Kna/HR Consulting Case Study – Job Evaluation Plans

During the 1990s and 2000s, many organizations developed job evaluation plans (JEP). Job evaluation plans determine what pay to assign to a position within an organization.  Job evaluation plans would rate the job’s responsibility, skill, working conditions, and effort. Once rated, the job would be assigned a numerical value. The job’s numerical value would then determine the jobs pay level.  These plans were important for a number of reasons, including creating: transparency in job pay assignments, a fair process, and compliance with equal pay for equal work and pay equity legislation.

Kn/a HR partnered with several organizations to build their job evaluation plans. Additionally, a number of these plans were developed jointly with the organization’s union. Organizations and unions worked hard to build pay plans that could be explained, treated positions fairly, and complied with the law. The implementation of job evaluation plans was a dramatic shift in how pay was determined.  Now job evaluation plans in those organizations are typical and readily accepted. 

Job evaluation plan image

The Evolution Of The Job Evaluation Plan

Fast forward to the 2010s, and now the 2020s, job evaluation is still typical and accepted.  However, organizations have evolved, and many  job evaluation plans have not. Many organizations have a more robust, defined culture and values. Also, positions have changed to reflect developments in work, technology, and structure. Several organizations are finding that their JEP developed 10-to-20 years ago are no longer a good reflection of the organization, the organization’s work, or the organization’s values. In some cases, although there was a maintenance plan, the plan has not been maintained. Kn/a HR has worked with several organizations to renew their JEP. In one such case, the Kn/a HR team partnered with a large organization to renew their out-of-scope JEP. 

The organization’s plan was a credible “off the shelf” JEP, but 1) not specific to the organization, 2) was getting dated, and 3) had not been applied correctly for several years. But more importantly, the organization and those affected by the plan no longer had faith in the plan and no longer felt it was “fair.”  It also didn’t correctly address the internal pay hierarchy. 

After clarifying the issues and understanding the goals, Kn/a HR reviewed the plan and made recommendations for changes to 1) greater reflect the values of the organization, 2) have a stronger link to operations, 3) provide clear guidance in the application of the plan, and 4) share information and educate the affected people. The Kn/a HR team developed a process to collect information for all 70+ unique positions. The positions were rated, and rating rationales were written. Then, the Kn/a HR team worked with affected staff to review the ratings.  We worked directly with the directors and managers to understand the position rating results. Additional complexity was added as the organization had multiple JEPs, and the results of this particular plan were reviewed in relation to the other plans. 

The Job Evaluation Plan Outcome

The outcome of this project was an updated JEP. There were some changes to the pay hierarchy, but the most significant change and organizational outcome was that people felt heard and had faith in the plan. The plan was a better fit for the organization in its current state and desired future state. To this day, the processes and changes to the plan recommended by Kn/a HR are still in place.

If you are interested in finding out more about our Job Evaluation plan please contact us today. 

Kn/a HR partners with you to build HR management capacity, tools, and strategies to create a healthy work culture and strong business results. We collaborate with organizations to strategically build the people side of business. Kn/a HR Consulting provides human resource management services to organizations across Canada, including, Manitoba, Saskatchewan Alberta, and British Columbia.


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