Compensation and Benefits

Salary Structure 

A large portion of GC's jobs have been benchmarked to reliable market data sources, and the market consensus from these sources has informed the development of the salary structure. The structure is designed to allow the institution to attract and retain employees. If institutional needs or specific jobs/job families require greater competitiveness, the pay position for select jobs and/or job families may be modified.

The salary structure is made up of several components:

  • Grade is the label used for a single salary range. The structure has 13 grades with control points (minimums, midpoints, maximums). Cabinet members are paid outside of the structure.
  • The minimum is the lowest point at which an employee whose job is within a specific grade will be paid.
  • The midpoint is the average of the minimum and the maximum. It is literally the “middle” of the grade. Pay for employees who are fully competent in their role will cluster around this point once the structure and any related adjustments are fully implemented.
  • The maximum is the highest point at which an employee whose job is within the grade will be paid.

To view the salary structure, click here.

Staff Salary Review

Scope of Study 

Georgia College (GC) has exhibited tremendous growth over the last several years. As part of its strategic plan to become a nationally preeminent public liberal arts university, it is important that the institution’s compensation program be reviewed to ensure it can help support this vision. Sibson worked with GC in 2011-2012 to conduct a comprehensive review of its staff and administrator compensation program. Given the changes over the last six years, it is time to conduct an audit of the compensation program to ensure it meets the needs of the institution. The scope of the study is approximately 500 staff and administrator employees. 

Project Deliverables 

Total Compensation Philosophy – A vision and strategy developed through the engagement about how, going forward, pay and its administration need to fit with the attraction/retention/career development of employees as well as the operational and financial realities of GC. 

Competitive Market Assessment (Variance Analysis) - Summary exhibits and Excel model showing the salary market competitiveness to aggregate, by job, and by employee. 

Salary Structure Assessment – Market-based structure tied to desired pay positioning. Benchmark jobs assigned to structure based on market assessment results. Non-benchmark jobs assigned to structure based on comparison to internal factors. 

Assigning Jobs to Grades

The grade to which jobs were assigned was determined as follows:

Benchmark jobs (those for which market data was collected and analyzed) were initially assigned to grades based on the market consensus (i.e., market value) of the job relative to the grade midpoint. In select cases, job assignments shifted slightly based on either the placement of other highly similar jobs or the strategic value of the job to GC.
Non-Benchmark jobs (those not included in the market competitive assessment) were assigned to grades based on the degree to which they are similar to benchmark jobs already assigned to grades within the structure. Factors for this comparison include impact of accountability, latitude of decision-making, level of managerial responsibility, education/experience requirements, and skill level.

For both types of jobs, career progression from one level to the next and the reporting relationships were taken into account when assigning a job to a grade.

Managing Pay Within the Structure

The compensation program's salary grades are wide enough to accommodate a variety of experience and performance levels. Each employee can expect to be paid within the range associated with his or her job's salary grade. Base salaries within the range will be determined by considering each individual's skills, knowledge, experience, and performance.​

Creating a New Job

From time to time, it may become necessary to create a new job to allow the University to achieve its strategic goals. HR will complete reviews for new jobs on a monthly basis or more frequently if driven by the institution's strategic needs and subject to the Budget Proposal Process. When this becomes necessary, the manager, appropriate Vice President, and HR will follow the steps below:

Step 1: Develop a Job Description for the Job
The manager, working with the appropriate Vice President as needed, develops a job description for the job to account for the key duties of the job. Managers should fill out a Job Description Questionnaire form and submit the form to HR. A template form is included in the Appendix.

Step 2: Assess to Determine if Job Currently Exists at the University
HR completes a review of the job description questionnaire to determine whether or not it fits into a job which currently exists at GC. If it does, the job will retain the same title as the existing job, and pay is based on the grade for the job title. If not, proceed to Step 3.

Step 3: Review the Description and Determine its Grade Assignment
Either through a quantitative market analysis (for benchmark jobs) or a qualitative comparison against jobs already assigned to grades in the salary structure (non-benchmark jobs), HR will determine the grade in which the job will be placed.

Once this process has been completed and the job is filled (either internally or externally), the starting salary will be set using the process detailed below.

Setting the Initial Salary

Setting a starting salary involves a review, by Human Resources, of a job's responsibilities and requirements as well as the skills and experience of the candidate, using the salary range associated with the job's grade as the guideline.

Step 1: Review the Skills and Experience of the Individual
Individual salaries will be set within the grade collaboratively by Human Resources and the employee's manager. This decision will be based on the candidate's skills, knowledge, and experience.

Step 2: Review Internal Equity
Before any salary is finalized, Human Resources will conduct a review of salaries of current employees in similar jobs to ensure internal equity.

Step 3: Final Approval of Salary Level
Final salary recommendation is submitted to the appropriate Vice President for review. Upon approval, Human Resources will submit this information for appropriate next steps.

Note that this process may vary depending on the level of the job at Georgia College.

Ongoing Maintenance of Salary Structure

Human Resources will review both higher education and general industry market trends and surveys to determine the appropriate salary structure adjustment. These resources include a review of the increase percentages by various employee levels: executive, salaried exempt, and hourly. The Vice President for Administration and Operations as the Chief Business /Finance Officer will make the final decision on the structure increase, given the financial resources of the institution and Board of Regents funding.​

New Process for Submitting Position Evaluations

We have a NEW process for creating, modifying, viewing, and printing position descriptions for a position vacancy or an occupied position.

The "Position Management Module" is the part of the PeopleAdmin 7 system which serves as a repository for position descriptions and facilitates the position creation, update, reclassification, and review process electronically for staff positions.

Note: Total turnaround time from position request approval is estimated to be 10 business days. (Process may take longer during peak processing times.)

To start the process, login to

Benefits Contact Information

To find more information for health, dental, vision, and flexible spending accounts, please visit the USG Benefits website

The University System of Georgia’s HSA Open Access POS plan meets the Affordability Requirement under the Affordable Care Act.  Therefore, in general, University System of Georgia employees who are eligible for health insurance will not be eligible for a tax credit in 2014 through the Health Insurance Marketplace (or Exchanges) created under the Affordable Care Act.  

If you are not eligible for Health Insurance through the University System of Georgia and would like more information about the Health Insurance Marketplace, please visit the Federal Health Insurance Marketplace website at  

Health care

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Georgia (BCBSGa)

(HSA Open Access POS, Open Access POS and BlueChoice HMO options)

Phone: 1-800-424-8950

Kaiser Permanente

Phone: 1-404-261-2590 or 1-800-611-1811


Delta Dental

Phone: 1-800-471-4214



Phone: 1-866-800-5457



Phone: 1-877-470-1771

Life and AD&D

Minnesota Life

Phone: 1-866-293-6047



Phone: 1-866-832-5759


Employee Assistance Program to help you deal with the challenges of life, including work, family, money, relationships and more. Confidential and at no cost to you and your dependent family members.


Phone: 1-888-960-3305