Human Resources > Salary Information > Compensation FAQ's

Compensation FAQ's

 1) What is total compensation?

2) What are the responsibilities of Compensation Services?

3) How do I request a reclassification?

4) How does a Compensation Analyst determine the appropriate classification?

5) How do I inquire about the status of my reclassification?

6) What is the difference between a reclass and a position update?

7) How long does the reclassification process take?

8) What is a desk audit?

9) When does the union need to be noticed on a classification action?

10) What is the difference between a promotion and a reclass?

11) What is a downward reclassification?

12) What is red-circling?

13) What is a step-based salary system?

14) What is an open range salary system?

15) What is a range adjustment?

16) What is an exempt position?

17) What is a non-exempt position?

18) Can a supervisor be non-exempt?

19) Is the FLSA status, (exempt/non-exempt determination), considered final or can determinations be appealed or changed based upon management comment?

20) Can "exempt" employees work part-time?

21) If a nonexempt employee works overtime without obtaining prior approval from his/her supervisor, is the department obligated to compensate premium overtime?

22) Can detailed time reporting records be kept for exempt employees for purposes other than compensation or salary?

23) What is premium overtime?

24) Are departments required to pay premium overtime to "non-exempt" employees who work over 40 hours a week, or do departments have the discretion to provide compensatory time off?

25) What is the difference between a supervisor and a lead worker?

26) What is a confidential employee?

27) What is an equity adjustment?

28) What are stipends awarded for?


1) What is total compensation?

The complete pay package for employees, including all forms of money, benefits, services, and in-kind payments.

2) What are the responsibilities of Compensation Services?

To appropriately classify and compensate staff positions.

3) How do I request a reclassification?

An employee should work with their supervisor to update their position description and request a review of their job when there has been a substantive change in the duties and responsibilities assigned to a position. Managers should submit the request to Compensation Services for review.

4) How does a Compensation Analyst determine the appropriate classification?

A compensation analyst first reviews and analyzes the various components of a position to ascertain the nature of the work being performed. This analysis identifies the appropriate job series for the position. In addition to comparing to the class specifications, the analysts will compare the job to other similar UC Davis positions and to market data if appropriate.

5) How do I inquire about the status of my reclassification?

Employees should consult with their immediate supervisor regarding the status of their reclassification. Supervisors and managers may consult with Compensation Services at 752-9926 regarding the status of reclass review.

6) What is the difference between a reclass and a position update?

A reclass is a request to review a position for the appropriate classification level. An update is a review of position which has had minimal changes and no change in classification level is anticipated.

7) How long does the reclassification process take?

Generally 30 - 45 days, however, if a desk audit is needed or union notice is required, the process may take longer.

8) What is a desk audit?

An "interview" by a Compensation Analyst with the incumbent of the position and their immediate supervisor in order to gather information to appropriately classify the position.

9) When does the union need to be noticed on a classification action?

When a position is being reclassified out of the bargaining unit. Notice requirements vary according to specific UC/Union agreements.

10) What is the difference between a promotion and a reclass?

A promotion is the assignment of an employee from one position to another position, by way of an open recruitment, which is in a class having a higher salary range maximum. A reclassification is the change of title of an employee's current position to a title of a different class having a higher salary range maximum.

11) What is a downward reclassification?

The movement of a position to a classification with a lower salary range maximum.

12) What is red-circling?

An individual pay rate that is above the established range maximum assigned to the job grade. Hence, the incumbent is usually not eligible for further base pay increases until the range maximum surpasses the individual pay rate.

13) What is a step-based salary system?

A salary structure with standard progression rates established within a pay range for a job. Employees may progress from step to step on the basis of performance.

14) What is an open range salary sytem?

A salary structure with a minimum and maximum value to the pay range for a job. An individual progresses through the range based on performance.

15) What is a range adjustment?

An across-the-board salary increase affecting individual employees' pay and salary ranges.

16) What is an exempt position?

A position exempt from the overtime provisions of the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Includes executives, administrative employees, professional employees and those engaged in outside sales.

17) What is a non-exempt position?

A position subject to the minimum wage and overtime pay provisions of the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).

18) Can a supervisor be non-exempt?

Yes.

19) Is the FLSA status, (exempt/non-exempt determination), considered final or can determinations be appealed or changed based upon management comment?

The FLSA status has been determined for each title. However, individual positions or performance may require analysis by Compensation to ensure that each is assigned to the appropriate classification. As always, positions must meet the series concept definitions in order to be reclassified. Positions will not be reclassified for the purpose of avoiding overtime payments.

20) Can "exempt" employees work part-time?

Yes, but the part-time employee must also be compensated on a salaried basis. For example, if an exempt employee has a 50% appointment, they would be paid at 50% of the established monthly rate. The workload should be adjusted as appropriate.

21) If a nonexempt employee works overtime without obtaining prior approval from his/her supervisor, is the department obligated to compensate premium overtime?

Yes. Overtime must always be authorized in advance by the supervisor. However, it still accrues as a liability when the employee works overtime and the supervisor knows or "should have known" that the work was performed and did nothing to stop it from occurring. Corrective action may be appropriate against the employee for not following department procedure.

22) Can detailed time reporting records be kept for exempt employees for purposes other than compensation or salary?

Yes, detailed records to the quarter hour can be kept for employees who charge a percentage of their salary to various grants or who are working on a number of accounts and the work charged to each account varies, or for other purposes, such as management reports, as long as the recording of time does not relate to pay.

23) What is premium overtime?

Time and one-half for hours worked in excess of 40 hours in a workweek.

24) Are departments required to pay premium overtime to "non-exempt" employees who work over 40 hours a week, or do departments have the discretion to provide compensatory time off?

For Non-Exclusively Represented Staff (PPSM): At the time overtime work is assigned, managers/supervisors need to discuss the method of compensation prior to authorizing the overtime. Management may offer either payment or Compensatory Time Off (CTO). The employee selects the method - payment or CTO. For Exclusively Represented Employees: Please consult respective contracts for current practice.

25) What is the difference between a supervisor and a lead worker?

A Lead Worker is an incumbent that functions in a “lead” capacity for a group of employees working on a project or a specific assignment basis. The Lead Worker does not have full formal supervisory authority for staff assigned to projects; however, in order to complete projects/assignment must be able to schedule and control the daily working arrangements for a specified group of employees. For a full definition visit the guideline for Lead Workers.

A Supervisor is an incumbent that customarily and regularly directs the work of two or more other career employees working in a department/unit and has the authority to hire or fire other employees or whose suggestions and recommendations as to the hiring or firing and as to the advancement and promotion or any other change of status of other employees will be given particular weight. For a full definition visit the guideline for Supervisors.

26) What is a confidential employee?

An employee who is required to develop or present management positions on collective bargaining, or whose duties normally require access to confidential information that contributes significantly to the development of management positions on collective bargaining.

27) What is an equity adjustment?

Equity adjustments are salary changes outside of the normal salary programs (promotions, reclassifications, merits, etc.) to remedy salary issues such as external pressure in high demand areas, internal salary compression, and/or retention considerations. Equity adjustments are not granted to reward performance. For specific information on use of equities please consult the appropriate policy/Labor contract.

28) What are stipends awarded for?

An administrative stipend is a form of compensation used to pay an employee who is temporarily assigned responsibilities of a higher level position (out-of-classification pay).

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