September 13, 1999
Volume 52, No. 4
Human Resources: a column examining HR issues
Compensation-more than a paycheck
Emory is committed to maintaining a competitive pay program. To achieve this goal, Human Resources works with department representatives to ensure salaries are both externally competitive and internally equitable.
"Because compensation can be 'market driven,' much of our time is devoted to assessing how salaries are moving for specific jobs or job families, and to developing strategies to enhance recruitment and retention," said Beth Brundige, compensation manager.
Emory is an extremely diverse community with a museum, a regional primate center, a presidential center and two hospitals, so finding market data can be somewhat of a challenge. "We include the public and private sectors, drawing from local, regional and national data," Brundige explained. "Throughout the year we participate in numerous salary surveys to assess the competitiveness of Emory's salary ranges and pay rates. We maintain a comprehensive database of salary information, typically containing anywhere from 50 to 75 surveys."
For the last five years, salary structures and average salaries have been moving at a very consistent rate; nationally, structures have been increasing at 2 to 3 percent per year while salaries have been rising at an average rate of 3.5 to 4 percent.
Assessing faculty compensation is equally challenging due to the diversity of disciplines and regional living costs. Emory's faculty salaries ranked seventh in a recent national survey of 81 research institutions (taking cost of living into account). Emory ranked in the top 10 percent, ahead of the University of Virginia and Cornell and Yale universities.
In addition to pay, Emory offers a very generous benefits package, representing about a quarter of an employee's salary, that includes educational benefits, such as courtesy scholarships and tuition reimbursement; insurance coverage (health, dental, vision, disability and life); vacation, holiday and sick leave; retirement contributions; MARTA incentives; credit union membership; discounted health club membership, wellness programs and dependent care resources. Emory also offers a variety of tax-saving opportunities through flexible spending accounts and pre-tax deductions.
With competitive salaries, comprehensive benefits and a dynamic environment, it's no wonder Emory is DeKalb County's premier employer.
Wynell Lauver is communications specialist with Human Resources.