Pay and Rewards

How is pay for new employees determined at GW?

GW has a longstanding commitment to treating all of its employees equitably and fairly in all aspects of employment, including in compensation. GW has competitive market ranges established throughout our pay structures. Hiring Managers, in close consultation with Human Resources, can decide the starting salary within that range. While there is no single “going rate” for a job, salaries aim to attract, reward, and retain employees. 

GW HR has established pay ranges within each position classification, which provide a framework for determining the appropriate starting salary based on a number of legitimate factors depending on the position; these include relevant skill sets, work experience, and education. This provides a consistent methodology to determine an appropriate starting salary and remain competitive. 

Most new employees at GW are hired somewhere between the minimum and midpoint, otherwise known as the “Typical Hiring Range.” (The Typical Hiring Range for Research and Labs positions is further into the range.) Again, there are many factors that impact starting salary decisions and whether a salary within the “Typical Hiring Range” or above is ultimately selected, including the factors stated above, departmental budget, and demand for qualified candidates. 

Annual Salary Planning

Annual Salary Planning is also referred to as the Annual Merit Increase Process at GW. Every year one part of the GW’s Board of Trustees annual evaluation of the overall health of the organization is to work to provide for the acknowledgment and reward of staff engagement and accomplishments, related to performance.  When financially supported, GW typically offers an annual merit review process.  

Compensation partners with university leadership, financial leaders, and HRMD colleagues to define and administer the merit award strategy.

The guiding principles of the Staff Annual Salary Planning and Administration include:

  • Merit is related to employee performance, and reviewing performance is required to award merit.
  • Managers evaluate performance, and managers initiate merit requests.
  • Merit awards consider performance over the full performance year; merit awards are typically prorated if an employee starts their position further into the performance year.
  • Final merit awards are evaluated to consider:
    • Overall merit strategy
    • Fairness and consistency
    • Budget

Regular employees will be considered for merit increases related to work performance. Managers evaluate employee performance, and managers initiate merit requests.  Guidelines for merit rate increases are recommended by Human Resource Management and Development and approved by senior management of the university and are based on a pay-for-performance principle. For more information, please see the Performance Management section.

Incentives at GW

In addition to base salary, GW provides for the strategic use of incentives to meet critical goals of the university.  Managers can consider the use of incentive pay based on evaluation of a number of factors.