The Wage and Salary Program reflects the College’s commitment to fairness and equity in establishing a competitive compensation program. The program is reviewed annually to evaluate the College’s effectiveness in achieving its compensation goals.
To provide fair and equitable compensation for all staff employees through a wage and salary structure that:
- Employs objective standards to classify positions based upon job content;
- Establishes generally competitive compensation rates for individual positions based upon comparisons with comparable jobs at similar institutions;
- Enables the College to attract, retain and reward competent employees, and
- Is financially viable in terms of the institution’s current and expected financial resources.
History and Structure of the Program
The Claremont Colleges Wage and Salary Program was developed by the Colleges in consultation with professional management consultants who provided expert counsel in the fields of compensation structure and wage and salary administration. The program is administered at each of the Claremont Colleges through the Human Resources Office at that College. The Pitzer College Wage and Salary Program is administered by the Director of Human Resources who reports to the Vice President for Administration and Treasurer.
The Wage and Salary Program establishes objective and uniform standards to evaluate positions in order to assure fair and equitable pay rates. Positions are analyzed for job content and evaluated under the Wage and Salary Program based upon varying degrees of difficulty and responsibility inherent in the position. Positions are then classified into grades and recommended salary ranges are established reflecting the relative complexity of positions in relationship to each other based upon the comparison of various aspects of a job (e.g. the skill or knowledge required to perform its duties, the amount of creativity of resourcefulness required, the administrative responsibility that comes with the position in terms of guiding or supervising the work of other people, and the impact of decisions and actions made in a given job upon the operation of the institution). Classification of a position in a salary grade involves a careful determination of the relationship of that position to other jobs internally and the application of data from wage surveys done with local area employers and comparable educational institutions. It should be noted that it is the position that is evaluated and not the individual incumbent in the position.
The pay structure identifies recommended salary ranges for each salary grade. The mid-point range of the salary grade represents that point at which it is anticipated an employee has developed the knowledge of the organization and the level of skills in his/her specific tasks that enable the employee to be fully productive. Orderly progression to the mid-point range of the salary grade normally occurs over a period ranging from 4 to 8 years depending on the relative complexity of the position, an evaluation of the employee’s job performance, and the availability of institutional financial resources. Optimally, an employee will achieve full productivity and reach the appropriate mid-point salary range by the completion of the fifth year of sustained acceptable job performance.
The objectives of the Wage and Salary Program are to provide for:
- Objective, written generic descriptions of positions in terms of their duties, responsibilities and qualification requirements.
- Salary grades containing ranges to allow fair and equitable compensation consistent with salaries paid by others for positions with the same or similar responsibilities within The Claremont Colleges.
- Salary ranges broad enough in each grade to permit proper rewards to individuals who demonstrate outstanding performance and service.
- Orderly progression through the salary ranges and grades.
- Other objectives that the College, at its discretion, may deem appropriate or necessary.
Normally, employees are hired at or near the entry-level salary recommended for that position and progress to the appropriate mid-point range of the salary grade. In some cases, and primarily as a result of competitive market conditions, it may be necessary to fill a position at a salary level that is beyond the recommended entry level for the position. In such cases, salary adjustments necessary to accommodate progression through the recommended salary range may be modified accordingly.
Guidelines for distributing salary increases are developed each year by the Senior Staff and the Director of Human Resources in order to determine the best distribution of available budget funds, generally keeping the following goals in mind:
- Fair and equitable compensation;
- Orderly progression to the mid-point range appropriate for each position;
- Competitive compensation based on market indices for comparable positions at educational institutions of our type;
- Other goals that the College, at its discretion, deems appropriate or necessary.
Salary adjustments normally coincide with the beginning of the fiscal year on July 1st. Employee supervisors are expected to make salary recommendations for individual employees keeping within the overall salary guidelines established in conformance with fiscal goals and budget guidelines adopted by the Board of Trustees and based upon the employee’s job performance.
All existing position descriptions within the Wage and Salary Program are reviewed periodically to ensure their correct classification. Newly created positions are incorporated into the Program by the same means of evaluation used for existing jobs. Provision is also made for review and re-evaluation of position classifications where there has been a significant change in the job content or where valid reasons exist to question the accuracy of the existing classification.
An employee requesting such review should notify his/her supervisor. The supervisor will identify the new job content and contact the Director of Human Resources to discuss the request for review. The Director of Human Resources will evaluate the request and make a recommendation to the department supervisor and the Vice President/Treasurer as to whether there should be a change in the existing grade level or simply a revision of the job description. Again, it should be noted that the evaluation process considers the position content and not the incumbent.
The Wage and Salary Program normally is reviewed annually to determine the College’s effectiveness in implementing its compensation goals. Criteria used to evaluate the program may include, but are not limited to, a review of employee retention/turnover statistics; comparison of actual salary and benefits paid at comparable institutions, and review of the general economy and labor markets. In addition to wage surveys by local area employers, Pitzer College utilizes comparative salary and benefit information for certain benchmark positions at educational institutions participating in the Association of Independent California Colleges and Universities (AICCU) and at The Claremont Colleges. Taking into consideration the College’s competitive vacation and benefit policies, employees compensated within 10% of the appropriate market comparison or recommended step/mid-point range are considered to be at market parity.
This program description is intended to serve as an expression of the College’s intentions with respect to staff wages and salaries and is for informational purposes only. In no way shall this program description impose any obligation, contractual or otherwise, for the College to conduct a wage or classification study or implement a particular wage or salary schedule. Such decisions remain at the College’s sole discretion.
Last updated: 6/1/12