(Revised: 11/2020)


A misallocation is defined as duties of a position that are inconsistent with the scope of duties listed in the State Personnel Board (SPB) classification specification. Each classification is distinguished by the class specification – a legal document approved by the SPB and the Department of Human Resources (CalHR) that describes the duties, responsibilities, typical tasks and qualification standards for that classification. Delegated departments are under obligation by law to uphold the State’s Classification Plan and to ensure allocation of every position to the appropriate classification. The Classification Plan is a system under which positions are grouped into classifications based on their current duties and responsibilities. CalHR has the authority to audit position allocations and order Corrective Action Plans (CAP).


It is the policy of the Department of General Services (DGS) that misallocated positions should be corrected as soon as possible but no later than 60 days after the date DGS or CalHR identifies a misallocated position.

In a limited number of cases, the unusual nature or level of the class, a lack of vacant positions, and/or a large number of misclassifications needing correction, DGS may not be able to correct the misclassification(s) within 60 days. When this occurs, DGS must have a CAP with an applicable timeline approved by CalHR within 60 days of the date the position is identified as misallocated.

Corrective Action Plans

CAPs should present a clear course of action to resolve the misallocation at the earliest opportunity. All CAPs should include the concept of making the employee whole by offering the employee a reasonable alternative before an involuntary correction action is implemented. When developing the CAP, special considerations should be given to the impacted position(s) such as employee status issues, merit issues, as well as to SPB and the Memorandum of Understanding. A CAP to resolve the misallocation(s) may address positions individually or collectively, depending upon the nature of the misallocation problem.


In order to determine if a position is misallocated, a desk audit may be performed, if necessary. An employee, a supervisor, or the Office of Human Resources (OHR) can initiate a desk audit. (Refer to “Desk Audit” section in this Manual.)

The following are options when correcting misallocated positions:

1. Restructure Duties to Support Allocation

A restructuring of duties is probably the most common approach used to correct a misallocated position.


The Program and/or contracted Client Agency with the misallocated position should work with the Classification and Pay (C&P) Analyst to ensure that appropriate duties/tasks are assigned to the position and are not being removed from another position, which could possibly impact the position’s allocation. If the duties of all positions that are affected are agreed upon, the Program and/or contracted Client Agency must submit a new Essential Functions Duty Statement for each position to C&P for approval prior to implementation and discussion with the employee.

2. Transfer Employee to a Vacant Position in the Same Class

Regardless of the geographic area of recruitment, the appointing authority has the discretion to reassign an employee to a position in the same class at any location within the State.


If this option is selected, based on the Desk Audit analysis and discussion with the employee, the misallocated employee can be transferred to another Branch/Division/Office, which has a vacancy for the same classification with the agreement of the receiving Branch/Division/Office. A Request for Personnel Action (RPA) package must be submitted to OHR by the receiving Program and the employee’s name entered as a “transfer.” (Refer to appropriate MOU before considering transfer option.) (Refer to “RPA Process” section in this Manual.)

3. Pending a Future Vacancy in the Same Class

If a position in the correct class becomes vacant within 120 days, it is permissible to allow the correction to take effect when the position is vacated. In certain circumstances, it may be possible to request approval for a corrective action of up to 12 months in the future, when a future vacancy is certain.


If this option is selected, based on the Desk Audit analysis, CalHR approval is required prior to offering it to the employee in the misallocated position. With CalHR’s approval, the employee remains in the misallocated class until a vacancy occurs and then, with the agreement of the receiving Program and/or contracted Client Agency, the misallocated employee may be transferred via the RPA process. (Refer to the “RPA Process” section in this Manual.)

4. Voluntary Transfer to a Different Class at Substantially the Same Salary Level In lieu of Layoff

A transfer to a different class must be voluntary because it requires a change in status. Therefore, a corrective action can be affected by a transfer to a different class.


If this option is selected, based on the Desk Audit analysis or potential layoff, CalHR approval is required to designate the position as surplus and/or State Restriction of Appointments (SROA) prior to offering it to the employee. If CalHR has approved the surplus/SROA status, the employee should be notified in writing and their signature is required as agreement. With the employee’s signature on the notification of transfer, an RPA package must be submitted to OHR for processing. (Refer to the “Layoff Process” and “RPA Process” sections in this Manual for more information.)

5. Pending Reorganization

When a reorganization is planned and to be accomplished within 120 days, it may be appropriate that a corrective action using an option described above, be scheduled to coincide with the effective date of the reorganization.


Depending on which option is selected, refer to the applicable option discussed above. An RPA package must be submitted when appropriate.

6. Pending Specification Revision or Establishment of a New Class

CalHR will allow up to 12 months from the date of notice for a corrective action to be accomplished through a classification change. In approving such a plan, DGS will determine if the proposed classification plan change is a feasible and appropriate method of correcting the misallocation. The plan must include specific dates for submission to CalHR and calendaring with SPB.


Refer to the “Board Item” section in this Manual for additional information. An RPA package must be submitted when appropriate.

7. Pending Retirement or Resignation of Employee

If the employee in a misallocated position will separate from the position within the next 24 months, and it is not possible in the foreseeable future to reallocate the position to the correct class using other options described above, a request may be made to CalHR to allow the employee to remain in the misallocated class until retirement. However, should any opportunity appear to correct the misclassification in the interim, it should be done.


If CalHR approves and if this option is selected, the appropriate separation documents will be processed by OHR’s Personnel Transactions Unit (PTU). However, if the employee does not separate within the 24-month time frame one of the other options described above must be implemented to correct the misallocation.

8. Voluntary Demotion to a Lower Class

An employee may request a voluntary demotion to a lower class in order to avoid a mandatory transfer or other undesirable placement. This should be permitted if the downward movement does not displace another employee. In some instances, a red circle rate would be offered in order to ease the financial adjustment an employee may have to make. (Refer to the “Red Circle Rate” section in this Manual for information on the Red Circle Rate process.)


If this option is selected, based on the Desk Audit analysis, the employee must be informed of their other options and sign the notification indicating that they are voluntarily demoting. An RPA package with a copy of the signed notification and the demotion is processed.

9. Use of State Restriction of Appointment (SROA)

In situations where it is unlikely that a vacancy will occur in the near future at DGS, but some turnover in the class is likely within the geographic area of recruitment, the employee’s class should be placed on the SROA list. This will require other appointing authorities with vacant positions to consider the employee in the position requiring correction. (Refer to the “SROA/Surplus/Reemployment/Super SROA” section in this Manual for information on the process.)

Requests for SROA list placement must be approved by CalHR.


Refer to the “SROA/Surplus/Reemployment/Super SROA” section in this Manual for information on the process.

10. Involuntarily Geographic Transfer of Employee

An involuntary geographic transfer is costly to the State and potentially disruptive to the employee. In accordance with Government Code section 19994.1(b), the affected employee should be given a written notice of the transfer 60 days in advance of the effective date of the transfer. The employee’s personal situation should also be considered in order to avoid hardship. The need for special schools, unique medical requirements, and spousal employment are examples to be considered.

This action is appropriate under the following circumstances:

a) The area of recruitment of the employee’s class includes the new location.
b) The employee has been unwilling to transfer to a different class at the same level in the same location.
c) The employee is unwilling to geographically relocate to a vacant position in his/her class.
d) The employee is unwilling to voluntarily demote to a lower class and accept a red circle rate in the same location.
e) The appointing authority will pay moving expenses.

11. Transfer Employee to a Different Class in lieu of Demotion through Layoff

This action is appropriate under the following circumstances:

a) No corrective action options described earlier in this section will correct the misallocation.
b) It is offered as an alternative to demotion.
c) A new probationary period would not be required under SPB Rule 322.


Consider establishing a hiring freeze within that class whenever such a freeze would benefit the expeditious correction of misallocation.

12. Demote Employee through Layoff

A corrective action implemented under this option always requires prior approval by CalHR. This is the last resort option and should be used if no other options (1-11) are applicable. Keep in mind that the employee should have been, if at all possible, offered a position that would have made them whole.


Consider transferring the employee to a position in the same or different class at the employee’s level in the same or different location or voluntary demotion.

The following requirement should be met:

The affected employee(s) must be the least senior and should be the one(s) in the misallocated position(s). This plan normally would not involve demoting a noninvolved employee in a position or class not identified as misallocated.