Compensation Overview for Managers

The Wage and Salary, Overtime and Fair Labor Standards Policy is a comprehensive resource for information on pay for faculty, salaried staff, hourly staff and bargaining unit positions.

Compensation Philosophy

Syracuse University’s compensation philosophy is to:

  • Recruit, retain, and reward a talented and effective staff;
  • Recognize staff’s value and contributions to the University;
  • Reward staff for performance;
  • Ensure fair and consistent administration in all units across the University.

The compensation framework allows flexibility to make appropriate decisions based on specific circumstances. Managers/supervisors, staff, and HR all have roles to play in managing pay effectively and consistently, in compliance with all applicable regulations. Human Resources, managers/supervisors, and staff all have a role to play in maintaining the compensation program and ensuring that all the pieces of the program are managed appropriately.

Roles and Responsibilities

Human Resources

The Office of Human Resources serves as a resource to SU’s managers/supervisors. Specifically, HR has several important roles and responsibilities:

  • Communicate programs and guidelines to help managers/supervisors to understand all aspects of the compensation program.
  • Provide (internal and external) information, data, and advice on pay levels, policies, and practices.
  • Provide expert guidance, perspective, and support to enable managers/supervisors to make appropriate pay decisions.
  • Review compensation decisions to identify and address any significant variations in practices both within and among units.
  • Keep senior administration aware of compensation practices across SU.


Managers/supervisors play a critical role in managing the compensation programs as they provide the job description that is the main component used to evaluate the position and thus compare for internal and external salary comparators.  Managers/supervisors are responsible for ensuring that staff understands the compensation program, as well as for providing open, honest, and timely feedback to staff on compensation issues, answering both specific and general questions about pay.  Managers/supervisors are responsible and accountable for the following:

  • Establishing and maintaining equitable pay practices within their areas of responsibility.
  • Recommending annual increases.
  • Distributing performance-based pay increases, consistent with SU’s compensation philosophy, market factors, budget constraints, and approval processes.
  • Ensuring staff understand the compensation program and any future changes.
  • Providing open, honest, and timely feedback to staff on compensation issues, answering both specific and general questions about pay.
  • Working with staff to keep Position Evaluation Requests (job descriptions) current.
  • Using Sr. HR Business Partners as a resource to ensure appropriateness of decisions and consistency with pay guidelines.

Staff members

While staff members are not responsible for making pay decisions or actively managing the compensation program, they do have other important responsibilities:

  • Understanding the compensation program by using the tools and resources SU makes available (e.g. written materials, town meetings, HR web site).
  • Discussing questions or concerns with their manager/supervisor and/or HR.
  • Working with their manager/supervisor to keep their position evaluation requests (job descriptions) updated.
  • Actively seek information and ask questions so as to understand decisions about their pay.

Managers and supervisors can review training materials for system transactions, information about student employment, and more under Information for . . . Managers and Supervisors.

If you have any questions about compensation for your staff, contact HR Shared Services at 315.443.4042, or send an email to the HR Compensation Team.