Title and Total Compensation study develops key framework

January 30, 2018

UW-Madison’s Title and Total Compensation Study, a joint project with UW System, has developed a proposed framework that would sort the university’s jobs into 24 families, as well as sub-families.

The framework categorizes all jobs by level, and it identifies career paths for each job type. It’s expected to lead to the development of market-informed titles and pay scales.

‘The framework will help employees make better choices and provide more options about career advancement at the university,’ says Mary Luther, Title and Total Compensation Study Director.

This has been a highly collaborative effort. Twenty teams developed the job families and sub-families, with the help of input from more than 3,700 employees at forums held throughout the fall.

“The team members and leaders of the 20 job family teams provided incredible passion, devotion, insight, and willingness to collaborate,” Luther says. “It was inspiring to have a front-row seat to witness the beautiful work accomplished.”

UW–Madison’s work was combined with the efforts of UW System to create the job framework now available for review at the Title and Total Compensation Study website.

Photo: Wayne Guthrie

Wayne Guthrie

“Employees were able to provide key information on how specific functions fit into the overall mission of UW–Madison, and that helped us shape the job families in a logical way,” says Associate Vice Chancellor-Human Resources Wayne Guthrie. “It was good to see such widespread interest in this project, which should benefit all employees.”

The proposed Job Framework (diagram) provides an overall organization of jobs for purposes of salary and career progression. Components include:

  • Job families group jobs together involving similar types of work and requiring similar training, skills, knowledge and expertise. For instance, Academic Services and Student Experience is one job family, and Teaching and Learning is another.
  • The sub-family is a subset of a job family and describes a specialized function, such as Career Services.
  • A career path is a career type characterized by unique responsibilities. The proposed Job Framework includes two career paths: Organizational Contributor and Manager (significant people-management and/or functional responsibility).
  • The levels and level descriptions describe the impact, complexity, and independence involved in the job and the experience and knowledge needed to perform the work.

Because job families and sub-families cross boundaries between schools, colleges and divisions, the framework provides employees with a way to advance more effectively in their careers.

When new job opportunities become available on campus, employees will understand how the new position relates to their current job family, sub-family, career path and level.

Next up is a formal review by academic staff and university staff governance and continued campus vetting to include a review by human resource professionals and additional stakeholder groups.

The vetting process will conclude in February, when the finalized job framework will be considered for approval to the Title and Total Compensation Executive Sponsors: Chancellor Rebecca Blank, Provost Sarah Mangelsdorf, and Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration Laurent Heller.

In February and March, Human Resources professionals will work with subject matter experts to develop standard job descriptions. In April, employees will begin work with managers to develop and review job descriptions that will result in the placement of employee jobs into the job framework.

“The results of the Title and Total Compensation Study will help UW–Madison sustain and grow its outstanding workforce,” Guthrie says. “An outstanding workforce allows the university to fulfill its vision as a model public university in the 21st century, serving as a resource to the public and working to enhance the quality of life in the state, the nation, and the world.”

The study is rooted in the university’s strategic framework to “ensure our ability to attract and retain talent by making progress toward competitive compensation relative to our peers and market medians.”

The Title and Total Compensation Study is expected to be completed in March 2019.