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Terms and Definitions

Here are some terms & definitions that are commonly used in Human Resources and, more specifically, in Compensation. You may find them helpful as you write job descriptions, engage in the classification/reclassification process, or make hiring decisions!

Regular Position

An ongoing position of at least six months in duration with no defined or anticipated ending date.

Temporary Position

An appointment that may not exceed 6 months in duration.

BCAT (job code)

“BCAT” stands for Board of Regents’ Category. It is a six character code that represents the Board of Regents’ category for a job classification.

Benchmark Jobs

Jobs commonly found in the market place which is used as a reference point for making pay comparisons.

Comparable Position

An existing position that is compared to the position under review in its functions, responsibilities, and accountabilities, direct supervisor responsibilities, and/or organizational hierarchy and scope.

Desk Audit

This is an in depth review that allows the incumbent and area supervisor to describe the duties and responsibilities of the position and provide illustrative examples.

Essential Job Functions & Responsibilities

The required job duties that an employee must be able to perform.

Exempt Position

A position that is not protected under the FLSA (Federal Labor Standards Act). Not entitled to overtime pay.

Hiring Range

The minimum to first quartile amount of a pay range, based on available funding, that can be offered to a new employee. For titles on the pay plan, the pay range would be from the minimum to the first quartile.

In-Range Adjustment

To adjust an employees’ pay within the existing pay range.

Internal Equity

Salary comparisons of employees with others employees in similar positions in the same unit, college, division, or University as a whole.

Job Evaluation

The process for deciding a title and pay grade for a job. It involves reviewing the duties and responsibilities, education, experience, required skills, and related pay grades.

Lateral Transfer

An employee is placed in a new title in the same pay grade.

Market Adjustment

An increase to an employee’s pay in order to adjust it to match or bring closer to the estimated market level/value.

Market Pricing

A technique of creating a job worth hierarchy based on the “going rate” for benchmark jobs in the labor market relevant to the University.

Maximum Rate

The highest pay rate on the pay range.

Merit Increase

An adjustment to an employee’s pay that is based on performance as measured through a performance appraisal.


The salary that represents the middle of a given salary range or pay grade.

Minimum Hiring Standards (MHS)

The minimum education and experience required to perform a given job.

Minimum Rate

The lowest pay rate on the pay range.

Non-Exempt Position

A position that is covered under the FLSA (Federal Labor Standards Act). Entitled to overtime pay for hours worked.

Organizational Chart

A graphic representation of the structure of a department, division, or unit. It portrays the reporting relationships among titles.

Pay Range

The range of pay rates, from minimum to maximum, established for a pay grade.

Preferred Qualifications

Qualifications (knowledge, skills, and abilities) that are “ideal: for an applicant to have, but are not necessary to perform the essential job function (or primary duties) assigned to a position.


When an existing position is given a new title and or pay grade due to a significant change in essential duties and responsibilities.


A reorganization of a department or unit.

Salary Survey

The gathering of data on wages and salaries paid by other employers for benchmark jobs.

Sponsored Funded

Positions that are paid by grants and will probably last longer than three years.

Supervision - Close

An individual does not use their own initiative. Is instructed by the supervisor as to the solution and selection of the proper procedures to follow.

Supervision - Direct

An individual is involved with the guidance and direction over individuals who report to them. Includes supervision of work, training, and personal functions.

Supervision - General

Involves guidance and direction actually carried out by the immediate supervisor.

Supervision - Limited

Individuals proceeds on own initiatives in compliance with policies, practices, and procedures prescribed by immediate supervisors.

Supervisory/Managerial Experience

Any work experience involving responsibility and authority to hire, fire, train, and evaluate the performance of immediate staff.

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