Selection order for dismissals and layoffs in detail

In respect of collective or individual dismissal for economic reasons, the employer should first investigate whether the affected employees can be transferred to any vacant position. This obligation applies only when the discussion regarding dismissal is taking place and the employee must possess satisfactory qualifications for the vacant position. The investigation should be made within the whole legal entity within which the employee is employed, including in other geographical locations. However, this obligation does not extend to the wider corporate group. 

The applicable legislation also lays down a priority rating based on the length of employment at the specific workplace in question. The main rule is that employees who have been employed longer have priority over those who have been employed for a shorter period (‘last in, first out’). If the employer can only offer continued work to an employee following relocation of the employee, the employee has priority only if s/he has satisfactory qualifications for the available position.

Note that different rules regarding last in, first out are allowed if agreed upon between the employer and the employees’ local organisations. A prerequisite for such an agreement is that the employer is bound by a collective bargaining agreement.

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Author: Elmzell

Date: December 2019