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Reductions in Force



RIF Planning, Preparation, and Oversight

We can oversee, administer, and guide your Agency’s Restructuring or Reorganization Team in conducting a Reduction in Force (RIF). OPM services include:

  • Advising and assisting in negotiations
  • Developing action plans, including options for utilizing authorities such as VSIP and VERA
  • Providing technical assistance related to validating RIF essential data during the Official Personnel Folder (OPF) review process
  • Assisting with preparation and release of RIF data to employees
  • Assisting in the application of AutoRIF software and developing retention registers
  • Providing technical assistance in making RIF placement decisions
  • Completing and reviewing draft competitive levels in competitive areas subject to RIF
  • Providing AutoRIF technical briefings and onsite user assistance
  • Setting up AutoRIF for processing RIF actions
  • Running pre-RIF analysis to determine change to lower grade and separations impact
  • Developing RIF notification packages and assisting in their preparation
  • Preparing managers for delivery of RIF notices and consulting regarding notice delivery
  • Preparing agency HR staff and others for RIF counseling activities

Infrastructure Evaluation

HR Office/RIF Team Infrastructure Needs

In partnership with your agency’s restructuring team, we can help you accomplish downsizing and related Reduction in Force (RIF) activities as needed throughout specific portions of your agency.

We will work with you to:

  • Identify gaps in your Human Resource (HR) staff’s skills that would be necessary to plan and conduct a RIF;
  • Develop plans for your operating HR office based upon your actual need to conduct a RIF;
  • Determine the condition of HR records, and assist with file updating or correcting; and
  • Improve the operational RIF skills of your HR staff through training, coaching and mentoring, and as necessary supplementation.

RIF Components

To provide a foundation of understanding downsizing and reengineering options, OPM will work with your agency to educate staff on the following Reduction in Force (RIF) components:

  • RIF Planning
  • RIF Mechanics
  • Transfer of Function
  • RIF Entitlements and Benefits
  • Organization Design and Position Classification
  • The Use of AutoRIF Software

RIF Management

Change Management Education

We can conduct customized briefings for your managers and leadership team on how to prepare your staff for change. Sessions cover:

  • Identifying barriers to change in organizations
  • Facilitating change in organizations
  • Developing communication plans to support the change strategies
  • Handling transition
  • Managing the transition—letting go, new beginning
  • Balancing personal interests with employee interests
  • Understanding new vs. old business needs
  • Developing a change management plan for each manager

Note: These briefings can be adapted for any level of the organization

RIF Alternatives

Developing Strategic Alternatives to RIF

Sometimes RIF is not your only option!

OPM will consult with your agency human resources staff to develop a placement plan for employees in lieu of Reduction in Force (RIF). Various options are available and can include use of the early retirement authority, buyout authority, establishing an internal priority placement program, relocation bonuses, hiring freezes, and other potential alternatives to RIF. OPM consultants will assist you in preparing a business cost analysis for an agency facing downsizing or restructuring and choosing to consider alternatives to RIF. This cost analysis will include the financial impact associated with using various reduction incentives and options.

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