FAQ: Pay for Perfomance - Merit

Why Pay for Performance for our policy covered staff?
In 2014, President Napolitano mandated implementation of a merit-based pay for performance model for all locations effective in FY 2016-2017. “Recognizing and rewarding outstanding performance and differentiated pay practices based on employees’ accomplishments will help motivate people to achieve superior results. Superior performance is difficult to achieve when everyone receives the same increase in compensation regardless of their contribution. The merit-based approach is also consistent with feedback we received from staff in the most recent Engagement Survey. Employee feedback urged us to make pay for performance a more prominent feature in our salary programs.” Chancellor Katehi echoed this desire and is committed to an ongoing and sustainable compensation/performance based merit program for non-represented staff.

Will Pay for Performance be implemented for union covered staff in the future?
We do not have a definitive answer at this time.  Pay for performance constitutes a condition of employment.  All terms and conditions of employment are subject to collective bargaining with the various unions before implementation.

How does the salary program for represented employee compare and/or contrast with the salary program for non-represented employees?
Salary programs for represented employees are established by contract with labor unions. Salary programs for non-represented employees are initiated with guidance from the University of California Office of the President.

What are the obstacles for incorporating merit based pay to represented employees?
Represented employees are subject to contracts negotiated between labor unions and the University of California Office of the President. Any changes to wages or working conditions must be negotiated and agreed to by contract.

Is Pay for Performance an equity program?
Pay for Performance is intended to reward staff based on their performance. Merits assigned under this program, should not take into account longevity or equity concerns.

Does Pay for Performance also include a cost of living adjustment (COLA)?
The University’s salary program for non-represented employees is merit/performance based and does not consider cost of living.

If the merit pool is 3% does that mean all employees will receive at least that amount?
In a pay for performance program there is variation in merit amounts among employees. Some employees may receive more than 3%, and some may receive less than 3%.

Are managers/supervisors required to calibrate staff performance?
The following principles have been provided regarding calibration:

  • Within each school, college or division, an individual or group of individuals at the leadership level takes responsibility for coordinating and communicating the calibration and merit distribution process
  • Supervisors and managers within that school, college or division are directly engaged/involved with the calibration process
  • Supervisors and managers are informed about the merit application process outcomes prior to communication with individual employees