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CWC making changes to salary review process

Nov 4, 2013 - By Katie Roenigk, Staff Writer

Faculty and staff at Central Wyoming College said they are pleased the school included them in an organization-wide compensation and classification study initiated this semester.

"This may be one of the first times we've been able to level all of the associations, all of the employees, at the same time," faculty president Matt Herr said during a CWC Board of Trustees meeting. "That's huge."

In the past, administrators have examined salaries on a rotation, considering pay for classified staff, faculty, and professional staff during separate years. Jennifer Rey, CWC's executive director for human resources, said the cyclical process has led to some "pay equity challenges" due to changes in the marketplace.

"Over the last five to seven years, at any one point two-thirds of our population feels like they're not current with the market," she said.

Herr said combining the three studies into one should address any perceived pay inequities.

"I think having things on an even footing will be an important benchmark," he said.

Connie Nyberg, president of CWC's professional personnel association, said her group is hopeful about the outcomes of the study.

"We talked many times about the professional staff's concern about our particular group's salaries and where we feel that we are," she told the CWC Board of Trustees. "We're cautiously optimistic that we can get those (salaries) to a good level."

Rey said her department has issued a request for proposals from compensation consultants who could assist with this year's study. She anticipates hearing back from qualified groups by November, and by March she should have a proposal to take to the trustees. Changes to compensation will be considered during budget discussions next year.

Pay compression

The compensation study also should help to slow "pay compression" at CWC. Rey said the gap between salaries for new hires and veteran employees at the school is becoming too small.

"When we bring external candidates in, the qualifications we're seeing are demanding a higher rate (of pay)," Rey explained. "They may come in (at) a rate that someone with comparable skills in the organization is not yet earning. ... That's a pay compression challenge."

Finally, she said the review will look at the possibility of a monetary reward to recognize employees' educational advancement efforts.

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