Faculty and Staff - November 23, 2021

Dear Colleagues: ​  
I am very pleased to follow up on our commitment to move forward with the implementation of a plan associated with the Classification and Pay Study.  Below are details regarding the five-year plan and how we intend to move forward.  There are many details to cover, so please be sure to read this entire communication.

As you may be aware, Winthrop began this study in late 2018/early 2019 with our partners at then Sibson, now called Segal. The primary goal of the study remains the same--to review employee job classifications, compensation, and pay practices to ensure alignment with the competitive market. 

Project objectives include:

·   Reviewing and making necessary adjustments to current job classifications to ensure that actual job duties (rather than job titles alone) are taken into consideration when comparing salaries;

·   Developing an overarching compensation program that is market competitive, fair, and ensures internal equity;

·   Creating a comprehensive compensation philosophy that includes positioning of salaries to a newly defined market; and,

·   Communicating a plan for implementing new compensation practices, reporting, and ongoing salary administration maintenance.

The study was put on hold in early 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, just prior to implementation. In fall 2021, we worked with Segal to update the study to reflect updated employee data and competitive survey market data in preparation for implementation.  

What’s happening now?

·   As previously shared, implementation is a multi-year process and includes both financial and non-financial aspects.  The initial five-year plan will result in employee salary increases totaling $2.4M, which includes benefits costs. The plan will not result in any salary decreases for any faculty or staff members.

·   During Year 1 (current fiscal year) of the implementation plan, $400,000 is allocated to annual personnel costs to address competitive pay, and salary adjustments for Year 1 will take place in December.  50% of the allocation will be distributed to faculty employees, and 50% will be distributed to staff employees.  

·   Individual emails will be sent no later than Wednesday, November 24, for staff employees who will receive pay increases on December 1 and no later than Thursday, December 9, for faculty who will receive pay increases on December 16.

·   We understand there will be much curiosity from employees about how, if at all, the implementation plan will affect them. Some employees may receive adjustments in all five years, some will receive adjustments in some of the years, and some will not receive adjustments associated with the plan.  The five-year plan is designed to address the salaries of employees identified by our Segal partners to have a gap to the market and/or salary structure for their position. Therefore, those with the largest gaps are being addressed first. 

·   Information about who will receive adjustments in years 2 through 5 will not be available until the employee and market data are updated each year.  The target date for implementation in years 2 through 5 will be October 1.

·   We are working on plans to schedule an employee town hall for early 2022 to provide more detail on the outcomes of the study.  Specific information regarding new salary structures and pay guidelines for faculty and staff will be published prior to the town hall. Please hold your questions until you receive an invitation to attend the town hall and instructions on submitting inquiries. Your questions will be shared with our Segal partners to address in their portion of the town hall.  

·   It is important to note that the five-year period of adjustments alone will not result in moving all employees to the minimum of the market and/or salary structure for their position based on the employee and market data we have now.  The funding allowance is simply not sufficient to get us to that point during the five-year period.  The plan will result in more employees being paid competitively, and provide updated compensation practices and salary administration maintenance that will positively affect salary-related decisions that occur moving forward.  At the end of the five years, we will reassess the employee and market data available at that time to determine the level of competitive pay and whether additional pay adjustment consideration is warranted.

·   Additionally, to further address staff compensation and retention in targeted areas of concern, the starting pay for certain Facilities Management (custodial and grounds in FTE positions) and Campus Police (officer, sergeant, parking enforcement, and dispatcher in FTE positions) employees will be increased effective January 1.  Current employee salaries will be adjusted as appropriate to ensure that the pay of current employees is at least equivalent to the new hiring minimum. 

Once again, I thank you for your patience. The implementation of the resulting plan associated with the Classification and Pay Study has been a long time coming.   I am happy we are finally taking this important first step forward to address a much-needed competitive salary structure that will help ensure alignment of Winthrop positions with the competitive market over time.



George W. Hynd

Interim President