A new job classification system (UFO) officially took effect on 1 April 2003. With the introduction of the UFO, the old job descriptions were replaced by job profiles. These job profiles include different levels, based on which the salary scale is determined. The introduction of the UFO affects the classification of the employee duties in the job profiles and the salary scales for employees. What matters now is the assigned duties which an employee regularly performs, while the years of experience and personal performance were more important under the old system. New regulations must be formulated to bring about clear-cut procedures regarding classification and salary scales within the units.
The position constitutes the point of departure in applying the UFO. This is "the compilation of duties to be performed by the employee pursuant to and in accordance with what he has been assigned to do by the employer” (Collective Labour Agreement (CAO) of Dutch Universities 2004-2005, Article 1.1). The substance of a position is derived from a unit’s objective and responsibilities. The distribution of those responsibilities across different positions within a unit (that is, the unit’s structure) will determine the compilation of duties for each position. The structure of a unit is thus determinative for the remuneration prospects which may be offered in the different positions.
Hence, the compilation of duties within a position is determined by such factors as the organizational context within which the position is found and the necessary contribution which this position must make to the organization.
The substance of a position deemed essential from the organization’s viewpoint need not necessarily correspond to the highest job level of a job profile from the UFO system. Carrying out the position at that highest level is often not even possible or necessary. Consequently, the organizational context may result in it not being possible to satisfy the classification criteria in the higher levels of a job profile, and a lower level must be determined.
In these instances, the growth prospects for the employee within his own position are limited to that particular level, and he will, if he wishes to keep growing, have to look for another position. An employee’s growth prospects, then, are normally limited by what the text advertising the job vacancy states, unless there are position- or organization-related developments at a later stage.
This memorandum describes the regulations concerning the classification, salary scales, use of job‑related criteria, classification criteria and consequences for academic staff and support and management staff.
Classification and salary scale
The applicable UFO job profile and level will be determined first based on the assigned duties (see ‘Classification’). Next, the employee’s salary scale will be determined based on the conferred UFO job profile and level (see ‘Salary scale’). Normally, the salary scale is equivalent to the level of the assigned duties. There are three exceptions to this:
- for the classification: the allotted job profile and level has not been adjusted yet to a change in the assigned duties (see under 'Classification').
- for the salary scale: the employee cannot yet fully perform the assigned duties described in the allotted UFO job profile and the associated level (see under ‘Salary scale’).
Duties are classified into a UFO job profile and level at two points in time, specifically:
- upon the commencement of employment or an internal transfer;upon updating of the position.
Re: 1: When a vacancy arises, which UFO job profile and level best fit the vacant position will be determined beforehand. The duties of the new employee to be recruited will in principle be classified in accordance with that job profile and level when the employee commences employment or is transferred internally. There is one exception, namely, if a selected job profile and level indicates an ‘end situation’. If, for example, recruitment is being done for an Assistant Professor 1 position, duties and responsibilities which are associated for now with the Assistant Professor 2 job profile may be opted for as the starting situation (see also under 'academic staff'). This will also be the case if classification into the Policy Officer 3 job profile is selected as the starting situation, even though the vacancy presumes growth into the Policy Officer 2 job profile.
Re: 2: An employee’s responsibilities may change over time. A different job profile and/or level may become more applicable. Classification of duties into another job profile and/or level will come into play if there are regularly assigned duties which differ from the applicable job profile and/or level. ‘Regularly assigned duties’ mean duties which an employee has performed for at least a two-year period at the supervisor’s instruction or assigned duties for which it is clear at the start that these will not be temporary. The administrator may, on his own initiative or on the supervisor’s initiative, update the classification of the duties assigned and performed. The employee himself can also submit a request with the administrator for job maintenance if the employee believes that his duties have been classified into the wrong job profile and/or level. He must show then that he has performed assigned duties for at least two years for which another job profile and/or level fits better than the job profile and level into which his duties have currently been classified. Once it has been determined that the employee regularly performs other assigned duties, the dean or department director will decide to classify those duties into a more suitable UFO job profile and level. The administrator’s decision on a job update request constitutes a decision within the meaning of the Dutch General Administrative Law Act.
Most job profiles have different levels. A salary scale is linked to each level. In principle, an employee is placed in the salary scale which is linked to the job profile and level into which his position has been classified. In other words, he is placed in the salary scale which is associated with the job level. There is one exception to this rule, namely the use of the starting scales indicated in Article 3.8 of the Collective Labour Agreement of Dutch Universities. A starting scale may be used if an employee cannot yet fully perform a job and the associated level. Once it is determined that the employee is properly performing the job and the associated level, he will be placed in the salary scale associated with the position. An employee cannot be placed in a starting scale for longer than two years. If the employee is still not performing the job properly after this period ends, the supervisor will consult with the employee about a different career perspective, either within UT or elsewhere.
If the employee moves to a higher scale, the salary amount will be set in the next higher amount in the higher scale (promotion incremental salary increase). If the promotion date is the same as the incremental salary increase date and growth is still possible in the current salary scale, an incremental increase will be granted, too. If an employee has reached the current salary scale maximum, the date of the move to a higher scale will constitute the new month for incremental salary increases. If growth was still possible in the current salary scale, this month will not change.
There are no regulations regarding placement within the scale (which step within a salary scale applies), except that this will depend on the employee’s background and experience in relation to his current or future colleagues.
Supplementary job-related criteria may be set for appointments in certain positions or certain levels. For appointments to certain positions or levels within positions, the employee must, for instance, have a doctoral degree (see under ‘Consequences for academic staff’). Moreover, for certain positions or levels within positions, the employee may be required to have completed certain training and/or to have accumulated a certain number of years of specific experience.
Note: Such requirements may only be set before the particular job profile and level to which these requirements apply are assigned to the employee. If, in the meantime, there are regularly assigned duties as indicated in the particular job profile and level, the employee must be classified into the matching job profile and level, even if the employee does not or does not yet satisfy the job-related criteria.
Of course, the career perspective guarantees described in the Appendix to the Collective Labour Agreement of Dutch Universities 2003-2004, University Job Classification System, apply to employees who were already employed when these regulations were adopted. Otherwise, the job-related criteria must be recorded in writing beforehand in the career perspective offered. Agreements about the way in which the employee will be enabled to gain the required qualifications should also be recorded in that instance.
To a certain extent, the UFO job profiles and levels are described in abstract terms, allowing for limited room to flesh out the terminology used in one's own way. This elaboration on the terminology must fit within the job profile and must not expand it. It may involve fleshing out certain described activities further or giving interpretations to terms in the classification criteria, such as the terms 'more complex problems’ and ‘very complex problems’ in the classification criterion ‘Administrator Duties’ (level 3 and 2, respectively) of the UFO job profile IT Administrator.
The personal interpretation of these terms should occur, on the one hand, at the unit level, because different aspects will be emphasized in each unit. On the other hand, there should be continuing coordination between the units at the UT level.
Consequences for academic staff
The diagram below indicates several job profiles which are distinguished within the academic staff:
Job profiles and levels
Teaching and research
Professor scale 1
Professor scale 2
Associate Professor 1
Associate Professor 2
Assistant Professor 1 (universitair docent 2)
Assistant Professor 2
(universitair docent 2)
Doctoral candidate scale
Assistant and Associate Professor’s career perspective
The university’s core duties pertain to teaching and education. The positions within the job family ‘Teaching and Education’ are therefore at the core of an academic career. Due to the crucial importance of these positions to academic teaching and research at UT and given the substance of the Assistant Professor and Associate Professor job profiles, a choice has been made to always take, in applying the Assistant Professor and Associate Professor job profiles, the highest job levels, Assistant Professor 1 and Associate Professor 1, respectively, as the point of departure for determining the content of the job. Performance of the Assistant Professor 2 and Associate Professor 2 jobs is viewed as a temporary situation. Employees whose positions have been classified into the Assistant Professor 2 and Associate Professor 2 job profiles are expected to advance to an Assistant Professor 1 and Associate Professor 1 position within five years.
An example: An employee's position has been classified into the Assistant Professor 2 job profile, salary scale 11. If he cannot perform the job in full yet, a starting scale will be applied for a period of at most two years, salary scale 10, in accordance with Article 3.8 of the Collective Labour Agreement of Dutch Universities. Once he is performing the job properly, he will be placed in salary scale 11. He will be expected to advance to the duties and job performance of an Assistant Professor 1 position. Such advancement must occur within five years. Once it is determined (within a five-year period, however) that the duties are regularly being performed at an Assistant Professor 1 level, the assigned position will be classified as Assistant Professor 1, with the accompanying salary.
For each employee whose position has been classified into an Assistant Professor 2 or Associate Professor 2 job profile and level, it must be determined at some point whether the employee is satisfying the conditions which the Assistant Professor 1 or Associate Professor 1 job profile states. It is up to the dean to figure out how he will specifically make this determination and decide this issue. A committee may, for example, be utilized. Once it is determined (within a five-year period, however) that the duties are regularly being performed at an Assistant Professor 1 or Associate Professor 1 job profile level, the duties will be classified into the Assistant Professor 1 or Associate Professor 1, respectively, job profile, with the accompanying salary. If it is determined that an employee has been unable to advance to duties at the Assistant Professor 1 or Associate Professor 1 level, the superior will consult with the employee first about another career perspective inside or outside the institution.
A move from an Assistant Professor to an Associate Professor position may result from an application or a change in the assigned duties. A person will be appointed by the Executive Board as an Associate Professor pursuant to Article 31 of the Executive and Management Regulations. If the assigned duties change, this will be considered a situation in which an Assistant Professor is regularly being assigned duties which are associated with an Associate Professor job profile, at a certain level. It is up to the dean to figure out how he will specifically make this determination and decide this issue. The appointment will be made by the Executive Board. With this appointment, too, the duties will be classified into the Associate Professor job profile, with the accompanying salary, once it is determined that the duties are regularly being performed at the Associate Professor level.
A person may be appointed as an Associate Professor if the requirements in the Associate Professor UFO profile are met with respect to both Teaching and Education (and with respect, of course, to Organization as well). Nonetheless, there may be a difference in emphasis between the teaching and research activities to be performed. In practice, appointment advisory committees regularly give more importance to research activities. To prevent a distinction from arising in the appreciation for teaching and for research, the Executive Board hereby emphasizes its policy that a person who has made a contribution to teaching which is relatively bigger may also be appointed as an Associate Professor. Such people may be Assistant Professors with outstanding performance who, as a result of an appointment to an Associate Professor position, are assigned research duties in addition to developing and innovating teaching. These cases will involve teaching-related research and/or conducting research in the individual's own field of study.
Researcher and Teacher career perspective
The situation for Researcher 4 and Teacher 4 positions is comparable to that for Assistant Professor 2 and Associate Professor 2 positions. Performance of these jobs is viewed as a temporary situation. Employees whose positions have been classified as Researcher 4 or Teacher 4 positions are expected to advance to another position inside or outside the university within five years. If they want to move on to Teaching and Research positions, the doctoral degree requirement and/or the requirement regarding the Didactic UT Training Track (DUIT) will apply.
For each employee whose position has been classified into a Researcher 4 or Teacher 4 job profile and level, it must be determined at some point whether the employee is satisfying the conditions which the Researcher 3, Teacher 3 or Assistant Professor 2 job profile and level state. It is up to the dean to decide how he will flesh this out. Once it is determined (within a five-year period, however) that the assigned duties are regularly at a higher level, the position will be classified at that higher level, with the accompanying salary. If it is determined that an employee has been unable to advance to duties at the Researcher 4 or Teacher 4 level, the superior will consult with the employee first about another career perspective inside or outside the institution.
Obviously, the opportunity to be classified into positions or job levels higher than Researcher 4 and Teacher 4 will depend on the nature of the duties regularly assigned and the particular unit’s formative options (or lack of options). Thus, the supervisor and employee must properly discuss with each other what the options are (and what is not possible), so that this can timely be responded to (either by looking for a new position or by ensuring that the employee trains for the job‑related criteria applicable to the future prospects which the unit can offer the employee).
Note: Teaching at a university as described at the Teacher 2 and Teacher 1 level is not possible without a clear interplay with research activities to be performed regularly. Actually, this can only be performed, then, by employees classified into the Assistant Professor or Associate Professor profile. Hence, the Executive Board’s policy focuses on avoiding situations in which such interplay does not exist. Classifications at the Teacher 1 and/or 2 level are therefore very exceptional. The supervisor must report and explain such classifications to the Executive Board.
Professor career perspective
Before vacancies for professors are announced, the applicable job profile and level will be determined, that is, either the Professor 1 or Professor 2 job profile. Here, too, if an employee in a Professor 2 position regularly carries out duties associated with the Professor 1 job profile, the employee will be classified at the higher level. It is up to the deans to decide how they wish to determine that such a situation is present. It is noted that, officially, under Article 31(b) of the Executive and Management Regulations 2003, the Executive Board is entitled to move professors from professor salary scale 2 to professor salary scale 1.
Doctoral degree requirement
The doctoral degree requirement applies to classification in a job profile of Assistant Professor 2 and higher, Teacher 2 and higher, and Researcher 3 and higher. An employee who does not have a doctoral degree cannot be assigned the duties of Assistant Professor 2 and higher, Teacher 2 and higher, or Researcher 3 and higher. If these duties are nevertheless regularly assigned, classification will – as already indicated in the job-related criteria – follow in the matching job profile and level.
The doctoral degree requirement does not apply to professional practice professors.
Didactic UT Training Track (DUIT) requirement
To be classified in an Assistant Professor 2 and higher or Teacher 3 and higher job profile, the employee must successfully pass the competency tests for the DUIT course. It may be necessary for him to carry out one or more components of the DUIT course. Without this qualification, an employee cannot be assigned the duties of Assistant Professor 2 and higher or Teacher 3 and higher positions.
If these duties are nevertheless regularly assigned, classification will – as already indicated in the job‑related criteria – follow in the matching job profile.
If this is deviated from, the supervisor must report and explain this to the Executive Board (say, in the case of qualifications which are comparable to those gained in the DUIT course and/or the appointment of professional practice professors).
Consequences for administrative and support staff
Various UFO job profiles have been developed for administrative and support staff.
Until now, no requirements have been set for administrative and support staff jobs which clearly apply across the university (such as the doctoral degree requirement for the stated academic staff job profiles and levels).
The university’s core duties pertain to research and education. The other duties are performed by support and management staff.
As stated in the introduction, certain situations may result in it not being possible to satisfy the classification criteria in the higher levels of a job profile. Briefly put, this means that the room for a career perspective within the employee's own position does not lie in the opportunities for growth to the highest level within the allotted UFO profile, but in the opportunities which the unit can offer.
If the organization of the unit does not offer room for a higher classification, the employee’s growth prospects within his own position will be limited to the current level.
An example: The job of an Health, Safety and Environment coordinator in a working area where there are a limited number of locations and whether there are no chemical or other labs, or workplaces where hazardous substances, gases and so forth are worked with, can, because of this context, never be classified in level 1 as far as the classification criteria 'work area' is concerned. Due to this organizational context, the position must be classified into the Health, Safety and Environment coordinator 2 or 3 UFO profile and cannot be classified into the Health, Safety and Environment coordinator 1 UFO profile. Unless the work area changes, this employee will not have any growth opportunities within such a work area.
In other cases, it may be possible – if the organization deems this desirable as well – for an employee to be given a higher job level within the particular UFO job profile or a higher UFO job profile by assigning him higher-level duties at some point.
An example: An employee’s job is classified into the job profile ICT Manager 3, salary scale 9. Because he seeks further development, the employee proposes giving him higher-level duties. Since the supervisor of the unit concerned also feels that it has become necessary to give the employee higher‑level duties (as it has become apparent that the ICT environment in this unit has grown more complex over time), he assigns higher-level duties to the employee and classifies his position into the job profile ICT Manager 2 (scale level 10). Depending on the employee’s performance, he will be placed in salary scale 10 within two years.
The Dutch text of this regulation is binding. In case of a difference of interpretation, this translation cannot be used for legal purposes.