Staff Compensation Structure

The University of Michigan-Flint's staff compensation program consists of a salary structure that enables the University to manage compensation competitively against the market through market-based salary zone ranges that provide enough width to account for variation in individual experience and performance.

The goal is to maintain competitive compensation with the market.

Staff Compensation Philosophy

Role of pay- The University of Michigan-Flint will maintain a career and compensation program directed toward attracting, retaining and rewarding a highly qualified and diverse workforce to serve students, faculty and staff.  Pay will be set at levels that are competitive with the University's comparison markets.

Work/position valuation- A position zone is determined based on an evaluation of both the external competitive market for the position, as well as the relative zone among similar positions across the University.

Comparison Markets- The University benchmarks its pay against organizations with similar characteristics.  Different market comparisons are used for different positions across the Institution based on the type of position.

Pay Systems Delivery- Base salary is the primary means of pay delivery at the University.  Annual merit increases are the primary method for salary increases.  Market adjustments may also be considered when deemed necessary.

Communication/Openness- Information about pay zones, market competitiveness, how pay decisions are made, how performance is reviewed and job definitions, will be publicly available to the University community. However, information on individual pay rates will remain confidential between the University and the individual.

Roles and Responsibilities- 

Managers and Supervisors:

  • Understand the career, compensation and performance management philosophy and policies,
  • communicate effectively on matters relating to career and compensation,
  • partner with HR to deliver consistent practices, 
  • Actively participate in the University's performance feedback and development process.

Employees:

  • Partner with Human Resources to deliver consistent practices.  
  • Actively participate in the University's performance feedback and development process.

Human Resources:

  • Administer and interpret career, compensation and performance philosophy and policies.  
  • Partner with managers and supervisors to effectively deliver on career, compensation and performance practices.

Organizational Competencies:

  • Integrated knowledge sets within an organization that distinguishes it from its competitors and delivers value to customers.

Salary Structure

The University’s staff salary structure contains 16 zones. Each of the zones has an entry, midpoint, and maximum reflecting the range of compensation in the market for the positions in the zone. UM-Flint’s benchmark positions (i.e..., positions for which market data is available) are placed into the structure based primarily on an analysis of compensation in the market for each of the positions, along with internal equity considerations. Non-benchmark positions (i.e..., positions that are unique to the University or for which market data is not available) are placed into the structure based on a comparison of the scope, impact, and responsibility of the position relative to other similar positions. Posting ranges are the min to 95% of the midpoint. This allows the department to hire based on the K.S.A. relevant to the position requirements. The salary structure provides guideline for the University to set and manage compensation.  Employees canexpect to be paid within the range of the zone for their position.  Employees primarily advance through a zone through annual merit increases.

Staff Positions Posting Ranges for Flint Campus
Rounded Chart

ZONE RANGES

 POSTING RANGES

ZONE

MIN

MID (6)

MAX

ZONE

MIN

MAX

1

22,500

26,800

33,600

1

22,500

26,000

2

23,700

29,600

37,000

2

23,700

28,000

3

26,000

32,500

40,600

3

26,000

31,000

4

28,600

35,700

44,700

4

28,600

34,000

5

31,400

39,300

49,100

5

31,400

38,000

6

34,600

43,300

54,100

6

34,600

42,000

7

38,000

47,600

59,500

7

38,000

46,000

8

41,800

52,300

65,500

8

41,800

50,000

9

46,000

57,600

72,000

9

46,000

56,000

10

50,700

63,300

79,200

10

50,700

62,000

11

55,700

69,700

87,100

11

55,700

68,000

12

61,300

76,600

95,800

12

61,300

75,000

13

67,400

84,300

105,400

13

67,500

83,000

14

74,200

92,800

116,000

14

74,200

91,000

15

81,600

102,000

127,500

15

81,600

100,000

16

89,800

112,200

140,300

16

89,800

110,000

Criteria for Assigning Benchmark Positions to a Zone

Staff positions are assigned to salary zones primarily based on their market value. Many positions at the University are benchmark positions. This means that positions with similar responsibilities and skill requirements are typical in the market and reliable pay data can be found in published surveys. Benchmark positions are assigned to a zone with the midpoint closest to the market median for the position. The internal equity of all assigned positions is reviewed before finalizing zone assignments.

Compensation Zone Chart (Alphabetical)
Compensation Zone Chart by Zone

Criteria for Assigning Non-Benchmark Positions to a Zone

For other positions, market data may not be available; these are called non-benchmark positions. This occurs when positions are found in the market, but not included in salary surveys. Non-benchmark positions are assigned to the salary structure by comparing the non-benchmark position to other similar positions at the University. Positions are compared by considering:

  • Knowledge and Skills: The formal and informal expertise needed to perform the duties of the position on a day-to-day basis.  Example: Accounting rules, standards, and procedures.
  • Experience: The amount of prior experience in the same or similar position required to perform the duties.
  • Autonomy: How much supervision the position requires.
  • Influence: The impact that a position has on key organizational imperatives.  Example: Financial health, academic quality, or effectiveness of services provided within the institution.
  • Scope of Responsibility: The breadth or range of the position's operational influence within the institution.

 

Compensation Decisions

Setting Starting Salaries for New Staff Hires

Setting a starting salary involves a review by Human Resources of a position's responsibilities and requirements, as well as the skills and experience of the incumbent, using the salary range associated with the position's zone as the guideline.

Annual Salary Increases

Annual increases will occur on an annual basis and according to merit, when funds are available. The amount of the performance increase budget is determined by budget and market factors each year. Individual increase amounts are determined based on performance ratings and budget considerations. Employees with an overall rating of below expectations will not be eligible for increases.

The amount of the budget will vary each year, and the performance increase amounts will depend on the performance rating distribution. The increase amounts will not be shared until the distribution is finalized.

Position Value and Classification

FLSA

The University complies with federal and state laws that require overtime compensation be paid for certain positions. All staff positions fall under one of the two categories below:

  • “Exempt” refers to positions that are excluded from these overtime requirements.
  • “Non-exempt” refers to positions that are not exempt from legal overtime requirements.

In accordance with legal requirements, the classification of a position as exempt or non-exempt depends on the content of the position as outlined in federal regulations. It does not depend on how the employee (or manager) wants to classify the position. Human Resources makes the final decision as to whether a position is exempt or non-exempt based on an analysis of the position as compared to federal regulations. Note that, according to the Federal Labor Standards Act (FLSA), the University must pay employees for all time worked and can be penalized for incorrect classification and failure to pay for unauthorized time worked.

It is the responsibility of the manager to communicate to employees when overtime is and is not appropriate. It is the responsibility of the employee to follow managerial guidance and to work overtime only when it is approved by his or her manager.

Reclassification of a Position

During the normal course of operations, changes in primary position responsibilities may make it necessary to rewrite or update staff position descriptions. If a position has changed substantially, the position description should be rewritten and submitted to Human Resources for review.

Staff positions are reclassified only when formal review by Human Resources determines that the zone of the position should be changed upward or downward.

The following are examples of situations that may warrant a position reclassification:

  • Department reorganization and position restructuring
  • Addition of significant new area(s) of responsibility
  • Major change in level of authority and accountability

It is essential to distinguish between a change in the position content for an employee and a change in the employee’s skills, knowledge, or performance. A change to how work is done (e.g., changes to the tools or processes used to perform duties) does not normally warrant a position reclassification or pay adjustment. While such a change may require training to learn new software or methods, it does not usually change the purpose or overall accountabilities of the position.

Small changes in a position also do not influence market value or the position's core role at the University and therefore would not warrant reclassification (e.g., procedural changes to existing work, responsibility for overseeing student workers). In addition, a position would not be reclassified if the incumbent earns a degree or achieves another educational milestone, unless this results in changes in the position, level of authority, scope of responsibility, etc.

Once a position has been reclassified, refer to the "Setting Starting Salaries" section to determine the appropriate employee salary position within the zone.

Requests for reclassification should be made during the time period pre-designated by Human Resources and by the manager to whom the position reports.