Valuing Work Frequently Asked Questions

What is the purpose of the Valuing Work Program?

Our goal is to have a fair and effective way to reward excellent performance at Wellesley. In order to do this, we need a flexible compensation program, which not only focuses on the skills and behavior which Wellesley values, but also provides a baseline for an effective performance evaluation and reward system so that our staff knows their contributions are honored. We want to build trust that positions are classified fairly and equitably. We have developed clear salary administration and performance management policies that are available to all employees. Information about the Valuing Work @ Wellesley program including program information, salary levels, performance management, and role classification documents can be found in the Valuing Work @ Wellesley Program folder and on the Human Resources website, www.wellesley.edu/HR/ under “Valuing Work.”
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How was the work done on the project? Who was involved?

This was an ambitious project, which challenged all of us to look at the roles we play as contributors to the mission of Wellesley College. From May 1999 to October 2000, senior leadership, faculty chairs of academic departments, managers and administrative employees throughout the College were involved in this project. There were major design teams in four areas: role classification, salary administration, performance management, and communication. Focus groups for employees at all levels were held. We invited and received input from the Compensation and Personnel Policy Advisory Committee (CPPAC), the Administrative Council, and the College community through presentations and through our website. Consultants from the Wilson Group provided technical expertise at key points. You will find information about the various elements of the program, the purpose, the history and methodology, and the roles of employees, managers, and senior leadership in the Introduction and Overview section.
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Why should I care about the Valuing Work program?

The Valuing Work @ Wellesley program clarifies roles and responsibilities and has a reward system based on performance. By understanding what our roles are, we encourage communication about work. You will have a clear understanding of the criteria being used to determine the classification level of your position, and also what the expectation is at that level for skills, actions, and behaviors. These criteria and expectations serve as a critical foundation for a meaningful process to manage and improve performance, develop skills, and identify career objectives. The emphasis on roles in the classification system allows employees to continue to develop their careers by taking on new assignments and tasks within the same role or by moving into similar roles in different areas of the College. The performance management program provides a meaningful process and tools for setting expectations and assessing results which enables managers to more clearly differentiate pay among various types of performers as well as acknowledge excellence. The Role Classification section describes the purposes of role documentation.
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What criteria were used to evaluate my job?

We wanted to develop a program that would identify what is important to Wellesley now and in the future. The criteria for evaluating the roles we play were developed by a cross-functional team of your colleagues at Wellesley. The design team developed a model that considers the following compensable factors or competencies, namely: Service to Constituents, Expertise, Accountability/Responsibility, Collaboration, Communication, Innovation & Problem Solving/Critical Thinking, and Development of Self and Others. The degree to which you are required to use these competencies in your role determines the level of your job. Because the Valuing Work program was developed specifically for Wellesley College, all levels in this model reflect professional roles. Level one reflects and defines the high level of competency required for those positions. You can find more detailed information on the classification factors in the Role Classification section.
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Is length of service valued under this program?

Valuing Work @ Wellesley recognizes the importance of how we do our jobs rather than how long we have done them. The wide salary bands associated with each level allow more salary growth for longer service employees based on individual performance.
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How was my level determined?

Administrative staff employees and/or their manager complete role documents describing the demands of the position. Originally, the process of role documentation was completed in a variety of ways: sometimes individually, sometimes by pairs, and sometimes by teams of incumbents in collaboration with the supervisor. A core team of representatives from Human Resources together with selected managers evaluated each role document using the compensable factors to determine the appropriate level for that position. Then, senior leadership and selected managers reviewed the results to ensure the assigned level made sense both within the division and College-wide. Today, updated or new role documents are reviewed by Human Resources. The Compensation Manager discusses the role document with the manager and/or employee. The role is assigned the appropriate level for that position using the compensable factors. Finally, the level assignment and the appropriateness of the level within the Division and College-wide are reviewed by the Division Head. The Role Documentation and Role Classifications sections detail how a role document is completed and how the role is classified.
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What can I do if I don’t agree with my level?

If you have questions about your Role Document, speak with your manager as your first resource.
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When should my role document be updated and reviewed?

A new role document should be completed when a role has changed significantly enough to require new documentation. A role focuses on factors such as the groups or areas the position serves, the end accountabilities of the role, and the overall abilities and skills required for the specific type of work. Since the focus is not on a collection of tasks, role documents need to be updated less frequently than job descriptions. However, the role document is a dynamic document that should not be filed away. It is crucial for performance management and career development. The Role Classification section details the role reclassification process.
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What positions are in what level?

You can find a list of positions at each level in the Role Classification Section.
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What salary bands are associated with each level?

You can find the salary bands for each level in the Salary Structure and Salary Administration Policies section.
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What does it mean to have wide salary bands?

There are seven levels with a very wide salary band associated with each level. These levels are based on the varied roles we play. The broad salary bands make it easier for you to move to another position within the College without undue focus or barriers resulting from narrow grade and pay ranges. There is more flexibility within the salary bands for market adjustments. A number of different roles may be assigned to the same level. A senior position may be in the same salary band as a more entry-level position. A supervisor may be in the same salary band as the staff member she or he supervises. Additional information can be found in the Salary Structure and Salary Administration Policies section.
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How will my salary be determined in the future?

The degree to which you are required to use the areas of skill or competencies is what determines the level of your position. Market pay helps us determine what the salary range should be for your job. Your actual performance in the job will be what actually determines your pay on an ongoing basis.
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What market data are used?

Human Resources collects salary survey information on benchmark positions. Benchmark positions are positions that are typically found in educational institutions and/or general industry. The type of position will determine whether local, regional, or national data are appropriate. The type of position will determine whether we look at data obtained from educational or cross-industry surveys.
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My role is unique. How do you determine my salary?

All positions are in some way unique and every role is important in supporting the mission of Wellesley College. Your role has been assigned a level within the Wellesley College role classification system using factors that apply to all roles. Part of the market for your salary includes those employees in comparable positions in the same level. In some situations, we will seek additional information outside of Wellesley to ensure competitive salaries.

Each year, Human Resources reviews administrative salaries in order to ensure that we remain competitive with the external market. When the market changes for certain positions, we will review the salary and performance of the employee(s) in the role to determine whether a salary adjustment is necessary.
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HR values and respects confidentiality.