Staff Salary Plan

Policy no. IV-3
Effective date: 01/01/2008
Scope: Staff
Exclusions: Faculty, executive staff, and student employees

Policy Statement

The Staff Salary Plan is the program designed to administer salary according to the university's philosophy for all full-time, part-time, term, and temporary staff.  The Staff Salary Plan includes three distinct elements. The first element is the development and maintenance of a university-wide salary structure.  The second element is the communication of annual salary review guidelines.  The third element is the opportunity for individual salary increases through meritorious performance reviews.  The Compensation Office is responsible for designing and updating the salary structure and issuing salary review guidelines, entitled Annual Salary Administration Guidelines, which includes 1) Salary Adjustments Guide for merit increases, 2) Job Family Relationships and Salary Grade assignments, and 3) Annual Salary Structure.  The supervisor working with the Compensation Office is responsible for administering the individual salary reviews in compliance with budget requirements.

Salary Structure

A salary structure will be designed and updated to establish salary grades and salary ranges for senior staff and staff positions.  In order for positions to be included in the salary structure, position descriptions must be drafted.  All position descriptions are reviewed using the university's job evaluation system and are assigned a salary grade.  This grade assignment defines the relative value of a position to other university jobs and the relevant market value.

The salary structure will be maintained through annual analyses of market data, management objectives and university economic conditions.  While the Compensation Office is responsible for the validity of the salary structure design, on-going maintenance, and salary grade assignments, all supervisors are responsible for drafting and submitting new position descriptions in a timely manner and for updating position descriptions when duties are significantly changed.  If there is any doubt as to whether the changes are significant, it is in the best interest of the employee that the supervisor submit the position description for review.  Position descriptions should be submitted to the Compensation Office for salary grade assignments only once within a twelve-month period.  No offer of employment or change in compensation should be made without the employee's position being properly classified and included in the salary structure.

Salary Administration Guidelines

On an annual basis, the Compensation Office will issue a salary adjustment guide that is reviewed by the Chief Financial and Administrative Officer and a University Budget Office Administrator and approved by the President.  This guide establishes the suggested merit budget factor and is the primary structure supervisors will use in recommending employee merit increases.  Some departments may be required to use an approved, modified departmental guideline in lieu of the university guide.  Either primary  salary adjustment guide relates employee performance and current salary to a quartile position within a salary range.  The guide defines a percentage range that corresponds to the merit review, budget, and the employee's placement in the salary range. Supervisors are responsible for using the guide to select the correct annual performance increase from among the percentage options.

Individual Salary Increases

Employees have the opportunity to increase their compensation by moving through their position's salary range or by moving to a different salary grade.  Employees normally move through the salary range by earning merit increases at the time of their annual performance management review. To be eligible for a performance increase, the employee must meet standards in all important aspects on the performance management review and make progress on annual objectives.

Supervisors also have the option of providing a vacation raise (maximum of 10 days in one anniversary year) in lieu of a salary increase.  The vacation raise option can be provided to an employee whose performance is “meets standards, good contributor” or above on the performance management outline.

From time to time, an employee may transfer to another position in the same salary grade.  This transfer is considered a lateral transfer and generally there will be no associated increase in salary unless the employee is being considered at the same time for an annual salary review.

When an employee moves to a different salary grade voluntarily, the salary may be adjusted to a lower or higher rate in order to fall within the new grade's salary range and to be in line with other employees working in the same position.  The adjustment will be calculated using the Salary Adjustment Guide in effect and will be effective at the time of promotion or salary grade change.  The annual performance management review should be conducted on the employee’s performance review date.

Related Salary Conditions

Change in employment status: If an employee elects to change his/her employment status, there will be no change in compensation other than the adjustment for the new work hours, assuming that the employee is performing the same job.

Salary exceptions: An unbudgeted or off-scheduled salary increase may be requested by a supervisor with extensive supporting documentation but must be approved by the department head, dean or vice president, and the Associate Vice President of Human Resources.  No commitments will be made to the employee until receiving these approvals.

Salaries above the range maximum: The salary range maximum does not limit an employee's opportunity to be considered for a reward when the employee's performance is consistently above expectations.  In cases where the employee's salary is at the range maximum or where a recommended increase will move the salary above range maximum, a lump sum amount may be awarded to the employee in lieu of the annual salary increase.   A recommendation for lump sum reward will be handled in the same manner as recommending performance increases.

Interim assignments: If an employee is reassigned to another position in a higher or lower salary grade for more than thirty days, the salary may be adjusted to be in line with the interim position for the duration of the interim assignment.  These types of interim assignments will be reviewed with the Director of Compensation for approval.


Policy Administration: Supervisor in coordination with Compensation Office.

References: Performance Management Policy (III-2), Performance Management Procedure (III-2a), Staff Salary Changes other than Performance Management Procedure (IV-3a), Annual Salary Administration Guidelines (access is limited to valid network users).