University will add a payment (“gross up”) to cover payroll taxes the employee owes on that portion of the graduate tuition benefit in excess of $5,250 in a calendar year and which had not been previously subject to payroll tax. The gross up calculation will take into consideration the tuition benefit from January 1, 2020 thru the completion of the academic semester/quarter in which the employee is enrolled as of their last date of employment, less the tuition benefit previously taxed.
- For clarity, the former employee may continue to utilize the tuition benefit after their last date of employment and through the end of the academic year. However, the gross up payment will take into consideration the tuition benefit thru the end of the academic semester / quarter in which the employee is enrolled as of their last date of employment. Income or other taxes related to tuition benefit for academic semesters / quarters beginning after the employee’s last date of employment are the responsibility of the former employee.
- Taxable Graduate Tuition Benefit
- Vacation Time
Earned vacation time will be paid in accordance with Human Resource policy, and are considered separate and in addition to severance pay.
Transfer and Re-employment Eligibility
- Transfer Eligibility
Employees affected by a work force reduction (due to reduction in the job classification or job elimination) have no displacement rights, but may apply for any open positions for which they are qualified as posted for any campus of the University.
- Re-employment Eligibility
Employees affected by a work force reduction will remain eligible for re-employment for a period equivalent to their length of service up to a maximum of one year from their last day of work. Upon rehire the employee will be reinstated to their most recent date of employment (prior to the reduction). Individuals affected by the reduction will be considered for future vacancies based on the same criteria used in the reduction. There is no guarantee, however, of being recalled to a former position or rehired to any other position with the University.
Policy Priority and Interpretation
This policy supersedes the Reduction in Work force Policy dated February 1985 and 1993 and, to the extend other Human Resource policies are not in concert with this revision, this work force reduction policy will control.
The University will plan and implement work force reduction guidelines for each situation, consistent with its applicable Human Resources policies and procedures. The department manager is responsible for communicating the department's rationale or reasons for the selection of each employee.
All differences of opinion, interpretations and applications of this policy and its supporting guidelines are reserved for final determination by the Human Resources department. A Human Resources Review Committee consisting of representatives from Human Resources, Employee Relations, and the University's Equal Employment/Affirmative Action Office will review department recommendations and respond to employee requests or stated concerns.