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In accordance with the Department of Human Resources Management (DHRM), James Madison University adopts the following Salary Administration Plan (SAP). This plan specifies how the university will implement the job evaluation, compensation and performance management components of the Commonwealth's Compensation Management System. It is intended that the Salary Administration Plan serve as the foundation for ensuring consistent application of pay administration decisions and help avoid employee disputes.

Except where noted, this plan applies only to full time, classified employees.


  • James Madison University employees are our most valuable resource and are full partners in achieving our mission.
  • We believe that compensation is a key element in recruiting, retaining, motivating and rewarding a qualified, committed and diverse workforce necessary to fulfill the university's goals and objectives.
  • An individual's pay is influenced by external labor markets, internal equity concerns, employee performance, the availability of the university's financial resources, and other pay factors.
  • James Madison University supports every employee through training, development, and encouragement, and expects each individual to meet or exceed the performance standards established for his/her role.


The effective date for initial implementation of the Commonwealth's Compensation Management System was September 25, 2000. JMU's Salary Administration Plan was first effective October 1, 2000. This version was updated June 2004.


James Madison University's compensation philosophy is to pay employees in a manner sufficient to recruit and retain a high performance workforce that provides quality service in a fiscally responsible manner to the university community and ultimately to the citizens of Virginia. Underlying this philosophy are the following principles:

  • To establish base pay that is competitive with the labor market;
  • To encourage employees to make a performance difference where results/outcomes are more important than entitlements (e.g., seniority, hierarchy or expectation of additional pay for changing responsibilities);
  • To provide salary increases that focus on employees gaining demonstrable skills and competencies that are critical to the accomplishment of the university and/or work unit missions;
  • To focus on the value of total compensation, which includes salary and non-salary benefits such as healthcare, retirement, life insurance, disability insurance, annual and sick leave.

The university will administer its compensation program in a manner consistent with the mission, goals, and business objectives of JMU. The university's Salary Administration Plan will:

  • Assure that comparable jobs are valued with similar methodology and assigned to the same role;
  • Promote employee focus on university and work unit missions and outcomes;
  • Be market responsive and fiscally responsible;
  • Be administratively efficient and responsive to organizational changes;
  • Be easily understood and communicated;
  • Recruit and retain qualified employees;
  • Motivate employees by rewarding sustained high performance;
  • Support management in the realization of organizational objectives.

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