Whenever a supervisor wants to make a change affecting bargaining unit employees' personnel policies, practices or conditions of employment, regardless of whether the change is self-generated or directed by higher-level management officials, the union must be given reasonable notification of the proposed change and the right to request bargaining.
Installations have different practices and procedures as to how union notification is accomplished - supervisors should become aware of them. Many are detailed in the parties' collective bargaining agreement while others are simply past practices. (Past practices are discussed in the next section.) Local practice may allow supervisors to notify the union directly when changes are being proposed or it may require that all union notification go through the civilian personnel office.
Whatever the local practice is, supervisors would normally be required to give sufficient written notice of the proposed change to working conditions to the appropriate union representative. The notification should include a proposed implementation date. If the union timely requests bargaining over the change, management must delay implementation until the negotiations have been completed. If the change is local to a supervisor's area, he/she will probably be expected to negotiate the change with the union. Broad, activity-wide changes will likely be negotiated by the installation negotiation team or some other ad hoc group.
If the union does not timely respond to the notification of proposed change, the union has waived its right to negotiate and supervisors can unilaterally implement the change described in the correspondence to the union. (Make sure there is sufficient documentation to support the action.)
Agreements reached during the life of collective bargaining agreement are often codified as memorandums of understanding (MOUs.) They can either be appendixes to the contract or can be stand alone agreements.