Grade structures exist to make communications about the level of work easier to understand for employers and employees. They identify which jobs are viewed as equivalent and which jobs are bigger or smaller than others. The challenge is, they involve drawing lines (or grade boundaries) where some jobs will benefit from being just above a line of inclusion, and others will be just below. If not managed appropriately, this can compromise credibility of the reward program, undermine employee engagement and impact a company’s bottom line. It can also result in a grade structure that does not reflect the culture or value system of the business, and leave managers and employees distracted and more focused on what it takes to get to the next grade than on executing their given responsibilities.

We see grade structure design as a combination of art and science. The science involves evaluating jobs and placing them in grades by “size”. The art involves analyzing key roles that drive value in the business and ensuring appropriate rewards. Organizations often have key jobs that, from a cultural perspective, need to be valued highly, even relative to objective “size”. We carefully place these jobs to ensure that their compensation reflects their critical value to the organization. This delicate balance mixes technology and expertise – and provides critical grade structure to an organization, while avoiding disastrous misclassifications that can be costly in time, expense and morale.


  • We ask the right questions. We know exactly what questions to ask, how concerns must be addressed, and what trade-offs may need to be made to ensure success.
  • Our method matters. Our best-in-class methodology allows us to accurately categorize jobs by a number of factors, avoiding grade bands that are too large or too small to be effective.
  • We measure jobs three-dimensionally. Each job has a size and shape that lets us see the whole job and classify it accordingly.
  • We are fit for purpose. We develop grade structures using a client tailored approach that few of our competitors are willing or able to adopt. The result is a grade structure that works in the best interests of the organization and that is fully aligned to your organization’s culture and operating model.




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