Faculty Compensation and Classification
Initial Hire Salary
Initial faculty salaries are determined based on a combination of factors, including the funding available for the position, the academic discipline, faculty rank at the time of appointment, highest degree earned, the job description, professional experience, market value, and the needs of the department and college. Upon the recommendation of the chair and dean, the provost approves all faculty salaries prior to hiring.
Faculty salaries are normally budgeted for a nine-month period. Faculty members are compensated on the basis of a fair and reasonable workload.
Salary increases for faculty at SFA can occur through merit increases, equity adjustments and promotions, subject to the availability of funds.
Merit increases are awarded on an annual basis based on the recommendation of the academic unit head. Merit recommendations by the academic unit head are subject to approval by the dean, provost and vice president for academic affairs, and president.
For merit pay consideration, full-time faculty members (excluding adjuncts) must present to their academic unit head all relevant or requested documentation, including the completed annual report of professional activities and performance, as well as any other information required under individual academic unit, college or university policy. Quality teaching, research, scholarly/creative activity, administrative responsibilities and service may be considered in the merit process. Academic units and/or colleges will establish their own appropriate and specific merit criteria and awarding procedures.
Equity adjustments may be awarded based on the recommendations of the academic unit head and dean, subject to the approval of the provost and vice president of academic affairs.
Faculty members, through the promotion process, are awarded salary increases in the subsequent budget year based on budgeted resources and the promotion rank.
Academic promotion is awarded when a candidate successfully demonstrates meeting or exceeding performance standards in teaching, research/scholarly/creative accomplishments and service as established by the academic unit. Academic promotion will normally be restricted to full-time faculty members who have earned the highest academic degree customarily awarded in their field of study.
Faculty members may be eligible for various types of extra compensation:
- Additional Services: Faculty members who perform work outside of normal working hours that is clearly in addition to regularly assigned duties, such as interdepartmental consulting, short-term, incidental activities on grants, casual/seasonal work, or SFA 101 instruction, may be eligible to receive additional compensation payment(s) in addition to the base appointment salary. Additional compensation is subject to a cap equal to 25% of the base appointment salary.
- Overload Assignments: Faculty members who teach an overload or perform administrative duties in support of the department/college in addition to a full teaching load may be eligible for overload compensation. Overload assignments are salary supplements that temporarily augment an employee's base appointment salary.
- Stipends: Faculty members may receive one-time, lump-sum payments in addition to base appointment salary for receiving an award (i.e., the Regents Professor Award or Teaching Excellence Award), preparing and/or teaching online courses, teaching off-campus credit courses, performing at university-sponsored events or as an incentive payment.
- Summer Teaching: Faculty members with academic year appointments (9-month faculty) may be compensated for teaching for credit courses during one or more summer sessions. Normally, faculty members are compensated for summer teaching at a rate of one-sixth of their nine-month base appointment salary for a 100% teaching assignment for each summer session (compensation is prorated for assignments less than two teaching units).
- Summer Research: Faculty members may be compensated to conduct research that is either fully or partially grant-funded during the summer.
- Summer Administration: Faculty members with academic year appointments (nine-month faculty) may be compensated to perform non-teaching, non-research administrative duties in support of the department/college during one or more summer terms.
The Basics of our Staff Compensation and Classification System
Job descriptions provide an overview of a position's essential duties and responsibilities and the minimum required qualifications to perform the job effectively. The descriptions are working documents that are maintained, updated and changed to reflect the actual duties of a position and are broad and sweeping in nature, intended to enable and foster growth of the position.
Job descriptions highlight the most important features of a job in general terms - they may not describe specific duties related to an individual's position. Some departments choose to internally maintain supplemental documentation detailing the specific duties of a given position.
Official university job descriptions can be obtained by contacting Human Resources.
Salary Grade Structures
Salary grade structures are used to identify the minimum and maximum salary range of pay for each position and provide a way to classify and group jobs to ensure that employees are rewarded for the work they do in a consistent way.
SFA uses one combined grade structure to establish compensation limits for jobs. The structure is based on competitive practices and internal equity considerations and provides the possibility for progression to more responsible jobs with higher and broader pay ranges. Jobs are placed into salary grades based on external salary survey information and internal job evaluation; therefore, jobs with a similar value in the external market place and within the university are in the same salary grade.
HR periodically reviews job descriptions and salary ranges to ensure accuracy and competitiveness.
HR sets the education and experience requirements for each position by evaluating the position's duties and responsibilities and then determining the minimum combination of education and experience necessary to perform the job.
HR believes it is the combination of education and experience that allows each employee to be best prepared to perform the duties and responsibilities of his or her position. For many positions, HR allows for additional experience to substitute for required education and also allows additional education to substitute for required experience for some positions.
For additional information, see the SFA Substitution Philosophy.
Initial Hire Salary
Initial salaries vary depending on the value of the job (based on an analysis of internal job relationships and the external market), the employee's experience and skills, and funding considerations. The hiring department, working with guidelines from HR, determines the externally competitive and internally equitable salary for each new employee.
SFA has a combined salary grade structure that is used to identify the minimum and maximum salary range of pay for each position. The hiring range for graded staff positions ranges from the salary grade minimum or 80% of the equity threshold for that position, whichever is greater, to the salary grade midpoint. Initial salaries will generally fall within this hiring range.
Salary increases for staff at SFA can occur through merit increases, equity adjustments and promotions, subject to the availability of funds.
Merit increases are awarded on a semiannual basis to be effective either on Sept. 1 and/or March 1. Merit increases are based on an employee's documented job performance and are intended to reward individual performance, increased productivity, improved quality and/or reduced costs. To be eligible for a merit increase, individuals must be benefits-eligible and must have successfully completed initial probation or have a current performance appraisal with a rating of acceptable or above on file in HR.
HR periodically audits pay rates within classifications to identify potential pay problems and initiates pay equity adjustments, as appropriate. A department head may also initiate a pay equity adjustment when an equity pool is funded as part of the budget process.
Individual equity increases shall be based on one or more of the following:
- Internal equity
- External competitiveness
All equity pay adjustments are subject to review and approval by the appropriate vice president and the HR director.
When an individual is promoted, his or her pay will normally be adjusted to reflect the new level of responsibility. In determining recommended promotional increase amounts, the following factors are considered:
- rates paid to incumbents in the new position, both within hiring college or division and in other colleges and divisions throughout the university
- pay range for the new position and the difference in the number of salary grades between the old position and the new position
- qualifications of the individual versus qualifications of incumbents in the same job in the college or division
- external salary survey data, if it is available
- and change in FLSA designation or overtime designation; i.e., a change from nonexempt job to an exempt job.
A reclassification occurs when a position changes from one classification to another because of changes to job duties and responsibilities. Reclassifications may be lateral or promotional and may not necessarily result in a change in base rate of pay.
Reclassifications are not voluntary - they occur external to the posting process. Reclassifications may result from reorganizations, during which the department reevaluates its organizational structure and redistributes job duties and responsibilities, or as part of the annual budget process.
Longevity Pay and Hazardous Duty Pay
Nonacademic, full-time employees working at least 40 hours a week in one position are entitled to longevity pay in the amount of $20 per month for each two years of state service. When appointments are added together, an eligible employee may be paid longevity pay if the sum of the scheduled work hours in all nonacademic appointments is 40 or more hours. Prior state employment is verified by HR.
Longevity pay is capped at $420 per month. See the Longevity Pay Chart for a listing of pay amounts based on years of service.
SFA Charter School teachers are not eligible for longevity pay.
Hazardous Duty Pay
Commissioned law officers are entitled to hazardous duty pay in lieu of longevity pay. In most cases, the amount of a full-time employee's hazardous duty pay is $10 for each 12-month period of lifetime service credit accrued by the employee.
FLSA Exemption Differences - Overtime and Compensatory Time
As a staff member, whether and how you are compensated for working more than your scheduled hours during a workweek depends on how your position is viewed under the Fair Labor Standards Act. HR determines the exemption status of each position on campus by completing a test based on each position's duties, level of responsibility and decision-making authority, and base pay rate. To learn more about the general distinctions between being exempt and nonexempt at SFA, see the FLSA Exemption Differences PDF.
Staff may be eligible for various types of extra compensation:
- Additional Compensation: Staff members who perform work outside of normal working hours that is clearly in addition to regularly assigned duties, such as interdepartmental consulting, short-term, incidental activities on grants, casual/seasonal work or SFA 101 instruction, may be eligible to receive additional compensation payment(s) in addition to the base appointment salary. Additional compensation is subject to a cap equal to 25% of the base appointment salary.
- Salary Supplements: Staff members who receive a special assignment, such as an interim department head appointment, may receive a salary supplement that temporarily augments the employee's base appointment salary for the duration of the special assignment.
- Stipends: Staff members may receive one-time, lump-sum payments in addition to base appointment salary for receiving an award (i.e., the President's Award), performing at university-sponsored events or as an incentive payment.
- Part-Time Occasional/Sporadic Employment: Staff members may work occasionally or sporadically on a part-time basis for SFA in a different capacity from their regular employment. Examples include taking tickets at university-sponsored events, providing security for special events, and officiating at youth or other recreation and sports events. Nonexempt employees who participate in part-time occasional/sporadic employment should complete the Overtime Exemption for Part-time Occasional/Sporadic Employment Acknowledgement Form.
Compensation and Classification Policies
- HOP policy 02-304 (academic promotion of full-time faculty)
- HOP policy 03-401 (additional compensation)
- HOP policy 02-401 (compensation from grants, contracts and others)
- HOP policy 03-403 (faculty compensation)
- HOP policy 03-404 (faculty merit pay)
- HOP policy 03-207 (fair labor standards)
- HOP policy 03-406 (longevity pay and hazardous duty pay)
- HOP policy 03-407 (overtime and compensatory time)
- HOP policy 03-405 (institutional classified pay plan)