UW–Madison will provide pay adjustments to faculty and staff

January 18, 2018 By Marilyn Gardner

Photo: State Capitol as seen from Bascom HillThe University of Wisconsin–Madison has announced that the 2017–2019 pay plan will be distributed to faculty and staff with increases totaling 4 percent. Under the 2017–2019 state biennial budget, UW–Madison was provided with the authority and funding to proceed with these general pay increases. However, the state’s legislative Joint Committee on Employment Relations still needs to formally approve the funding and authority.

The four percent increase will be phased in, with the first 2 percent increase taking effect in July 2018 and the second 2 percent in January of 2019 (specific effective dates depend on employment group). To be eligible to receive the increases, individuals must have been employed in their current positions by Jan. 8, 2018, and must be meeting performance expectations as identified in their last performance evaluations.

“We are happy to be able to provide meaningful pay increases for our dedicated faculty and staff,” says Chancellor Rebecca Blank. “For some time now, the state pay plan has not provided an opportunity to increase compensation, even as the cost of employee benefits and other living expenses have risen. These pay increases will help us meet our goal of retaining the talented individuals we have working at UW–Madison.”

Photo: Rebecca Blank

Rebecca Blank

Photo: Laurent Heller

Laurent Heller

Also, although not under the pay plan authority, UW–Madison will be funding additional increases for employees in the University Staff category making less than $15 per hour, beginning with hours worked on Jan. 21, 2018. Any employee designated as University Staff who earns less than $15 per hour will receive an increase of up to 50 cents per hour, for a total pay rate not to exceed $15 per hour. For example, an employee who earns $14.75 per hour would receive an increase of 25 cents, while an employee currently earning $14.50 would receive 50 cents.

This is the latest in a series of increases designed to benefit some of UW–Madison’s lowest-paid workers. Other recent compensation changes affecting University Staff included an increase in the living wage standard to $13.01 per hour beginning Dec. 24, 2017, and an increase in the differential pay for employees working night and weekend shifts. The differential increased from 45 cents per hour to 80 cents per hour for night employees and from 60 cents per hour to 80 cents per hour for weekend employees, effective Nov. 12, 2017.

UW–Madison follows the City of Madison living wage standard, which is equal to 110 percent of the federal poverty level for a family of four, in determining the living wage.

“The university is committed to paying a fair wage to all employees,” Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration Laurent Heller says. “The newly announced increases for those making less than $15 per hour, combined with the increase in the living wage standard, are responses to some of the most pressing compensation needs on campus.”

UW-Madison also came to a tentative collective bargaining agreement with the campus Building Trades employees. The Building Trades are the only certified bargaining unit on campus. Under state law, the union can only bargain over wages up to the Consumer Price Index (CPI). The tentative agreement calls for trades employees to receive a 1.26% (2017 CPI) wage increase effective July 1, 2017. The legislative Joint Committee on Employment Relations has to approve the contract before it can go into effect.