Position Description                               Personnel Records/Files
Performance Evaluation                          Layoff
Reinstatement                                         Seniority Dates

Classification System

The classification of a position is determined by the duties and responsibilities assigned to the position. The University of Wisconsin-River Falls, as well as other UW campuses and state agencies, is under the jurisdiction of the Office of State Employment Relations. The Division of Merit Recruitment and Selection determines and audits all classification changes which are delegated to the Office of Human Resources.

The classifications used at UW-River Falls are consistent to the classifications at other UW campuses. To view a complete listing of state classifications, please refer to the Office of State Employment Relations web site at:

Probationary Period

All new employees are required to serve a probationary period. Most probationary periods are for six months, though some may be longer. For example, employees who assume supervisory or management positions serve a twelve-month probationary period. The probationary period is meant to provide an opportunity for observing how employees apply skills and abilities to the tasks for which they were hired. A probationary period is also required when employees are promoted into higher-level classifications. If employees transfer or seek reinstatement to another campus or state agency, a permissive probationary period of six months may be required.

Employees should contact the Office of Human Resources for specific information regarding probationary periods.

Position Description

The purpose of the Position Description (PD) form is to document the major goals and worker activities assigned to a particular position. It defines the work to be performed in relation to the overall goals of the work unit. It is also the document used in determining the appropriate classification and level of a position and it can be the criteria for evaluation as well as the basis for identifying training needs. The position description is not, however, entirely inclusive. A supervisor may assign additional duties that logically and directly relate to the position. As the duties and/or responsibilities of a position change, the PD should be revised and submitted to the Office of Human Resources.

The Office of Human Resources recommends that departments review PD's with employees during their annual evaluations. A review of the position description allows the supervisor to evaluate the employee’s job performance and to offer guidance, feedback, and recommendations relative to job performance. It also allows the employee to conduct a self-evaluation and to review personal goals and objectives.

Whenever a position description update occurs, you must submit the original position description to the Office of Human Resources for their review. A copy of your PD may be obtained from the Office of Human Resources as necessary.

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Personnel Records/Files

Confidential records of all classified employees’ education, experience, and general work-related data as well as confidential payroll records are officially maintained in the Office of Human Resources.

Employees have the right to view their own personnel records. Classified employees are required to submit a written request to their supervisor and the Office of Human Resources. Within a reasonable amount of time, a representative of Human Resources will allow the employee to view their file. The representative will be present during the viewing of the personnel file to ensure that no documents are removed from or added to the personnel file. A represented employee may authorize a designated grievance representative to review the file on the employee’s behalf in the presence of a designated management representative. In such a case, the written request must specifically identify the representative authorized to view the file.

Upon an employee’s request, all work rule violations that did not involve criminal violations are removed from the employee’s file after a twelve-month period from the date of violation.

Neither employees nor their authorized representatives may view any confidential pre-employment information or confidential information relative to promotions out of the bargaining unit.

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Performance Evaluation

In April/May of each year, supervisors are required to prepare a written performance evaluation for each of their classified employees. The purpose of the evaluation is to communicate performance standards to the employee based on key responsibilities of the position, to provide an objective evaluation in terms of standards established for the position, to establish improvement and/or development goals, to discuss employee career goals, and to provide a mechanism for employee feedback and input.

During the probationary period, the supervisor is required to evaluate and provide input on an employee’s performance at the third and sixth month of employment. An employee may be dismissed during the probationary period if performance expectations are not met.

The original performance evaluation will be kept in the employee’s personnel file.

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The University of Wisconsin-River Falls maintains the right to lay off employees or reduce work hours as a result of a shortage or stoppage of work or funds, reorganization, or the abolishment of a position.

Layoffs generally are guided by seniority. An affected employee about to be laid off may be able to exercise other options such as transferring to a vacancy, displacing a less senior employee, or voluntarily demoting to a lower classification in a different position. Employees who are laid off do have recall rights back to the university if vacancies in their classifications should occur. The university attempts to provide as much notice as possible if a layoff becomes necessary.

Non-Represented employees are covered under the layoff procedures in the Wisconsin Administrative Code. They should also consult with Human Resources for additional information. 

Represented employees are urged to consult with their union contracts and representatives for specific layoff procedures.

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Permanent employees who leave state service for reasons other than misconduct or delinquency are eligible for reinstatement in any state agency for a period of five years from the date of resignation. The seniority will be the original date of employment adjusted to exclude the period of separation.

Reinstatement may be to the same employing unit, a different employing unit, or to a different agency. Persons wishing to be reinstated must contact the Human Resources Office to file a request for a reinstatement. Requests that are submitted to the Office of Human Resources are kept on file for six months. Requests must be updated every six months in order to remain active.

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Seniority Dates

An employee's seniority date, in most cases, is the original date of employment with the state as a permanent employee. Adjusted hiring dates usually occur because of a break in service. The seniority date/adjusted date stays the same whether an employee works full-time or part-time. The percentage of appointment affects the accumulation of time toward retirement, but it does not affect the seniority date. The seniority/adjusted date does not change if an employee transfers, is promoted, or is reclassified to a new classification.

The seniority date is used for a number of important determinations such as vacation earnings and layoffs.  It may be used for vacation scheduling, shift selection, and overtime assignments. However, specific departmental policies can exist that impact how seniority is applied.  For more information regarding seniority, please contact the Office of Human Resources.


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An employee who is retiring or leaves state service voluntarily is required to submit a letter of resignation. The employee’s letter of resignation shall contain the reasons for separation and the effective date of separation. The letter shall be submitted to the Office of Human Resources with a copy to the supervisor not less than two weeks prior to the effective date, unless the employee and appointing authority have agreed to an alternate date. Upon submission of a notice of resignation, there can be no withdrawal or stopping of the separation action except upon mutual written agreement between the employee and the university.

Employees must fill out and obtain signatures on the Classified Exit Checklist before their departure. All university keys, uniforms, equipment and other university property provided to the employee must be returned at the time of departure.

Permanent employees who voluntarily separate may be reinstated to positions in the same, counterpart or lower pay range for which they may be qualified within five years from separation upon request from the employee. Please consult with the Office of Human Resources regarding reinstatement. 

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