Voluntary FTE Reduction Program

This program allows the University of Nebraska to grant most of its regular, full-time Office/Service and Managerial/Professional employees a one-time option to voluntarily reduce their work hours and corresponding pay to no lower than a 0.75 full-time equivalent (FTE). Regular full-time Office/Service and Managerial/Professional employees who are working for the University pursuant to a visa or a green card application are not eligible to participate in this program. This program also is not available to any regular, full-time Office/Service or Managerial/Professional employee hired on or after June 1, 2020.

Eligible employees who wish to participate in the program must notify their immediate supervisor of their willingness to reduce their work hours and FTE by completing the attached form. A reduction in hours will become effective only after the revised work schedule has been approved and agreed to in writing by the employee, the employee’s supervisor, and the chief administrative officer of the unit to which the employee is assigned and human resources has been informed of the reduced schedule. Once the employee’s work schedule and FTE are reduced, the employee must remain at that FTE for a period to be determined by the supervisor. The reduced work schedule and FTE will become permanent if the employee remains on that schedule for a period of three (3) years or if the University, within its discretion, elects to make the reduced work schedule permanent prior to that time.

While the employee is on the reduced work schedule, the employee will remain eligible for insurance benefits under the same terms as if the employee was a full-time employee, except for Long Term Disability premiums and coverage which is based on annual salary. The employee’s salary, holiday vacation and sick leave benefits, and retirement contributions, however, will be adjusted to correspond with the reduced FTE. Questions regarding how a reduced work schedule may impact an employee’s participation in other benefit programs should be directed to the campus Benefits Office.

Voluntary FTE Reduction Form

See also: UNCA Office/Service and Managerial/Professional Voluntary FTE Reduction Program 

Voluntary FTE Reduction Schedule Examples

The following provides example schedules that may be approved as part of the Voluntary FTE Reduction program for Office/Service and Managerial/Professional employees.

Reduced Hours and Pay Each Week

Examples

  • Reduce hours each day
    Reduce hours worked from 8 to 6 hours per day. Change from 40 to 30 hours per week, and 1.00 FTE to 0.75 FTE.
  • Reduce hours one day each week
    Reduce hours worked from 8 to 0 on Friday. Change from 40 to 32 hours per week, and 1.00 FTE to 0.80 FTE.
  • Reduce hours several days each week
    Reduce hours worked from 8 to 4 on Tuesday and Thursday. Change from 40 to 32 hours per week, and 1.00 FTE to 0.80 FTE.
  • Reduce hours as needed during the work week, while committing to the same total hours each week
    Reduce hours worked from 40 to 32, with a day off each week based on a schedule as approved by a supervisor in advance. Change from 40 to 32 hours per week, and 1.00 FTE to 0.80 FTE.

Considerations:

  • This is meant to be regular weekly schedule, therefore hourly paid employees may reduce their schedule on an as-needed basis, thereby changing scheduled hours each week. Using an average schedule over time is not allowed, as the schedule must remain at the new FTE each week.
  • If the following scenarios are requested, please speak with Human Resources prior to approval.
    ⚬ allowing employees to be off work for one week per month
    ⚬ allowing employees to take one or two days off per month
  • Monthly paid salary exempt employees may not be approved to reduce FTE (hours worked) each week below the Fair Labor Standard Act (FLSA) weekly salary requirement (currently $684 per week) as it would change exemption status and require tracking hours worked.

Benefits Impact:

While the employee is on the reduced work schedule, the employee will remain eligible for insurance benefits under the same terms as if the employee was a full-time employee, except for Long Term Disability premiums and coverage which is based on annual salary. The employee's salary, holiday vacation and sick leave benefits, and retirement contributions, however, will be adjusted to correspond with the reduced FTE.

Time off For Consecutive Months – Annual Reduction in Hours and Pay

For this special program, there is no option to take consecutive/summer months off and be paid all year long.

Examples

  • 3 months off (Mid May – Mid August, or June - August)
    Bi-weekly Hourly Paid: Change from working 12 months per year, 40 hours per week for 52 weeks per year, to 9 months, 40 hours per week, 40 weeks per year. 2080 hours per year to 1600, and 1.00 FTE to 0.77 FTE. Employees will not be paid during the time off. Employees will work 40 hours per week during working months and be paid for hours worked.
    Monthly Paid: Change from working 12 months per year, 40 hours per week to 9 months per year, reducing FTE from 1.0 to 0.75. Employees will not be paid during the time off. Employees will work 40 hours per week and be paid during working months at 1.0 FTE.
  • 2 months off (Mid June – Mid August, or June – July, or July – August)
    Bi-weekly Hourly Paid: Change from working 12 months per year, 40 hours per week for 52 weeks per year, to 10 months, 40 hours per week, 44 weeks per year. 2080 hours per year to 1760, and 1.00 FTE to 0.85 FTE. Employees will not be paid during the time off. Employees will work 40 hours per week during working months and be paid for hours worked.
    Monthly Paid: Change from working 12 months per year, 40 hours per week to 10 months per year, reducing FTE from 1.0 to 0.83. Employees will not be paid during the time off. Employees will work 40 hours per week and be paid during working months at 1.0 FTE.
  • 1 month off (June, or July, or August, or some other consecutive one month timeframe
    Bi-weekly Hourly Paid: Change from working 12 months per year, 40 hours per week for 52 weeks per year, to 11 months, 40 hours per week, 48 weeks per year. 2080 hours per year to 1920, and 1.00 FTE to 0.92 FTE. Employees will not be paid during the time off. Employees will work 40 hours per week during working months and be paid for hours worked
    Monthly Paid: Change from working 12 months per year, 40 hours per week to 11 months per year, reducing FTE from 1.0 to 0.92. Employees will not be paid during the time off. Employees will work 40 hours per week and be paid during working months at 1.0 FTE.

Considerations:

  • Bi-weekly employee reduction in FTE for consecutive months should coincide with a pay week begin/end, in order to easily administer benefits and payroll processes.
  • Because of the start date of this program being after mid-May for this summer 2020, the approved 2020 schedule may be different than the approved future schedule. For example, an employee may be off July 1 – Mid August in 2020 and then off Mid May – Mid August for 2021 and thereafter.
  • The FTE calculations in these examples are approximate and rounded. Actual FTE will be calcucated once a schedule is agreed upon.

Benefits Impact:

Employees who are in an unpaid status will write a check to UNL for their portion of the employee contributions each month while not working. The employee contribution amount will be the same terms as if the employee was a full-time, except for Long Term Disability premiums and coverage which is based on annual salary Under this special program, there is no option to deduct benefits throughout the year or by other deduction methods as may be available in other work schedule arrangements. If payment is not received by the benefits office, benefits will be cancelled.

Voluntary FTE Reduction Program Example Chart

Scenario

Example

Current FTE

New FTE

Benefits Impact

Reduce hours each day

Reduce hours worked from 8 to 6 hours per day

40 hours/wk = 1.0 FTE

30 hours/wk = 0.75 FTE

Deductions = Same terms as before reduction in FTE, except for long-term disability insurance.

Paid leave and retirement reduced to new FTE.

Reduce hours one day each week

Reduce hours worked from 8 to 0 on Friday

40 hours/wk = 1.0 FTE

32 hour/wk = 0.80 FTE



Reduce hours several days each week

Reduce hours worked from 8 to 4 on Tuesday and Thursday. 

40 hours/wk = 1.0 FTE

32 hours/wk = 0.80 FTE



Reduce hours as needed during the work week, same total hours each week

Reduce hours worked from 40 to 32, with a day off each week based on a schedule as approved by a supervisor in advance

40 hours/wk = 1.0 FTE

32 hours/wk = 0.80 FTE



HOURLY PAID

Consecutive 3 months off

Mid May – Mid August, or June - August

Change from working 40 hours per week for 52 weeks per year, to 40 hours per week during non-summer months.

52 weeks/yr * 40 hours = 2080 hours = 1.0 FTE

40 weeks/year * 40 hours = 1600 hours = .77 FTE

Deductions = Same terms as before reduction in FTE, except for long-term disability insurance during paid months. 

Employee writes a check to NU when not working during unpaid time off.

Paid leave and retirement reduced to new FT.  Leave will not accrue during unpaid time off.

MONTHLY PAID

Consecutive 3 months off

Mid May – Mid August, or June - August)

Change from working 40 hours per week for 12 months per year to 9 months per year.

12 months

1.0 FTE

9 months

0.75 FTE






HOURLY PAID

Consecutive 2 months off

Mid June – Mid August, June – July, or July – August

Change from working 40 hours per week for 52 weeks per year, to 44 hours per week during non-summer months.

52 weeks* 40 hours = 2080 hours = 1.0 FTE

44 weeks * 40 hours = 1760 hours = .85 FTE






MONTHLY PAID

Consecutive 2 months off

Mid June – Mid August, June – July, or July – August

Change from working 40 hours per week for 12 months per year to 10 months per year.

12 months

1.0 FTE

10 months

0.83 FTE






HOURLY PAID

Consecutive 1 month off

June, July, August, or some other consecutive month timeframe in the summer

Change from working 40 hours per week for 52 weeks per year, to 48 hours per week during non-summer months.

52 weeks * 40 hours = 2080 hours = 1.0 FTE

48 weeks * 40 hours = 1920 hours = .92 FTE






MONTHLY PAID

Consecutive 1 month off

June, July, August, or some other consecutive month timeframe in the summer

Change from working 40 hours per week for 12 months per year to 11 months per year.

12 months

1.0 FTE

11 months

0.92 FTE






History

Effective: June 5, 2020 - Approved by the University of Nebraska President
Last Revised: September 1, 2020

Responsible University Administrators: Vice President for Business and Finance
Responsible University Office: Human Resources

Contact: Associate VP for Human Resources, humanresources@nebraska.edu