Developing a WorkShare plan

Before you can apply for participation in the WorkShare program, you need to create a WorkShare plan.

Deciding which employees to include:

  • You must specify the employees that will take part in WorkShare. These employees must work in a defined group.
  • This group can be your entire company, a facility, department, shift, job function, or another definable unit with at least two employees
  • You must identify the employees in the affected unit by name, Social Security number, the normal weekly hours of work, and the proposed reduction in working hours
  • All employees in the affected unit must be included in the WorkShare plan and all must have the same reduction in hours 
  • You must apply the plan to only full-time and permanent part-time employees
  • Seasonal employees may not take part in WorkShare 
  • If the employees are covered by collective bargaining, the union must agree to your WorkShare plan. When you file an application to take part in WorkShare, you will need to have the signatures of the appropriate union officials.

Reducing hours

You must certify that the reduction in work hours is instead of layoffs, and give the reason for the expected duration of the work reduction. Decide in advance the duration of your WorkShare plan. It can range from 1 to 52 weeks. The reduction percentage must be shared by all employees in the unit or units you have defined. The reduction percentage may range from 10% to 60%.

Benefits to maintain

You must continue to provide the same health insurance benefits to the employees in the affected units. This means that their health insurance benefits cannot be changed because of their reduced hours of work. You must continue to provide retirement benefits to any employees participating in WorkShare. It is required that you explain any reduction in retirement benefits.

WorkShare plan details

  • Because unemployment insurance benefits are paid for weeks beginning on Sundays and ending on Saturdays, your plan must have a Sunday start date and a Saturday end date. You must specify the beginning and end dates of your WorkShare plan. Your plan cannot begin any earlier than the Sunday following the date of your application. 
  • You must be up-to-date with unemployment insurance contributions, payments in lieu of contributions, interest or penalty charges due to the Department of Unemployment Assistance.
  • You must agree to furnish all reports and information necessary for the administration of your plan, and permit access to all records that are necessary to verify and check the plan.

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