Reduction in Force Policy
Reviewed August 2013 - Revised Oct. 4, 2010 - Printable version



ABX Air strives to provide its employees with secure and stable employment. Staffing levels are carefully set to meet operational needs. However, ABX Air is in a very competitive industry and must be able to adapt to changing business conditions. When changes in economic, industry, or operating conditions require a reorganization or reduction in the workforce, executive management will work with Human Resources management to identify the positions impacted and the employees affected. Careful planning, kept in strict confidence, will be given to all aspects of any reduction in force before it is implemented. A reduction in force may affect the entire company or individual departments.

Underlying Principles

Before a reduction in force is implemented, management will consider all other feasible options available to address changing business needs before directing a reduction in force. These options may include voluntary reductions, hour reductions, worksharing, or temporary leaves. However, should a reduction in force be necessary, it will be accomplished through reassignments, layoffs, and/or terminations. This policy will facilitate a reduction in force with the least disruption to the operation and customer service, and with the utmost consideration for employees.

This policy covers all non-union, hourly, non-exempt and most exempt employees.

ABX Air complies with all state or federal laws that govern workforce reductions or layoffs.


Management will personally notify each employee affected by a reduction in force. The employee also will receive written notice to include the following information:

bulletreason for the reduction in force,
bulletnotice of the last day to be worked,
bulletbenefit coverage expiration,
bulletreassignment eligibility if applicable, and
bulletrecall eligibility if applicable.

Affected employees will be given a minimum of 14 calendar days of notice or two weeks of regular pay in lieu of notice.

Selection Criteria

In most cases, reductions in force are determined within a department considering the positions, skills, and knowledge needed to support the continuing business operations. The company will generally be guided by the following criteria in determining which employees will be affected by a reduction in force or layoff.

bulletEmployees with documented performance issues will be terminated first. For purposes of this policy, it would apply to those whose employment record reflects a pattern of marginal or unsatisfactory performance, including multiple or repeated counseling, or written discipline. Conversely, this would not apply to employees with overall good employment records who may have received discipline for a one-time event.
bulletHourly employee reductions will follow these guidelines:
  1. The layoff will occur in the order of employees with the least company seniority within the job classification being affected.
  2. Affected employees are able to exercise their company seniority to displace the least senior employee within their job classification. Within 5 days, employees must notify management of their intent to exercise company seniority to displace a less senior employee. The following criteria also apply:
bulletThe employee must still meet the qualifications of the job and may be required to successfully complete skill assessments that are normally required.
bulletThe employee cannot displace a less senior employee when it would result in a promotion.
bulletThe employee must be able to relocate and/or work the scheduled shifts and days off required.
bulletCompany seniority cannot be exercised to displace leads.
bulletThe employee will be paid at the step in scale that corresponds most closely with the step in scale of their company seniority. Step increases will be determined by established pay step intervals (e.g. 6 or 12 months).
bulletNonexempt employees, exempt professionals, supervisors and managers will be selected on the basis of:
  1. Knowledge, skills, and experience necessary for the continued operation of the organization, and
  2. Documented performance and overall employment record.
  3. Company seniority shall be a consideration; however, the selection criteria above will be the primary considerations in determining those affected by a reduction in force.
bulletDirectors and Executives will be retained at the sole discretion of the President, CEO, and the Board of Directors.


A reasonable good-faith effort will be made to internally reassign productive, capable, experienced, well-performing employees whose position has been eliminated in a reduction in force. If reassignment is feasible, management will consider the following options in reassigning affected employees to other positions. In all cases, employees must meet the minimum qualifications of the positions to which they are reassigned and be able to relocate and/or work the available shifts/days off.

bulletReassignment to formerly held positions within their department for which they remain qualified and willing to transfer.
bulletIf there are less senior employees in positions that are unaffected by a reduction, management may elect to replace those employees with employees whose positions are being eliminated.
bulletReassignment to vacant positions in or outside their department.
bulletCompany seniority, in particular for nonexempt employees, will be part of the consideration in reassignment of affected employees.

Layoff and Recall

A reduction in force may be a temporary or permanent reduction. If staffing needs are expected to change within a year or less, the reduction may only be needed for the short term. In that case, a layoff with recall rights may be offered as an option to affected employees.

bulletEmployees offered reassignments or layoff will be offered recall to the similar pay and position they previously held, to the extent such positions become available regardless of shifts/days off.
bulletRecall of hourly, laid-off employees will be in reverse order (most senior) of company seniority. When openings become available in the affected job classification, the employee with the most company seniority in that job classification will be offered recall first, either from a layoff or from the job classification the employee assumed through displacement. Laid-off or reassigned employees will be recalled before new employees are hired into the affected job classifications.
bulletHourly employees retain recall rights for a period of seven years from the date of layoff or reassignment.
bulletRecall notification will be mailed to the employee’s last known address by certified mail.
bulletCompany seniority will continue to accrue during a layoff for a period of seven years from date of layoff.
bulletUpon recall, vacation will begin accruing based on the employee’s company seniority date.
bulletUpon recall, the employee will return to work at the former step in pay prior to the layoff.
bulletFor pension and benefits, plan documents determine break in service rules.
bulletAn employee may turn down the recall opportunity and remain on the recall list. However, the employee will not be called again until all other employees on the recall list have been called. The employee’s name will move forward on the list as each person (in order of company seniority) is offered a position.
bulletRecall rights and employment will be considered terminated under any of the following conditions:
bulletThe laid-off employee declines a recall to his or her former position.
bulletReasonable efforts to contact and recall the employee are unsuccessful.
bulletThe employee fails to maintain recall status.
bulletThe employee does not to report to work by the established return-to-work date.
bulletThe employee has not been recalled within seven years from date of layoff.


Should the reduction be deemed a long-term or permanent event, no layoff will be offered and a termination will occur. If a waiver of claims is signed, a severance agreement may be offered. Additional assistance in preparing for job searches also may be offered to affected employees.

Employee Responsibility

bulletUnderstand that in order to remain competitive, ABX Air must respond quickly to economic, market, and operational changes.
bulletRecognize that ABX Air places a high priority on providing stable employment but cannot guarantee permanent employment to any employee.
bulletBe considerate and respect the confidentiality of employees who may be affected if a reduction occurs.
bulletLaid-off employees must keep a current address and telephone number on file with Human Resources, and annually restate in writing (between December 1-31) their desire to stay on the recall list.
bulletEmployees who are recalled are expected to report to work within 14 days of receipt of their recall notice.

Management Responsibility

bulletManage staffing levels to meet operational needs but avoid overstaffing.
bulletA reduction in force requires the involvement and authorization of executive management and Human Resources management.
bulletBe familiar with this policy and be able to effectively implement the reduction in force process. Management directly involved in a reduction will be provided additional guidance/training.
bulletBe considerate and maintain the confidentiality of employees who may be affected if a reduction occurs.
bulletDevelop a plan to cover the duties from eliminated positions that are still necessary to perform, and update job descriptions accordingly. Reassign job duties and clearly communicate changes to employees.
bulletBe prepared to communicate with employees the reasons for a reduction in force.
bulletBe familiar with resources available for employees while going through a reduction in force (e.g. Employee Assistance Program).

Appeal Process

Employees who are selected for a reduction in force may appeal the decision to an Appeals Committee for re-consideration. The Vice President of Corporate Services and Human Resources will chair this committee. Members will include one executive (from outside of the department of the employee filing the appeal), one member of management, and two non-management employees. The President will appoint the Appeals Committee at the time of the reduction in force.

All appeals must be filed within three working days of the notification. The Appeals Committee will strive to render a decision within two working days of receipt of the appeal. The decision of the Appeals Committee shall be considered final.

horizontal rule

Revision History:
Oct. 4, 2010
Feb. 20, 2008