362 Change to Lower Level

362.1 Purpose and Authority

Changes are initiated based on the application of the employee or at the request of the installation head. Postal officials who are not authorized to take final action provide recommendations to the higher authority.

362.2 When Change to Lower Level May Be Made

362.21 At Request of Employee

Employees may be changed to a position of lower–grade level at their own request, without regard to adverse action procedures, when their written requests establish that the changes are made solely for personal reasons in their own interests. Employees’ written requests become a part of their official personnel folders. The request must contain the following facts:

  1. Employee and not the postal official initiated the request for the action.
  2. Postal official, or any superior, has not pressured the employee.
  3. Employee fully understands the requested transaction and considers the reduction to be in his or her self-interest and benefit.
362.22 Because of Performance

When an employee’s performance is unsatisfactory due to the employee’s inability to do the work, a change to a lower grade may be made to a position where the employee can reasonably be expected to adequately perform. A written notice prepared in compliance with the adverse action procedure precedes the change.

362.23 Relegation of a Post Office

A change to a lower grade resulting from relegation of a Post Office must be in accordance with the adverse action procedures. See 650 for nonbargaining employees. See the appropriate collective bargaining agreement for bargaining employees.

362.24 Realignments

In organizational realignments, management may offer an employee a lower–grade position. Although the offer is management–initiated, the change, if voluntarily accepted by the employee, is not processed as an adverse action. In realignments involving a RIF, 354.2 governs voluntary changes to a lower grade for nonbargaining employees.

362.3 Restrictions on Change to Lower Level

To fill a position by change to lower–grade level, an employee must meet the requirements for the new position described in the applicable qualification standard.