Layoff preparation

While layoff is sometimes necessary, employers should recognize both the impact of employee disappointment and shock, and the cost of addressing grievances and challenges.

Pre-layoff considerations

  • Other strategies. Evaluate whether it is appropriate to use other staffing reduction strategies to minimize the number of employees who must be laid off.
  • Layoff procedure. Review and update your layoff procedure. Address areas that impose undue restrictions on how a layoff is conducted.
  • Employment retention ratings. Calculate a rating for every employee impacted by the layoff. Include veterans preference for eligible veterans.
  • Rules and collective bargaining agreements (CBAs). Review and comply with any Civil Service Rules or CBA terms.
  • Notification requirements. Review and comply with all federal and state laws governing layoff notification.
  • Communication. Develop a comprehensive communication plan. Identify how you will communicate with managers, employees at risk of layoff, and those employees who remain behind. Determine your key themes for each audience. Communicate early and often to avoid rumors and speculation. Prepare your answers to common questions.
  • Tools and resources. Identify and develop the resources that will be available to managers and employees. This may include layoff packets with job seeking tools, designated staff for coaching and advice, and web sites with process information, answers to frequently asked questions, and other resources.
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