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Dear Workforce How Do We Implement A New Wage Classification Plan

Dear Where to Begin:

We believe communication that explains the business rationale, and thepersonal impact the change will have on employees, is a requirement. Hopefullythe impact is not all negative to those who will be earning less, and hopefullyyou have devised a solution to increase pay opportunities based on developingmore skills, achieving higher level results, or other factors. It sounds likeyour organization had significant inequities in the past that are beingaddressed today. I would make these points as explicit as possible. Goodcommunication in such cases is not only good business practice, but necessary toensure legal defensibility of actions.

The major changes relate to introducing differences in pay based on two added criteria: 1) Job complexity and content (not just performanceagainst same expectations, year in and year out) and 2) Competencies (e.g.learning orientation, initiative, etc.).

The constructs for getting ahead are apparently changing at your workplace.No longer can an employee simply perform well at the same job year after year.Other skills, both technical and competencies, must be developed, and outputsmust be increased against rising expectations. It sounds like you are developinga more complete performance orientation.

The best way to communicate this is in stages:

  • Communication to all employees from CEO/HR indicating reason for change,impact of change, and implementation process.
  • Management training on the changes and how to manage them (preferably before the all-employee communication).
  • All-employee meetings–either en masse with senior management or insubgroups, jointly run by HR and line management. Q and A and examples of “WIFFM”(what’s in it for me) should be provided.

It is important in these meetings and communications to show the businesscase, and how this can be a positive for those who perform, learn, grow, anddevelop.

SOURCE: Jim Bowers, consultant, The Hay Group, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania,Sept. 23, 2002.

LEARN MORE: Read CanPay for Performance Really Work?

The information contained in this article is intended to provide usefulinformation on the topic covered, but should not be construed as legal advice ora legal opinion. Also remember that state laws may differ from the federal law.

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