In January 2003, a committee was formed under the direction of the President of CUA, the Very Rev. David O'Connell, to develop and implement a staff compensation program for the University. The goals of the initiative were to:
||Create a salary structure based on market data that would provide the foundation for applying consistent recruitment strategies in hiring qualified employees to support the University's strategic plan;|
||Ensure positions are valued in relation to other positions on campus, thus eliminating discrepancy in salaries being paid for similar type jobs; and|
||Provide all employees with clear expectations of responsibilities through written job descriptions.|
The committee's goals were integrally tied to the University's Philosophy on Human Resources Management, which includes a philosophy on compensation. This compensation philosophy states that the University is committed to "recognizing and appreciating the work of employees through a fair and equitable compensation program, taking into account the University's budget constraints, while offering benefits which reflect the institution's Catholic identity." To read the entire Philosophy on Human Resources Management, please click here.
The compensation committee consisted of a broad cross-section of university employees, who were selected by the President to ensure fair representation from each administrative area on campus. To assist with the project, the University retained the services of Mercer Human Resources consulting, a recognized leader in the development of pay systems for higher education institutions.
Before establishing a compensation structure, it was essential to determine the work that was assigned to and performed by existing positions at the University. Using the Job Description Questionnaire (see below for forms and instructions), supervisors and employees worked together to furnish the committee with this information. The following downloadable/printable forms and documents were used to aid employees and their supervisors in the data collection effort.
The compensation committee worked with Mercer Human Resource Consulting to select benchmark jobs and determine market pay for those positions. The "market" for CUA was defined by gathering data from national, regional, and higher education compensation surveys. Next, the committee analyzed all existing CUA staff positions against benchmark jobs based on six pre-defined elements. Those were:
Positions were reviewed by each committee member and were evaluated as being on the same salary level as the benchmark position, or as being either one level above or one level below the selected benchmark position.
Following the data collection and analysis efforts, the compensation committee determined that maintaining a market based, yet internally equitable salary structure can be difficult since these priorities are often in direct conflict with each other. Basic supply and demand pressures can create economic forces that result in higher compensation for employees in certain fields in comparison to individuals with greater job responsibilities in another field. For example, during the technology "boom" of the 1990s, computer programmers were able to demand higher salaries than some managers in other industries. To address these often conflicting priorities, the compensation committee developed three (3) salary structures that would account for varied market conditions and would also meet their goal of establishing a market based pay program/structure that is both fair - based on market data - and equitable. To view the three compensation structures that were developed by the committee, please click here.
The following letters and presentations will give you insight into the history, purpose and goals of the compensation study.
Compensation Study Timeline
February 12, 2003
March 3, 2003
April 16, 2003