Policies,Administrative,UW Health Administrative,Human Resources

Position Elimination/Reduction (9.53)

Position Elimination/Reduction (9.53) - Policies, Administrative, UW Health Administrative, Human Resources


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Administrative (Non-Clinical) Policy
This administrative policy applies to the operations and staff of the University of Wisconsin Hospitals and
Clinics Authority (UWHCA) as integrated effective July 1, 2015, including the legacy operations and
staff of University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics (UWHC) and University of Wisconsin Medical
Foundation (UWMF).

Policy Title: Position Elimination/Reduction
Policy Number: 9.53
Effective Date: September 1, 2017
Chapter: Human Resources
Version: Revision


To provide procedures for the elimination and/or reduction of regular, UW Health positions for
business/operational reasons.


It is UW Health’s policy to administer position eliminations and resulting employee separations in a
consistent and equitable manner, considering both business and employee needs. UW Health will strive to
provide notice and appropriate assistance to employees whose positions are eliminated. In applying this
policy, and consistent with UW Heath’s obligation to maintain a quality workforce, decisions will be
reviewed to ensure compliance with Administrative Policy 9.27-Equal Employment Opportunity and
Non-Discrimination and any applicable federal, state, and local laws.


For purposes of this policy, the term "employee" is defined as all regular, full and part-time UW Health
employees who have been employed for at least six months. This policy does not apply to physicians and
Graduate Medical Education trainees.


A. Assessment
1. Decisions regarding position eliminations and/or reductions shall be department or cost
center specific and must be approved by the operational VP. Should it be necessary to
eliminate and/or reduce the number of positions, the department director, in consultation
with an Employee Relations Consultant (ERC)/Human Resources Business Partner (HRBP)
will determine which positions and/or work units are to be impacted, the number of
positions to be eliminated, and the individuals affected.

2. When there is only one incumbent employee in the position to be eliminated in the
department or cost center, that employee shall be separated from the position. If there is
more than one incumbent in the same title to be considered for elimination in the

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department or cost center and all such positions are not being eliminated, selection of the
employee(s) to be separated will be at the discretion of the department in consultation with
an ERC/HRBP. The ERC/HRBP will review information, which may include performance
evaluation ratings, key skills, expertise, attendance records, disciplinary records, and the
employees' UW Health service dates to ensure that management's recommendations are
appropriate. Other factors considered may be business and/or operational needs or
objectives, diversity goals, and/or the need to maintain specific expertise, skills, abilities,
qualifications and work experience.

B. Employee Notification
The department director, in conjunction with an ERC, shall draft a written notification to the
affected employee(s) and will issue said notification to the employee thirty (30) calendar days
prior to the effective date of the position elimination. The written notification will also provide
the reason(s) for the elimination and the effective date. In some situations, it is in the best
interests of the employee or the department that the employee not report to work during the notice
period. This decision should be made in consultation with Employee Relations. When the
notification is issued the employee should be informed whether the notice period will be working
or non-working (or a combination). For a non-working notice period, the employee shall be
placed on a paid leave based on regular scheduled hours not to exceed thirty (30) calendar days.
Federal and State laws may require a 60-day advance notice regarding large-scale layoff or staff
reductions in certain circumstances.

C. Alternate/Comparable Positions
1. Upon receiving notice of position elimination, the affected employee may choose to
maintain employment with UW Health by applying for a vacant position for which s/he
may be qualified. Employees are eligible to be considered for other openings within UW
Health if they meet the eligibility requirements as defined in Hiring Policy 9.37.
a. An eligible applicant may be assigned a Recruitment contact to assist with questions
related to the recruitment process.
b. An applicant is responsible for applying for jobs that interest them and participating
in the UW Health recruitment process on a timely basis.

2. Employees whose positions have been eliminated may be offered a comparable position
within UW Health, if such a comparable position is available. A comparable position is
defined as:
a. One with a midpoint that is within ten (10) percent of the midpoint of the employee’s
current pay grade.
b. Position is located within a specified mileage of the employee’s current work
location as provided below:
i. Supervisor and above: a comparable position is one that is located within 60-
miles of the employee’s current work location.
ii. All other employees: a comparable position is defined as one that is located
within 30-miles of the employee’s current work location.

3. An employee who declines a comparable position will be considered to have voluntarily
resigned his/her employment without rights to severance benefits. However, a refusal to
accept a comparable position within UW Health, as defined above, will not disqualify an
employee from receiving severance benefits under this policy if the offer of a comparable
position is made as part of a mass layoff covered by the Federal Workers Adjustment and
Retraining Notification Act (WARN Act). Exceptions to this may be granted by the Vice
President, Chief Human Resources Officer.

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4. If an employee accepts a comparable position or a non-comparable position at a lower pay
grade they voluntarily applied for, the employee will keep their current pay for two years,
and then will be placed in the new pay range based on factors such as experience, current
rate of pay and equity. When an employee’s pay is being maintained because it is higher
than it would be in the new position they will only be eligible for an increase if an increase
to the rate they should be making results in a higher pay rate than the employee’s current
rate of pay. When an employee’s pay is being maintained, and they are over the maximum
of the new pay grade the employee will not be eligible for pay increases, including lump
sums, during this period. An employee who is offered a non-comparable position and
chooses to accept it, declines their right to a severance package.

D. Severance

1. Severance Eligibility
a. Any full-time or part-time employee who works an assigned .50 FTE or more within
UW Health is eligible for severance pay, when applicable.
b. Temporary and per-diem staff are not eligible. Employees who will be scheduled for a
reduced workweek, but will be retained as an employee are not eligible for severance

2. Qualifying Conditions for Severance Pay
a. Severance pay and benefits may be provided under the following conditions;
i. A permanent reduction in staff due to economic cutbacks.
ii. The permanent elimination of positions and/or classifications due to
reorganization or the total or partial closing of programs, units or
b. Severance pay and benefits are not applicable in cases of:
i. Voluntary terminations (e.g. resignation or retirement)
ii. Involuntary termination (poor performance, misconduct, violation of
policies, etc.)
iii. Temporary layoff
iv. Death or disability
v. Refusal to accept comparable position (see definitions above)

3. Severance Period
a. For purpose of this policy, years of service will be rounded to the nearest full year of
b. Severance will be paid out on the same payroll schedule as the scheduled payroll for
employees in one lump sum payment.
i. Director and above: One month of severance pay for each year of service, up
to a maximum of six months.
ii. All other employees: One week of pay at the employee’s current weekly rate
for each complete year of service, with a minimum of one week to a
maximum of twelve (12) weeks.

E. If severance benefits are offered, the amount will be based on guidelines developed by HR.
Nothing in this policy is intended to create a contractual or other right to severance benefits and
no such inference shall be made. In addition to severance benefits, the following services are also
available to employees whose positions have been eliminated, and are available for six (6)
months from the separation date:

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1. Access to the Employee Assistance Program (EAP), and their resources related to:
a. Financial planning
b. Resume preparation
c. Interviewing tips


This policy creates no rights, contractual or otherwise. Statements of policy obtained herein are not made
for the purpose of inducing any person to become or remain an employee of UW Health, and should not
be considered "promises" or as granting "property" rights. UW Health may add to, subtract from and/or
modify this policy at any time. Nothing contained in this policy impairs the right of an employee or UW
Health to terminate the employment relationship at-will.


Senior Management Sponsor: Vice President, Chief Human Resources Officer
Authors: Director, Employee Relations

Approval Committee: UW Health Administrative Policy & Procedure Committee


Elizabeth Bolt
UW Health Chief Administrative Officer