Establishing an equitable starting salary rate leads to the retention and motivation of your new employees. Your HR Partner can provide information on both internal and external market pay comparisons, to help you determine the pay range for your position. USC’s compensation philosophy is both merit-based (yearly raises based on performance evaluations) and market-based. We target pay between the 50th and 75th percentiles of internal and external benchmarks. USC does not have prescribed salary/wage scales or grades. Pay rates for employees represented by unions are mandated by the appropriate collective bargaining agreement.

It is illegal in California to ask an applicant for his/her salary history. You may not base a hiring decision or a new hire’s salary on their salary history – unless they volunteer their salary history, in which case you may consider it in determining salary. However, the California Fair Pay Act also forbids employers from relying on prior salary, by itself, to justify any disparity in pay. You also are required to provide applicants with the pay range for a position upon their reasonable request.

In addition to salary/wages, USC also provides a variety of other pay components that may comprise future incentives to your employees, including bonuses, sales incentives/commissions, allowances, and overload payments. Talk to your HR Partner about these options.