Gateway Center Employees Can Job Swap: Could Get a Buy-out or Early-Out

While the closing of Submission Processing is bad news, some Gateway Center employees could benefit if they are ready to retire.
As a part of the recently signed agreement between IRS and NTEU, when Submission Processing is closed, affected employees will be offered buy-outs and early-outs. Employees who are not a part of Submission Processing will not be eligible for these options.
However, if an Accounts Management or a Compliance employee (as examples) swaps jobs with a Submission Processing employee, they could take the buy-out or early-out, while the Submission Processing employee retains a job. It is a benefit for both.
Here is how it works. A Submission Processing employee in the Flat Top and a Compliance employee in the Gateway hook up. The person who is losing their job in the Flat Top must qualify for the Gateway job and be able to perform the job with minimal or no formal training. That being the case, the two employees trade jobs, enabling the Flat Top employee to retain employment and the Gateway employee to receive a buy-out for which he/she would not otherwise qualify. It’s a win-win. It especially works well if the Gateway employee is ready to retire anyway.
But there is a problem. It is not easy to find someone in a job that is being retained whose job is eligible for a swap. There are few positions in the Gateway that match the criteria.
First, an employee cannot get a “gain” during a job swap. In other words, an employee in a 5/6/7 job cannot trade for a 5/6/7/8 job. Also, a seasonal employee cannot trade for a permanent position.
In the future, there will be an electronic job swap bulletin board where employees can list themselves as wanting to do a job swap. (Currently it is not operational, but it will be coming soon.) It is totally up to the employees to find someone to swap with whose position qualifies.
Also, when the names hit the job swap bulletin board, it will be first come, first served. EOD date, etc. will not enter into it.
“Job swapping is a great opportunity for those who can take advantage of it,” commented Rick Riley in a recent Meet & Greet with employees. “The trouble is it will be difficult to find a match. As soon as the job swap electronic tool is available, we plan on letting everyone know! It is my goal to get all of these things available to employees as soon as possible.”
With the signing of the Agreement between IRS and NTEU, the job swap bulletin board should be coming soon. Employees in Submission Processing will be briefed on the agreement in the next thirty days.
“It would be good to get a jump on it and find someone who is willing to switch jobs,” added Mr. Riley. “It may not be easy but it will be a good way to help a lot of people. We are working on the training aspect of it, hoping to lessen the requirements to enable people to move into swapped positions.”
According to the agreement, there will be three buy-outs: one will be late this year (sometime between October and November), one in October/November of 2018 and one in June-July 2019. The buy out will be a maximum of pre-tax $25,000, prorated for seasonal employees as to how many months worked in their final year.
In order to qualify for a buyout, an employee must have worked here continuously for three years and be currently employed, be serving in a position to which the buy-out (VSIP) is offered (which is where the job swap comes into play) and must receive approval from the agency offering the VSIP.
For an early-out (VERA), eligible employees, among other requirements, must have completed at least 20 years of creditable service and be at least age 50, or have completed at least 25 years of creditable service regardless of age and have been continuously employed by the agency for at least 31 days before the date that the agency initially requested OPM approval of VERA.