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Staff Box

Classification Redesign: Analysis Completed

I am pleased to let you know that the extensive analytical work associated with the Classification Redesign Project has been completed. Over the next two months, findings from the project will be discussed with school and center management. Input from these discussions will be considered prior to the full implementation of a new job evaluation system and salary structure. All University staff will be briefed on the project findings prior to project implementation.

We received a tremendous amount of information about University positions from staff, gathering over 130,000 pages of information from the position information questionnaires. Over 90% of all staff completed these questionnaires, a tremendous turnout. Thank you for the time and energy that each of you put into this effort.

It is important to restate the initial goal of this project, first summarized to the University last year:

"All organizations, including universities, require on-going monitoring and updating of their job classification, pay delivery and benefit systems. Penn's current job classification system dates back to the early 80's. Many changes to job content and design have occurred since then, brought about by such factors as technology and new work practices, as well as an increasingly competitive marketplace for highly skilled people.

"A major reassessment at this juncture is, therefore, both normal and desirable, the expected result of a changing workforce and changing world. The Classification Redesign Team will help build a new system of evaluating staff positions which will be responsive to these changes, sensitive to labor market conditions and consistently and efficiently administered."

The recommendations of this project will establish a contemporary job classification program which will consistently evaluate University positions and help us be responsive to changes within the labor market and our own business needs. At the same time, this project will provide updated position descriptions to University staff based on information gathered from the questionnaires.

While the focus of this project has always been on the job classification process, it is important to state that our compensation programs will continue to provide flexibility in adjusting staff salaries based on departmental management recommendations beyond the annual salary adjustment program. Over 800 University staff last year alone received salary adjustments based on market conditions and changes within their job responsibilities. An additional 500 staff moved into new positions on campus--this will continue as we move forward, albeit in a more managed way.

We look forward to providing more specific information about the recommendations of this project in the weeks ahead.

-- John Fry, Executive Vice President


Return to:Almanac, University of Pennsylvania, October 21, 1997, Volume 44, No. 9