University of Minnesota
Office of Human Resources

AFSCME Clerical Classification Study

As part of the settlement reached in the 2001 negotiations, AFSCME and the University agreed to initiate a study of all clerical positions represented by the Clerical Unit.


The AFSCME clerical classification study was undertaken because:

  • Current classification specifications no longer described the work in the clerical job family
  • We could no longer distinguish work among the current classifications and levels
  • We were not able to gather accurate market data because of obsolete classification specifications


A committee of union and management representatives was formed to make recommendations to the compensation director for a new classification system that more accurately classifies the work performed by employees in the Clerical Unit.

In 2002-03 University clerical employees across all campuses completed a survey about their jobs called the Occupational Analysis Questionnaire, or OAQ. With the assistance of an outside consulting firm, individual job data responses were analyzed to determine proper grouping or classification of work across the University.

The Task Force has created a new classification system that reduces the current 33 classifications to 8 classifications. Based on the nature of the work being performed, these classifications are organized into three job series:

  • Office and Administrative
  • Accounting
  • Operations and Student Services

Each series has two classification levels. There also is an entry level classification of work called Office Support Assistant as well as a classification called Program/Project Specialist.

Agreement was reached during the 05-07 AFSCME Negotiations to move the current 33 AFSCME clerical classifications to 8 classifications.

On March 6, 2006 AFSCME Clerical Employees will transition to the new 8 classifications.&

Changes in the classification structure have no effect on the actual work that is being performed. No employee will receive a reduction in pay in moving into the new structure. Employees will be moved into the new classifications based on their existing classification using the Classification Realignment Chart.

Employees who believe that the new classification in which they are placed is not appropriate shall have the right to have their job reevaluated through the J.E.Q. process. Employees who believe they are at the right level but have been placed in the wrong job series shall have the right to have their placement reevaluated through an analysis of their job description and organizational chart, through August 31, 2006.

During the transition from the old classification system to the new system an interim appeals process will be in place from March, 2006 to August 31, 2006. This process will be utilized to review all appeals received by July 15, 2006. This process shall utilize an appeals panel comprised of two representatives from AFSCME and two University representatives. Effective September 1, 2006 the appeals process in Article 9, Section 4 will be used.

Ongoing information and educational sessions continue to be offered to the University community.