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3. How does the level assignment work?

The work experience of the employees is taken into account in the remuneration. This is how the TVöD stipulates: The amount of pay is determined by the pay group and the applicable level. The regulations on the levels give employees financial development opportunities within the respective pay group.

How many levels are there?

With the exception of pay group 1, the TVöD pay groups are generally assigned 6 levels (Section 16 (1) and (5) TVöD-Bund). Within the levels, a distinction is made between 2 basic pay levels (levels 1 and 2) and 4 development levels (levels 3 to 6).

How are the employees classified?

When hiring, employees are not only grouped into a pay group, but also assigned to a level. Relevant professional experience is decisive for the classification:

The following applies to pay groups 2 to 15 (Section 16 (2) TVöD-Bund):

  • Level 1 - no relevant work experience
  • Level 2 - relevant work experience of at least 1 year
  • (usually) level 3 - relevant professional experience of at least 3 years

In the case of salary group 1, on the other hand, hires must be made in level 2 (entry level). This results from Section 16 (5) of the TVöD-Bund.

Relevant professional experience means professional experience in the assigned activity or a corresponding activity related to the task (protocol declarations to § 16 paragraph 2 TVöD-Bund). Apprenticeship periods are generally not considered relevant work experience. An exception is the internship according to the collective agreement for interns in the public service (TVPöD).

Part-time professional experience must also be fully taken into account in the classification (BAG 27.3.2014 - 6 AZR 571/12 - PersR 2/2015, 50).

Are there any exceptions to the rule classification?

Yes. Regardless of the standard classifications, the employer can take into account the times of a previous professional activity in whole or in part for the level assignment in the case of new hires to cover personnel requirements, if this activity is conducive to the intended activity (Section 16 (2) sentence 3 TVöD-Bund). In the event of employment immediately following an employment relationship with the federal government, employees with relevant professional experience are compulsorily assigned to the level acquired in the previous employment relationship, and the level duration achieved in the previous employment relationship is continued (Section 16 (2) sentence 4 TVöD-Bund).

In addition, a level that has already been acquired can be fully or partially taken into account in the level assignment. According to Section 16 (3) of the TVöD-Bund, this applies to the recruitment of employees directly following an employment relationship in the public service (Section 34 (3), sentences 3 and 4 TVöD) or to an employer who applies a collective agreement comparable to the TVöD.

Finally, employees can be granted up to 2 levels higher remuneration in full or in part in advance in order to cover their personnel requirements or to retain qualified skilled workers (Section 16 (6) TVöD-Bund).

When will the next level be reached?

For advancing to the next level, the length of stay in the level of the respective pay group is decisive. According to Section 16 (4) TVöD-Bund, employees reach the next level after the following periods of uninterrupted activity within the same pay group at their employer (level duration):

  • Level 2 after 1 year in level 1
  • Level 3 after 2 years in level 2
  • Level 4 after 3 years in level 3
  • Level 5 after 4 years in level 4
  • Level 6 after 5 years in level 5

In pay group 1, the next level is reached after 4 years in the previous level (Section 16 (5) sentence 2 TVöD-Bund).

Does personal performance play a role in leveling up?

Yes. If the employee performs well above the average, the time required to reach levels 4 to 6 can be shortened. In the case of performances that are significantly below the average, the time required to reach levels 4 to 6 can be extended. This is stipulated in Section 17 (2) TVöD.

Does the staff council have a say in the classification?

The BVerwG (decision of 7.3.2011 - 6 P 15.10 - PersR 2011, 210) then regards the classification as a grouping subject to co-determination, for example according to Section 75 (1) No. 2 BPersVG, if the collective agreement prescribes the classification “automatic”. This applies, for example, to the standard classifications based on relevant professional experience in pay groups 2 to 15 according to Section 16 (2) sentences 1 - 3 TVöD-Bund or the standard classification in pay group 1 according to Section 16 (5) sentence 2 TVöD-Bund.

In those cases in which the employer is given a discretion in terms of classification, co-determination only takes effect if the department - taking into account the co-determination in wage structuring in accordance with Section 75 (3) no. 4 BPersVG - has established principles for this. This applies, for example, to the classification when considering beneficial times according to § 16 Paragraph 2 Sentence 4 TVöD-Bund or the recognition of the previous level according to § 16 Paragraph 3 TVöD-Bund. If there are no principles, then there is no right of participation.

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