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HRAR-7.10 - Organization and Position Management

Administrative Rules Adopted by Bureaus Pursuant to Rule Making Authority (ARB)
Policy category
Policy number
HRAR-7.10
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General

The City’s Central Organization and Position Management System maintains a complete inventory of the City’s positions, their attributes and reporting hierarchies. An accurate and consistent Organization and Position Management system is critical in avoiding budgetary over-expenditure and is essential in providing decision-making information in support of the City’s Human Resources and financial planning and management.


Definitions

For purposes of Position Management, the following definitions apply:

Abolished Positions: Positions eliminated by the Council in the Adopted Budget, a supplemental budget or Budget Monitoring Process (BMP), or by the P-4 process.

Authorized Positions: An authorized position would be one that has: (1) Council approval for a specific FTE and has approval for a level of funding commensurate with the position classification of that specific FTE; and (2) has not reached the end of its term (e.g. limited term, etc.). Authorized positions may be permanent or limited term in nature.

For purposes of position management, Authorized unfunded positions are recognized as separate entities from authorized positions, as defined above. An authorized unfunded position may be added to Position Management by Council direction only, and only under exceptional circumstances. An unfunded position can not be filled. A subsequent ordinance shall be required in order to fund positions defined as authorized unfunded. A position initially defined as authorized unfunded which receives approval for funding by Council becomes an authorized position.

Bureau of Human Resources (BHR): City bureau responsible for the management of the City’s Human Resources and promulgation of rules in support of this responsibility.

Budget Monitoring Report (BMP Process): Process by which adjustments are made to the City’s budget. Occurs three times annually following AP 5, 10, 13.

Budgeted Classified Positions: Positions which have been classified by Classification & Compensation, and are included in the current year budget.

Budgeted FTE: A full-time equivalent, typically one position, which is approved by Council via ordinance. The budgeted FTE gives a bureau budget authority for a position; however, the actual classification of the position is determined through a classification request (P-4) or a classification study authorized by the Bureau of Human Resources.

Budgeted Positions: Existing Positions and New Positions added by the Council in the Adopted Budget, the Budget Monitoring Process or by ordinance, less any positions abolished by Council in the Adopted Budget, Budget Monitoring Process or by ordinance. These positions can be Classified or Unclassified.

Budgeted Unclassified Positions: Positions which have not been classified by Classification & Compensation but are included in the current year budget.

Classification Request form (P-4): A classification request form is required to be submitted to Classification/Compensation by a bureau for one of several reasons:

  • To classify a newly created position
  • To reclassify an existing classified position
  • To reclassify an existing unclassified position
  • To create and gain approval of a limited term position
  • To abolish an existing position
  • To create a class specification or modify an existing class specification to reflect the duties of a position

The BHR Classification & Compensation team reviews each P-4 and approves, revises or denies the requested action. Certain classification actions require Council authorization as provided by the HR Administrative Rules. If a request requires budget authority, a copy of the P-4 is routed by BHR to Financial Planning for fiscal analysis.

Classified Positions: Authorized positions which have completed the BHR classification process and are available to be filled by bureaus. These are positions which have been reviewed by the City’s Classification/Compensation team and assigned classifications from the City’s Compensation Plan. This review is initiated by a P-4. The classification of a position is approved if the duties of the position are substantially similar to a position established in the existing council approved classification system and the requesting bureau has budget authority for the position being requested. Positions can be either covered under “classified service” or be outside of classified service (at will).

Double-fill: A budgeted position which is filled by two employees for a preapproved period of time.

Financial Planning Division (FPD): City division responsible for the coordination and development of the City’s Central Budget, managing grants, and economic forecasting. Previously the Bureau of Financial Planning.

Funded Position: A position which has approval for a level of supporting resources commensurate with the position classification.

Job Share: A full time budgeted position filled equally by two half-time employees at the discretion of City bureaus.

Lateral-fill: The act of filling an authorized position with an employee in a job class with the same pay grade at which the authorized position is budgeted. Lateral-fills of positions for less than 30 days do not require approval by the Director of Human Resources. Lateral-fills of positions expected to last more than 30 days must be pre-approved in writing by the Director.

Limited Term Position: A position which has been approved and established by the Bureau of Human Resources for a specific and finite period of time to allow coverage for specific needs related to grants, one-time funds, and special projects. A limited term position shall not exceed two (2) years except for the extension of grants or funding from outside sources. Upon showing of good cause, the Director of Human Resources may extend a limited term position.

New Positions: Positions added by the Council in the Adopted Budget, a supplemental budget or BMP process.

Over-fill: The act of filling an authorized position with an employee in a job classification with a higher pay grade than the grade at which the authorized position is budgeted. Over-fills of positions for less than 30 days do not require approval by the Director of Human Resources. Over-fill of positions expected to last more than 30 days must be pre-approved in writing by the Director.

Organizational Unit: The foundation for the City’s Organizational Structure. Organizational unit represents a logical business unit, its reporting hierarchy and includes the staff position(s) and chief position (manager/supervisor). Each organizational unit must only have one chief position and a position cannot serve as the chief of more than one organizational unit.

Position Management: The system by which the City’s inventory of positions and their attributes are maintained. Formerly Position Control.

Unauthorized Positions: An unauthorized position is an authorized position which has subsequently been eliminated on the basis that funding has been terminated or the duration of the position has ended.

Unbudgeted Positions: These are positions that have not been added by the Council in the Adopted Budget or in the Budget Monitoring Process Report.

Unclassified Positions: These are Authorized Positions that have not completed the BHR classification process and are not available to be filled by bureaus.

Under-fill: The act of filling an authorized position with an employee in a job class with a lower pay grade than the authorized position is budgeted. Under-fills of positions for less than 30 days do not require approval by the Director of Human Resources. Under-fills of positions expected to last more than 30 days must be pre-approved in writing by the Director.

Unfunded Position: An unfunded position may be added to position control by Council direction only and only under exceptional circumstances. It is defined as unfunded when it has no supporting resources commensurate to its classification. At the point a position becomes unfunded, it will be eliminated unless it has been approved by Council to remain in the Central Position Management System.

Vacancy: A budgeted position which is not filled by an employee.


Tracking Position Attributes

All authorized positions and pertinent attributes will be tracked in the City’s Central Organization and Position Management System. Once an authorized position has been added to the City’s budget, bureaus must submit a request to classify a position and a unique Position Number shall be assigned by BHR.

A number of attributes have been identified as being essential components of the Organization and Position Management System. The core attributes will at a minimum include the following: Position Classification; Position Number; Date position established; Ordinance and/or P-4 number through which a position has been created and classified; Cost Center; Authorized status; Funding Status (Funded/Unfunded); Job Share; Full time; Part time; Limited Term; Funding Expiration Date; Organizational Unit; Classification and Compensation Team Review and Allocation Status; and Vacant/Filled status.

In order to provide a framework and common understanding of the process through which changes in the official number of authorized positions are made, City of Portland core organization and position management business rules are presented below.


Authorized Positions

  1. The number of authorized positions can change via four methods only: (a) annual adopted budget (b) the Budget Monitoring Report (BMP) (c) a P-4 ordinance, and (d) a P-4 processed to abolish an authorized position, or to create a limited term position.
  2. The abolition of a position results in that position being eliminated. Both funding for the position and the position itself are eliminated.
  3. The ability to authorize Limited Term Positions has been delegated by Council to BHR. Limited Term positions are subject to budget verification by FPD. Limited Term positions which reach the end of their approved term lose their status as authorized positions and shall be eliminated. Pursuant to the HR Administrative rules relating to Limited Term positions, bureaus may also request Limited Term position extensions.
  4. Appointments for employees, except for season/casual, shall only be made into positions which have been authorized.

Synchronization of Council Authorization of Positions and Organization and Position Management System

Timing gaps may occur between when a bureau needs to create and fill a permanent authorized position and when Council approves the permanent authorized position. The process for establishing a Limited Term Position shall be used in order to accommodate these operational timing differences. Under such circumstances, the Financial Planning Division may verify that supporting resources exist for the Limited Term Position on the basis that funding is imminent (e.g. Grant has been approved, Interagency Agreement has been signed, Levy has passed). Once Council approves the permanent authorized position, the Limited Term position, which had been established as a placeholder, will be converted from a Limited Term Authorized position to a Permanent Authorized position.


Position Funding

In all instances, verification of budget adequate to cover proposed changes in the number of authorized positions, or reclassifications that result in substantial increases in costs, will be the responsibility of the Financial Planning Division. Prior to entry into the Central Organization and Position Management System, all positions shall be subject to prior verification of funding. For the purposes of this requirement, verification of funding occurs when (a) positions and associated funding are approved via Adopted Budget or BMP; or (b) a P-4 has been reviewed by Financial Planning Division for verification of adequate funding.

  1. Bureaus will not be permitted to add an authorized position to their budget without loading to the appropriate cost center a level of funding commensurate with the proposed position, unless in exceptional circumstances specific authority is granted by Council to load Authorized Unfunded positions (See Number 4 listed below in this section).
  2. Changes in funding status of specific positions will be communicated by Financial Planning Division to the Bureau of Human Resources and will be recorded in Organization and Position Management System.
  3. An Authorized Unfunded position may be added to the Organization and Position Management System by Council direction only, and only under exceptional circumstances. City employees shall not be placed in Authorized Unfunded positions. A subsequent ordinance shall be required in order to fund positions defined as Authorized Unfunded. A position defined as Authorized Unfunded, which receives approval for funding by Council, becomes an Authorized position.

Funding Verification Principles

Basic criteria will be applied by FPD in order to complete the verification of funding in support of changes to Authorized positions. At a minimum the guiding principles shall include the following:

  1. No ongoing Authorized positions shall be created utilizing one-time resources.
  2. Vacancy savings, or other similar one time funding sources, will not be used as a basis for increasing ongoing positions.
  3. One time funding sources shall be utilized only as a basis to create Limited Term Authorized positions.
  4. Funding verification may be subject to further criteria as outlined in the City’s financial management policy and related budget manuals.
  5. The bureau's and/or the City's financial condition will be considered when Financial Planning reviews the sources of funding identified in support of a change in authorized positions. Financial Planning may withhold an affirmation of adequate funds on the basis that a request runs counter to the best interest of the City’s financial health.

Policy Implementation Roles

  1. BHR shall assign Position Numbers to all new authorized positions when the budget is adopted, the BMP is approved by Council, a P-4 Ordinance has been approved by Council, or a P-4 for a Limited Term Position has been approved by BHR. BHR may also assign numbers to newly created positions as a result of the implementation of Council Adopted Classification studies, or through reclassification of an authorized position through a P-4.
  2. The Financial Planning Division (FPD) is responsible for providing a timely, accurate, and detailed list of position changes and related data from annual budget and BMP processes to the Central Organization and Position Management System staff.
  3. Bureaus shall submit a BHR Organizational Unit and Position Maintenance form to change the Bureau’s Organizational Structure and/or create new casual positions.
  4. Bureaus shall identify the source of funding for changes in Authorized Positions in BMP documents and submit P-4’s to change positions’ attributes or to transfer an authorized position to a different personnel area.

BHR Director Discretion

In order to facilitate the best interest of the City or organization and position management accuracy and accountability, the BHR Director is authorized to make exceptions to policy outlined above. The Financial Planning Director will be informed when exceptions to the policy outlined above are made by the BHR Director which results in substantial change to the number of authorized positions.


Historical notes

History

Adopted by Chief Administrative Officer July 28, 2003

Effective July 28, 2003

Revised September 16, 2005

Revised October 19, 2010

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