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Voluntary Redundancy

Taking voluntary redundancy is one option for University of Otago support staff potentially affected by the outcomes of the Support Services Review.

The following offers information about redundancy compensation, including a redundancy calculator. If staff require additional information about the voluntary redundancy process they should contact Carolyn King, Change Manager by email carolyn.king@otago.ac.nz 

Staff should be aware that there are a number of factors taken into account in determining length of service which is used to calculate the value of redundancy compensation and these are outlined below. Once length of service is determined, compensation is calculated using the tables below (as contained in employment agreements View employment agreements on the Human Resources website).

Please note entitlements to redundancy compensation is different for staff employed in the research funded category as outlined in Table 2.

Redundancy compensation

Table 1: Redundancy Compensation for staff except those employed in the research funded category.
(A severance payment will be paid according to the following formula)
Continuous Service with the University (years) Payment (weeks)
Up to 1 year 6
1 year and up to 2 8
2 years and up to 3 10
3 years and up to 4 14
4 years and up to 5 18
5 years and up to 6 22
6 years and up to 7 24
7 years and up to 8 26
8 years and up to 9 28
9 years and up to 10 30
10 years and up to 11 32
11 years and up to 12 33
12 years and up to 13 34
13 years and up to 14 35
14 years and up to 15 36
15 years and up to 16 37
16 years and up to 17 38
17 years and up to 18 39
18 years and up to 19 40
19 years and up to 20 41
20 years and up to 21 42
21 years and up to 22 43
22 years and up to 23 44
23 years or more 45

Table 2: Redundancy Compensation for staff employed in the research funded category.
(A severance payment will be paid according to the following formula)
Continuous Service with the University (years) Payment (weeks)
Up to 4 8
4 years and up to 6 12
6 years and up to 8 16
8 years and up to 10 21
10 years or more 26

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Factors considered when determining length of service

Staff should be aware that in determining length of service a number of factors are taken into account, including but not limited to the following:

  • All periods of unpaid leave are deducted when calculating length of service e.g. leave without pay, semester breaks (for semester time only staff), unpaid parental leave
  • Service of staff employed on variable hours and/or semester agreements will need to be analysed to calculate their equivalent length of service
  • Staff who hold multiple positions will need to have their service computed to equivalent full time if one or more of those positions is variable hours, semester time, and/or was subject to unpaid leave.
  • Redundancy is calculated is on base salary i.e. does not include any recruitment and retention or other allowances

Full and final redundancy calculations will be provided to staff as part of ongoing discussion regarding their expression of interest in voluntary redundancy. This would take into account any agreement reached to extend the standard two month period of notice for redundancy and redeployment enabling staff to continue to provide support to the University during the transition period.

These guidelines apply to general staff working in areas that are in scope for the SSR.

The voluntary redundancy process will comply with all employment legislation and the provisions detailed in individual and collective employment agreements.

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Redundancy calculator

The redundancy calculator provides indicative calculations only, and full and final redundancy calculations will be provided to staff as part of ongoing discussion regarding their expression of interest, particularly taking into account any agreement to work beyond the standard period of notice for redundancy and redeployment i.e. two months’ notice.

The redundancy calculator provides an approximate gross figure for redundancy compensation based on the commencement date and current salary information entered by the staff member. It does not take into account the factors noted above for determining length of service nor any other factors relating to individual staff members.

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Voluntary redundancy principles

The University is committed to managing this change/restructure with care and sensitivity to all staff and in line with our goals of being a good employer.

Written expressions of interest in voluntary redundancy will be considered by the University and approval to receive voluntary redundancy will be provided in writing.

Expressions of interest may be declined if an individual’s attributes, skills and experience are considered highly desirable in assisting implementation and ongoing support of the services to be implemented.

Extended notice (beyond the contractual two months’ notice for redundancy and redeployment) may be negotiated between individual staff and the University. This would depend upon the availability of the staff member and the University’s need for additional transitional staffing in areas suited to the individuals’ attributes, skills and experience.

Reasonable support and advice will be offered to staff who volunteer to take redundancy to support them personally and professionally as their employment comes to an end.

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Expressions of interest for voluntary redundancy

  1. Read through the information on this page about voluntary redundancy
  2. Use this redundancy compensation calculator to give you an idea of the approximate payout you are entitled to.
  3. Consult the voluntary redundancy superannuation options information on the HR website
  4. Individuals should complete the Expression of Interest in Voluntary Redundancy Form
  5. Expressions of interest will be received by the Change Manager.

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Process for Considering Expressions of Interest for Voluntary Redundancy

The University will consider all expressions of interest in a timely manner. The over-riding criteria when considering expressions of interest will be (i) that the associated savings are fully realised and sustainable, and (ii) that the departure would not negatively impact on the University’s implementation and ongoing support of services and helps to achieve estimated salary savings.

  1. Applications will be considered by the Executive Sponsor, Change Manager, PVCs, Deans, Heads of Departments and Service Division Directors and Managers (all as appropriate) with input from the relevant Divisional HR Manager/Advisor
  2. Expressions of interest will be considered taking into account:
    • the information provided by the individual seeking voluntary redundancy in their expression of interest and subsequent discussion
    • the information provided by others involved in considering the application (as above)
    • the transitional needs of the University
    • the number of expressions of interest received
    • the areas staff expressing interest currently work in
    • the impact on those areas and the entire University
  3. Final decisions regarding approval of expressions of interest in voluntary redundancy will be made by the Executive Sponsor
  4. Individuals would then be informed of the decision (in writing) including any agreement to extend the notice period (from the minimum two months’ notice period for redundancy) to provide additional support during transition.

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Outplacement and other support

Outplacement counselling and career support will be made available to staff confirmed for Voluntary Redundancy. Details of such support will be shared with staff and published on online.

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