As outlined in the Objectives, the staff compensation program is designed to promote both internal and external equity. A key tool for meeting those objectives is the grouping of jobs into 4 “Career Bands” with 13 “Career Levels” that broadly define the type and nature of work performed throughout the organization. The Band/Level structure provides a mechanism for measuring internal equity and, once implemented, functions as a framework for supporting career progression. External job market data is used to develop and maintain externally competitive salary ranges for each Band and Level; in this way the structure helps manage external equity as well.
This section contains information on:
The foundation of our staff compensation program is accurate and complete job descriptions; the responsibility for the creation and maintenance of job descriptions is shared between the manager, the employee, and Human Resources. Employees and managers are responsible for periodically reviewing and updating descriptions to reflect current responsibilities. Human Resources is responsible for ensuring: the consistency of descriptions, appropriateness of titles as well as required education and experience, and compliance with regulations such as the Americans with Disabilities Act.
Job descriptions are used as the basis for job evaluation, which, in our staff compensation program, involves utilizing job content to group jobs into 4 “Career Bands” and 13 “Career Levels” that make up our pay range structures. This is accomplished using tools called Career Band Definitions and Job Content Framework (available on the HR Website). Briefly:
Career Bands – group similar jobs based on the type/nature of the work:
- Administrator – primary focus is on setting the strategic direction of the College/Institute.
- Management-primary focus is on managing employees and/or a department.
- Specialist-primary focus is on applying professional, or highly-skilled technical or specialized knowledge requiring specific and specialized training or education.
- Operations-primary focus is on providing administrative, customer service, mechanical, or technical support.
Career Levels – group jobs into tiers within a Band based on level of responsibility/requirements in the following areas:
- Scope of Responsibility
- Problem Complexity
- Influencing/People Leadership
- Organizational Knowledge
- Minimum Required Background/Experience
Job evaluations are regularly completed when new jobs are created (as part of the position request (SRC) process). Jobs are also reevaluated when there have been significant changes in requirements or expectations. Jobs reviewed for appropriate Band/Level classification may maintain the same Band/Level or they may be re-classified to a higher or lower Band/Level. Human Resources is responsible for evaluating the correct placement of jobs within the compensation structure, taking into consideration input from the area manager(s) and (as applicable) employees. A key point is that even numerous changes in the specific duties or tasks assigned to a job may not necessarily warrant a change in Band/Level. Changes in Band/Level result from substantial increases or decreases in either: the type/nature of the work (a Band change), and/or in the amount/significance of responsibility assigned (a Level change). For example, a job that originally involved filing paper documents in cabinets might evolve into a job in which documents are scanned and saved electronically. While the specific tasks performed would be completely different (scanning versus filing documents) the job would still be an entry-level clerical job and so the new description would be unlikely to result in a Band/Level change. If, however, with the change from paper to electronic filing new responsibilities such as data analysis and supervision of other clerks are added, such a change would likely result in a change to the assigned Band/Level.
An important point to remember is that jobs are not reviewed according to the qualifications of the employee that happens to currently hold the job; evaluations are based on the job requirements and these may differ from the qualifications of the current incumbent. For example, in a situation in which the current incumbent happens to hold a Master’s Degree, but the job requires only a Bachelors Degree, it is the Bachelors degree that will be factored into the job evaluation.
Each Band/Level combination in our system is assigned a specific salary range, based on the average market rate of the benchmark jobs assigned to that Band/Level through the Job Evaluation process. Benchmark jobs are jobs within each Band/Level that can be readily compared to the job market in terms of common characteristics, and for which market data is readily available in published market surveys. Salary ranges take into account geographic location and special market considerations. Current pay ranges structures are posted on the HR websites.
Middlebury Campus-Based Programs: The standard Middlebury College pay range structure (“A” ranges) applies to most staff jobs at the undergraduate College and other College-based programs such as Bread Loaf, IPOCs, etc. A select group of staff jobs with unique salary considerations are slotted in an alternate structure (“B” ranges).
MIIS Campus-Based Programs: The standard MIIS structure (“C” ranges) is tied to MIIS- specific jobs as well as the local geographic and MIIS’s competitive salary market. A select group of MIIS staff jobs with unique salary considerations may be slotted in an alternate structure (“D” ranges) that is tied to specific and unique salary considerations as well as MIIS’s specific salary market.
Currently the data on the external markets for benchmarked jobs is determined as follows:
- For the “A” and “B” ranges the external market job is measured against data collected from two primary sources – The College and University Personnel Associates (CUPA) salary surveys (for higher education related jobs) using New England and national cuts and from the New England Salary Survey (for non-higher-ed-specific jobs). Additional market information may be collected from other sources when data from primary sources is not available (generally only for highly specialized or technical jobs).
- For the “C” and “D” ranges the data is collected from The College and University Personnel Associates (CUPA) salary surveys (for higher education related jobs) using California and national cuts as well other CA specific salary survey for non-higher-ed-specific jobs.
- Compensation data collected is based on the local, regional, and/or national markets, as appropriate for specific jobs (local salary market information is generally collected for jobs for which we recruit locally, national market information is collected on jobs for which we recruit nationally, etc.).
- Salary surveys are conducted on a regular basis (generally annually) in order to consistently gauge our current position relative to the external market.
Each level within a pay structure has a stated salary range minimum, midpoint, and maximum. These salary ranges are broad and overlapping to accommodate the market(s) for the varying jobs within each range.
Generally all employees’ salaries are expected to be within their assigned salary ranges:
- No employee will be paid below the minimum of the pay range assigned to his or her job unless the employee does not meet the minimum requirements of the job and is temporarily in a “trainee” status. Also, employees with current and documented performance issues may not be eligible for increases when the salary structure moves, and so may be below minimum.
- When a salary market review results in the structure moving to keep alignment with the desired market position, employees whose current salaries fall below the new minimum of their salary ranges will generally be moved to the new minimums (see exceptions above); employees whose current salaries fall within the new ranges are not adjusted.
- It is important to emphasize that salary levels will not be “capped” or “frozen” even if an individual reaches the top of a Salary Range. There are situations in which staff members’ salaries exceed the maximum of the range; these employees will continue to be eligible for merit increases based on performance.
An individual’s position within a salary range is based on a combination of factors, especially: previous education, training, and experience, time in current job, and performance over time. It is expected that as a result of solid performance, employees will progress through their pay ranges over time.