UC Santa Cruz Employee Redeployment Program for AY 2020-2021

November 25, 2020 - Important Updates:

Campus Leadership has announced changes to our Campus Employee Redeployment Program. Below is a description of the changes and links to relevant documents, forms and processes.

Purpose and Scope

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic and related impacts, UC Santa Cruz developed a program to provide employees whose work has been reduced due to COVID-19, temporary work assignments to minimize the impact on current employees. Departments shall work to identify opportunities to utilize current career and contract employees, on a full or part-time basis, with departments who have temporary work assignments. This program will be administered by Staff Human Resources (SHR) and has been established to run through June 30, 2021.

Eligibility

  • Departments will identify employees whose work effort is being reduced due to COVID-19 reasons. Impacted employees will be reviewed for skills, knowledge, and abilities for placement into a temporary reassignment(s).
  • Contract, Career and Partial-Year career employees are eligible for the program.
  • Employees remain in their current position and may be temporarily assigned alternate duties.

We are pleased to share that we have made important changes to our campus redeployment plan to better support employees, supervisors and managers by focusing first on efforts to identify and offer opportunities for temporary reassignment. Crucially, the process is now no longer initiated through a lay-off action. Instead, employees will be offered two (2) opportunities for reassignment before a temporary lay-off due to COVID-19 work reductions is enacted. Above all, the campus is committed to preventing COVID-19 related layoffs through June 30, 2021, and the changes to the redeployment program reflect this ongoing commitment.

Summary of Updates

The original redeployment program began with the issuance of an official temporary layoff notice after which the employee could opt in to the redeployment program to be matched with another role based on their skill sets. The new approach defers issuance of any layoff notice and eliminates the need for the employee to opt in.

The revised redeployment program keeps employees in their current role and/or classification until they are assigned alternate temporary duties through the redeployment program. When an employee’s workload is reduced by impacts of COVID-19, supervisors and managers will work within their unit or with managers in other units and SHR to temporarily reassign those employees instead of issuing them a layoff notice. Reassignment may occur within a department or division, or, if internal reassignment is not possible, employees will be matched as part of the cross-campus redeployment program. Employees will express their job interest and skill sets as part of a matching and reassignment process.

Temporary Lay-Offs and Redeployments that have already occurred

Those who have already received temporary lay-offs due to COVID-19 work reductions and are now in their notice period will have their notices reversed and will be immediately subject to the revised program and a temporary reassignment.

Those who are already in a COVID-related four month temporary layoff period will be contacted by SHR or their supervisor and immediately become eligible for reassignment. These staff will be prioritized for reassignment. Again, those who have been laid off for reasons NOT RELATED TO COVID-19 are not eligible for the revised redeployment program.

Those who have already been redeployed as a result of the original program will remain in their reassigned roles.

Definitions and Details

The definition of a COVID-related action means that the reason for the reduction of work or funding is at least 50% or more based on COVID-related reasons. Organizational changes or lack of funding that are unrelated to COVID reasons may still result in a layoff action. Those employees are not eligible for the redeployment program.

In the revised redeployment program, the temporary reassignment is not a formal job offer. Reassigned staff stay in their current jobs. They may or may not be entitled to a stipend as a result of their new assignment. If the new role is higher level work they will be eligible for a stipend. Similar or lower classification work will earn the same pay rate as the employee currently receives. The treatment of represented and non-represented staff are the same in this regard.

One important detail about the revised program pertains to staff who decline their reassignment. Any staff member who declines two (2) reassignments will be temporarily laid off.

Supporting our Employees

There are many nuances and details to this revised program, but working together we can support our employees and the mission of the university. Our intention is to keep as many staff employed and engaged as is possible during this challenging time. In this spirit, SHR is managing the redeployment program and implementing these new revisions. Given the priority of this revision we would like to advise our campus partners that regular SHR service levels are subject to delays and/or interruptions.

Please direct any questions to Jen Schiffner ( jschiffn@ucsc.edu) or Steve Stein ( ststein@ucsc.edu).

  1. Supervisor or manager identifies employees whose work has been reduced due to COVID-19 reasons.
  2. Following consultation with their Employee Relations (ER) Analyst, the supervisor or manager submits a Supervisor Reassignment Request webform to request temporary work assignment options either within or outside their unit.
  3. If the supervisor does not identify alternative work for their employee:
    • Following notification to the employee of the need for reassignment due to COVID related reasons, the supervisor informs employees they must submit an Employee Reassignment Request webform (that includes an “opt” out option). (If the EE chooses to opt out, their Temporary Layoff Notice will reference this)
    • Talent Acquisition (TA) begins skills matching effort using the Campus Workload and Project Needs worksheet, which lists work available for redeployment across the campus, and will work directly with the employee(s) to identify a reassignment opportunity.
  4. The home department can recall a redeployed employee with three (3) days notice to SHR.
  5. The home department must notify the host department, and their ER Analyst to confirm the recall, as soon as known, with no less than three (3) days notice.
  6. As soon as the end of the reassignment work is known. The host department or the home department must notify the home/host department and their ER Analyst to confirm the end of the reassignment, whether that is the originally scheduled end date, or not, as soon as known, no later than the last day of reassignment.
  7. When an increase in service levels justifies a recall back to the home department, the home department can recall the employee back into the original career position with at least three (3) business days’ notice to the ER Analyst. ER will then notify the host department and determine whether a need for the work continues to exist. If so, ER will return the position back to the interest list.
  8. Home departments continue to be responsible for completing annual performance evaluations, and should consult with the host department supervisor for input, especially when the temporary assignment is for an extended period of time and/or at a high percentage of time. The home department should partner with and fully consider the host department supervisor's input to incorporate into the evaluation and overall rating. Ultimately, the home department supervisor completes the evaluation and selects an appropriate overall performance rating.
  9. The home department continues to pay the employee based on their pre-reassignment FTE
    • A reconciliation and Transfer of Expense (TOE) will need done at the end of the temporary reassignment.
  1. Talent Acquisition (TA) will review the individual’s redeployment assignment interest form and conduct an initial assessment of their qualifications against the job requirements of the temporary position.
  2. Qualified employees will be matched to reassignment opportunities based on seniority by hire date at UC Santa Cruz, and skills knowledge and abilities.
  3. When a match is identified, TA communicates with the host department to verify their agreement with the skills match.
  4. When a match is confirmed, TA reaches out to Compensation to determine if a stipend is applicable and the amount (unless there is no change in classification).
  5. TA informs the employee via email of the details and impacts of the match, and confirms their acceptance of the alternative work assignment, including physical requirements checklist and background check, if needed.
  6. TA informs the home supervisor, host supervisor, ER Analyst, Operations and Compensation of acceptance via email, and notates if Compensation previously determined that a stipend applies.
  7. As soon as the end of the reassignment work is known, either due to the work being completed, or, following consultation with their ER Analyst, due to underperformance, the host department must notify the home department and their ER Analyst to confirm the end of the reassignment, whether that is the originally scheduled end date, or not, as soon as known, no later than the last day of reassignment.
  8. ER Analyst will notify the employee, the home department, the host department, Operations, TA, and Compensation that a temporary assignment is ending and specify the end date.
  9. As soon as the end of the reassignment work is known, the employee must submit a new Employee Reassignment Request Form. Priority for reassignment shall be based on the new timestamp.
  10. If the ended temporary assignment was associated with a stipend, Compensation will end that stipend.
  11. If the assignment was ended before the work was completed, the host department should confirm their desire to have a new employee matched to the reassignment.
  12. If the assignment was ended prematurely due to a poor skills match related to an insufficient description of the work, the host department should work with Compensation to update their request.
  13. If Compensation makes changes to the job description as a result of consultation with the host department, Compensation should communicate these changes to Talent Acquisition.
  14. The host department will manage the employee’s performance while on temporary reassignment and consult with their ER Analyst, as necessary, and the home department, as appropriate when there are performance issues. The ER Analyst is to be consulted about appropriate action.
  15. The host/home departments coordinate at the end of the reassignment to process a Transfer of Expense (TOE).
  1. If the employee is interested in being temporarily redeployed or to “opt out” of the program, they must complete the Employee Reassignment Request form and submit.
  2. Temporary layoffs or reductions in time will only be issued if an employee opts out of the temporary reassignment program, declines two matches, or fails to respond to TA within three (3) business days regarding a match. As soon as these conditions are known, the ER Analyst will be notified, and they will consult with the manager/supervisor to finalize the specifics of that action.
  3. Employees will retain their seniority in their home department, service credit and benefits while participating in the program.
  4. Employee continues to report hours worked with their “home” department.
  5. If the employee decides to end their temporary reassignment before the work is completed, they must notify the home department, the host department, and their ER Analyst with no less than three days notice.
  6. If the employee chooses to end their temporary reassignment early, this counts as declining the assignment.
  7. As soon as the end of the reassignment work is known, the employee must submit a new Employee Reassignment Request Form. Priority for reassignment shall be based on the new timestamp.
  1. Who is eligible for participation in the redeployment program?
    1. Employees whose supervisor or manager has identified that the employee’s work has been reduced due to COVID-19 impacts.
  2. At what point do we learn the salary level of a prospective candidate?
    1. When the Talent Team has identified a match, the Host department will be notified of the employee’s salary.
  3. Who makes the determination if a stipend is warranted for a redeployed employee?
    1. The host department’s compensation analyst will make the determination whether a stipend is warranted, and any stipend will be paid by the host unit.
  4. If SHR / home department / host department / employee are all in agreement on redeployment, generally how long before the employee can begin work?
    1. The prospective candidate can start work as soon as possible once all qualifying pre-employment actions are completed, such as a background check, if applicable.
  5. Is there a trial period for the host department to determine if the candidate’s skills truly match the project/duties, or not?
    1. No. There is no trial period. The host department can end the redeployment assignment early with three (3) business days notice. The host unit should notify their Employee Relations Analyst if the unit wishes to end a redeployment early.
  6. What is the process/timeline of a host department ending redeployment of an employee earlier than expected, such as the project ended or the employee does not have the skills necessary to complete the job? Is there any further obligation the host department has with the redeployed employee and/or associated payroll?
    1. If the host department needs to end the reassignment early, the host department must notify the home department and the host department’s Employee Relations Analyst to confirm the end of the reassignment with three (3) business days notice.
  7. I see on Staff Human Resources’ website, the home department can recall a redeployed employee with three days' notice to Staff Human Resources. Is this true?
    1. Yes, SHR requests three (3) business days for the home unit to recall a redeployed employee.
  8. Can a redeployed employee end the assignment unilaterally, or must the employee work the full assignment period?
    1. An employee ending the assignment prematurely would be the same as declining an offer. The employee would return to the home unit and would have one additional opportunity for redeployment before being issued a temporary layoff or temporary reduction in time notice.
  9. Is there anything else a host department should be aware of in the initial stages of considering a candidate?
    1. Please note that the home supervisor will be approving hours worked and completing performance appraisals. There will be some regular communication between the home and host supervisors while the reassignment is in place.