The University of Nebraska system has extended the deadline for a program that allows employees to voluntarily reduce work hours and pay, but maintain full-time benefits coverage. Announced in June, the program is intended to reduce labor costs and address budgetary impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Through the program, approximately 4,000 full-time managerial/professional and office/service employees will have a one-time option to voluntarily reduce work hours and pay by a maximum of 25 percent (shifting to .75 full-time employment). Employees who participate will continue to remain eligible for full-time insurance benefits. Salary, vacation, sick leave and retirement contributions will be adjusted to mirror the reduced work schedule.
The program is available to most full-time university employees, with exceptions to those covered by a collective bargaining agreement and those who are working on a visa or green card application. Employees hired after June 1, 2020, are also ineligible.
Eligible employees willing to participate must notify an immediate supervisor to enroll. A previously announced Sept. 1 deadline to participate has been removed. At this time, the program remains open and there is no deadline to enroll.
The reduction in hours will start after the schedule has been approved and agreed on in writing by the employee, employee’s supervisor and chief administrative officer of the work unit, and when human resources is informed. The length of the reduced work schedule will be determined by an immediate supervisor. It will become permanent if the employee remains on a reduced schedule for three years or if the university elects to make the change permanent.
Insurance benefits that will not remain the same under a reduced FTE include long-term disability premiums and coverage based on annual salary. For more information regarding how a reduced work schedule may impact participation in other benefit programs, contact Human Resources.