As the Air Force continues a civilian workforce restructure through voluntary retirement and separation initiatives, officials have instituted new flexibilities to help minimize the impact of downsizing and workforce shaping.
Unlike the previous two rounds, the third round of Voluntary Early Retirement Authority and Voluntary Separation Incentive Pay will allow civilians to fill VSIP-created vacancies at other Air Force installations, provided the losing base can show it saved an employee from involuntary separation. This will allow an exception to Department of Defense Priority Placement Program clearance procedures.
These flexibilities will be used during the third round of VERA and VSIP, which begins May 1, and will help give civilians the opportunity for continued employment. Officials said the flexibilities will be used to the maximum extent allowed.
“We’re committed to sustaining excellence, meeting fiscal requirements and minimizing negative impacts on our current permanent civilian workforce and their families,” said Michelle LoweSolis, the Air Force Personnel Center civilian force integration director. “These flexibilities will give us an even greater ability to rebalance the skills of our workforce into enduring positions at various installations.”
The survey window for the next VERA or VSIP opportunity will open during the first week of May. Applications will be due during the week of May 14, or an earlier date established by local authorities. If approved, applicants will retire or separate by Aug. 31.
“The goal is to have all civilian employees realigned to continuing positions by Sept. 30,” said Lisa Cevallos, a human resources specialist at AFPC. “We encourage managers to consider restructuring any vacant positions they have for the placement of affected employees. They should also work with their (civilian personnel sections) on additional flexible processes to help place employees.”
Employees should review all available information on the programs at the Air Force Personnel Services website and word search “VERA” and “VSIP.” For annuity estimates, employees should go to the AFPC Benefits and Entitlements Service Team automated website, EBIS, to access the retirement calculator.
After gathering information through AFPERS and EBIS, employees should contact their local CPS to discuss their individual situation, and what steps to take if they are offered VERA, VSIP or both.
For more information about civilian employment, voluntary separation programs and other personnel issues, visit AFPERS at https://gum-crm.csd.disa.mil.