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VI. PAY PRACTICES

In determining salaries, university management MUST consider the following pay determination factors:

  • Agency Business Need
  • Market Availability
  • Duties and Responsibilities
  • Salary Reference Data
  • Performance
  • Total Compensation
  • Work Experience and Education
  • Budget Implications
  • Knowledge, Skills, Abilities and Competencies
  • Long Term Impact
  • Training, Certification and Licensure
  • Current Salary
  • Internal Salary Alignment

These pay factors are defined in the Human Resource Management Manual, which is available from Human Resources. Listed below are the pay actions that can occur under this Plan. These practices apply both to full-time classified employees as well as wage (part-time) employees except where noted and with the attendant qualifications. For each of the pay practices noted, departments must process a Personnel Action Request form (PAR) and a Pay Action Worksheet (PAW). (View forms page) Managers and supervisors must obtain the appropriate signatures on these documents and submit them to Human Resources.

A. Pay Practices

An employee's salary may not fall below the minimum or above the maximum of the pay band as a result of a pay practice to be implemented. (The only exception to this is the six-month period of time in which a person who has undergone a voluntary demotion may be paid above the maximum of the pay band.) In addition, when filling positions through such pay practices as Starting Pay, Promotion, Lateral Transfer, etc., the employee may not be paid more than the amount budgeted for the position without written authorization from the appropriate Division Head.

Pay practices that relate to a classified employee moving from one position to another (promotion, voluntary transfer, demotion, etc.) include classified employees who are hired into a JMU classified position directly from another classified position at any other state agency.

  1. Starting Pay:

    Starting pay is the starting salary for an individual not currently employed by the university.

    The hiring department has the flexibility to offer a starting salary up to 10% above the individual's current salary. Any starting salary exceeding 10% above current salary must fall within the amount budgeted for the position, be reviewed by Human Resources and must be approved by the appropriate division head BEFORE an offer is made.

    The hiring supervisor must work with Human Resources to determine the appropriate starting pay in accordance with the university's Salary Administration Plan. Once a starting salary has been determined, the hiring supervisor must obtain the appropriate approvals BEFORE making an offer or communicating potential salary figures to the job candidate.

  2. Promotion:

    Promotion is the movement of an employee to a different position in a higher pay band. This movement is the result of the employee applying for and being awarded the position through the recruitment and selection process.

    The employee's salary can increase between 0% and 15% of his/her current salary.

    The hiring supervisor should work with Human Resources to determine the appropriate promotional increase (if any) in accordance with the university’s Salary Administration Plan before the offer is made or potential pay is discussed with the candidate. Once an increase has been determined, the hiring supervisor must obtain the appropriate approvals.

    In rare cases, the university also may approve exceptional promotional increases above 15% as long as the resulting salary is within the new pay band and advertised hiring range and the action is supported by the pay factors. The university will provide the Virginia Department of Human Resource Management with documentation for any such exception by entering the data into the Personnel Management Information System.

  3. Voluntary Transfers:

    A voluntary transfer is employee-initiated movement to another position in the same or different role in the same pay band. The employee may seek the transfer through the recruitment and selection process or through a non-competitive process.

    In the event the transfer is lateral (same or equivalent role in the same pay band), the employee will usually receive no increase in base pay. However, since positions vary in terms of complexity, accountability, and responsibility and with some positions having a greater increase in these areas than others, a change in compensation may be justified as follows:

    Voluntary Lateral Transfer- (Competitive Process)

    • An employee's salary is negotiable from 0-10% or up to 15% with appropriate division head approval. The increase cannot exceed the pay band maximum.
    • If the new position has lower level duties and responsibilities, the employee's salary will be reduced by a minimum of 5%. Salary reductions greater than 5% are permitted with the prior approval of the appropriate division head and Human Resources.

    Voluntary Lateral Transfer - (Non-competitive Process)

    • In a non-competitive lateral transfer, an employee transferring to the same role in the same pay band is not eligible for a pay increase.
    • If the new position has lower level duties and responsibilities, the employee's salary will be reduced by a minimum of 5%. Salary reductions greater than 5% are permitted with the prior approval of the appropriate division head and Human Resources.

    Hiring departments should work with Human Resources to determine the appropriate salary in accordance with this Plan. Once a salary has been determined, the hiring supervisor must obtain the appropriate approvals.

    It is the role of Human Resources to determine if the difference in complexity, accountability, and responsibility between the previous position and the new position is significant enough to warrant a pay increase or decrease. Salary changes, if any, are dependent upon Human Resources findings and evaluations in accordance with the appropriate JMU and state compensation policies and procedures and include the pay factors listed above.

    The hiring supervisor must submit the appropriate Pay Action Request (PAR), Pay Action Worksheet (PAW), Employee Work Profile (EWP) and any other information HR needs to determine position or pay practices.

  4. Voluntary Demotions:

    A voluntary demotion occurs when an employee voluntarily moves to a different role in a lower pay band through the recruitment and selection process or through non-competitive means. The employee's salary will be reduced a minimum of 5%. Salary reductions greater than 5% are permitted with the prior approval of the appropriate vice president and Human Resources.

  5. Temporary Pay (different Role in higher pay band) or Temporary Pay (different Role in same pay band):

    Temporary pay can be provided to an employee who experiences a change in job duties and responsibilities for a specified period (i.e., assignment to a special project, reassignment during organizational changes, etc.). Temporary pay is not intended to cover brief recruitment periods. Temporary pay must be approved by the appropriate division head in advance.

    Temporary Pay may be issued for up to 15% of an employee's salary when that employee assumes temporary duties in a higher pay band and up to 10% of an employee's salary when that employee assumes temporary duties in the same pay band.

    Supervisors should work with Human Resources to determine the appropriate amount of temporary pay in accordance with this Plan. Supervisors must complete a Pay Action Worksheet (PAW) and submit it to HR. Once the amount has been determined, the supervisor is responsible for obtaining appropriate approvals. After approvals have been received, the supervisor may then discuss pay issues with the employee.

    Temporary pay may continue for up to six months. For periods beyond six months, the appropriate vice president may approve an extension.

  6. Role Change:

    A role change occurs when an employee remains in his/her current position but the role changes. The change can be upward, downward, or lateral. Lateral role changes will not result in any salary increases if the new role is in a position whose fundamental duties and responsibilities are essentially equivalent to the previous role.

    Human Resources is responsible for conducting studies and making recommendations and/or final determinations regarding individual role changes and university-wide position studies. Increases provided as the result of an upward role change will be determined based on available funding through the annual budget development process. When an upward role change is approved, any funds for providing an attendant pay increase will come from the university's Central Funding Pool and will normally be considered during the spring and fall in-band adjustment periods if funding is made available. In making decisions regarding the allocation of funding, the following priority structure will be used:

    1. Employees who would be paid below the minimum of their pay band without salary relief
    2. Role Changes
    3. In-band Adjustments

    Supervisors may submit applications for role changes to Human Resources at any time.

  7. In-band Adjustments:

    An in-band adjustment is an adjustment to an employee's base salary due to:

    • A change in job duties and responsibilities
    • Application of new skills and competencies from education, certifications, licensures
    • Retention (i.e., responding to salary market changes, labor market fluctuations, etc.)
    • Internal alignment, salary compression and other internal inequities

    In-band adjustments for non-probationary full-time classified employees will be done in accordance with a schedule to be determined by the division heads, working in concert with the Budget Office. Human Resources will evaluate each request based on the pay factors, and make final recommendations to each division head. A Pay Action Worksheet will be required for each in-band adjustment request.

    Human Resources will work closely with each division head when determining in-band adjustments. Increases provided as the result of an in-band adjustment will be determined based on available funding through the annual budget development process.

    An employee may not receive more than a 10% total salary increase through the in-band adjustment process in any fiscal year (to include increases given for lateral role change and in-band bonuses).

    Optimally, there will be two in-band adjustment periods per year - in the spring and fall. However, this is strictly dependent on funding. In-band adjustments will not be awarded unless the university allocates a Central Funding Pool. When and if funds are made available, Human Resources will normally process in-band adjustment requests in the spring and fall. All in-band adjustments must be awarded from the university Central Funding Pool. (See four exceptions below)

    In making decisions regarding the allocation of funding, the following priority structure will be used:

    1. Employees who would be paid below the minimum of their pay band without salary relief
    2. Role Changes
    3. In-band Adjustments

    Supervisors may submit applications for in-band adjustments to Human Resources at any time during the year.

    Supervisors should NOT communicate to the employee that an in-band adjustment request has been made until that request has been approved.

    Exceptions to the policy that all in-band adjustments must be awarded only from the university's Central Funding Pool:

    1. In-band adjustments for wage employees must be funded directly and exclusively by the department's own budget (not from the Central Funding Pool) and must be approved by Human Resources. To qualify to receive an in-band adjustment, a wage employee must have 12 months of continuous employment at the university, must have worked a total of at least 1500 hours and at least 1250 hours in the previous 12 months. Wage employee in-band adjustments will be determined on the same schedule as classified in-band adjustments.
    2. Grant-funded positions are eligible for in-band adjustments following the same schedule as all other classified and wage positions. However, in-band adjustments for grant-funded positions must be funded by the department's own budget, not from the Central Funding Pool.
    3. When conducting salary studies and, as a result, applying multiple salary adjustments, resulting in-band adjustments can be funded by the particular department and not necessarily by the Central Funding Pool.
    4. When a department has a position vacated, and that department abolishes that position and subsequently transfers some or all of the duties from that position to another employee or other employees, the department may use the funds made available from the abolished position to provide an In-band Adjustment or Role Change (whichever is deemed applicable by Human Resources) for the employee(s) to whom new duties have been added. This exception may be used at any time during the year without regard to the normal spring and fall IBA phases. Funds for the IBA or Role Change in this case will come from the department's own budget (made available by the vacant position).

    The procedure to access this exception is as follows:

    1. Notify the appropriate division head of the intent to abolish the position and to request an IBA or Role Change for the particular employee or employees who are being given additional duties. This notification should be copied to the department's Human Resources Representative and to the Budget Office.
    2. Consult with the appropriate Human Resources Representative to determine whether an IBA-change in duties or Role Change is the most appropriate pay action to consider. Also, discuss a reasonable percentage of increase for the employee or employees affected.
    3. Write (a) new Employee Work Profile(s) to include the duties that will be added to the employee(s).
    4. Submit the new EWP, along with the fully completed PAR and PAW forms, to the Human Resources representative with the requested percentage increase.
    5. Human Resources will review the request(s) and submit a proposal to the appropriate division head.
    6. Once the division head reviews the proposal, he or she will make a final determination and, if approving, will sign the PAR form(s) to execute the action(s).

    Stipulations:

    • It is important that the supervisor not communicate specifics about pay increases to the employee(s) until this process is complete.
    • When using this exception, departments may not transfer duties from the recently abolished position to a second previously vacated position and then fill that second vacated position. All duties from the position being abolished either must be eliminated from the department's tasks or be transferred to existing employees.
    • This policy applies only to full-time, classified employees.
    • The department may only expend the funds that have been made available by the abolition of the position and should be careful not to go over that amount in the awarding of related IBA's or Role Changes.
  8. Disciplinary or Performance Related Salary Action:
  9. Under the Standards of Conduct policy, an employee's job duties and responsibilities may be reduced because of improper conduct or poor performance. This reduction in job duties may result in the employee moving within the same pay band, to a lower pay band, or to the same or different position. In either case, the employee's salary must be reduced a minimum of 5%. If movement is within the same pay band, the employee's salary cannot be reduced below the band minimum. If movement is to a lower pay band, the employee's reduced salary cannot exceed the maximum of the lower band. Supervisors should work with Human Resources to determine the appropriate salary reduction in accordance with this Plan.

    Salary reductions greater than 5% are permitted with the prior approval of the appropriate vice president and Human Resources.

Competitive Salary Offer:

Competitive salary offers must always be in writing. This pay practice may not be used when a JMU classified employee is made an offer to accept another position at JMU.

Occasionally, the need arises to make a competitive salary offer in order to retain mission-critical employees. Whether or not a particular individual is critical to the work unit's mission is based on management's evaluation of the following: the specific knowledge, skills and abilities the particular employee brings to the job; specialized training and/or licensure which the employee has obtained and is critical to the work tasks and duties; the unavailability of specialized skills in the current labor market; excessive turnover in the position; or other factors as identified by the department.

Supervisors should work with Human Resources to determine the appropriate salary in accordance with this Plan. A Pay Action Worksheet must be submitted to HR before a competitive salary offer. Once a salary has been determined, the supervisor must obtain the appropriate approvals. Supervisors should not discuss terms or possibilities of pay until speaking with a representative of Human Resources.

Offer from Non-state Agency
The employee's salary can increase to match the outside offer not to exceed the maximum of the pay band. The appropriate vice president must approve competitive salary offers before the offer is extended.

Offer from State Agency
The employee's salary cannot exceed the exact amount of the job offer from the other agency or the maximum of the pay band. The appropriate division head must approve competitive salary offers before the offer is extended. The state agency making the initial offer may not make a SECOND offer, once the employing agency has countered.

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