The Evolving Role of the Head of Total Rewards | HR Policy Association

HR Effectiveness

This 23-page report examines how shifts in the workforce and employee expectations related to work continue to influence total rewards programs and the leaders responsible for designing them. While not highlighted in the report, one area for a greater partnership between total rewards, workforce planning, and talent management leaders is skills-based talent practices. Although there is much talk about moving towards skills-based talent practices, there are several challenges organizations must overcome first—not the least of which is that many organizations don’t even have a common language or a way of understanding their workers’ skills (see i4cp). Total rewards leaders and their talent counterparts in other COEs can work together to answer questions such as:

  1. What is our common language for discussing skills?
  2. How do we determine which employees have these skills?
  3. Which skills are in high demand and short supply?
  4. To what extent should we differentiate pay and rewards based on our employees’ skills and the value the organization and the external market places on those skills?

Regarding #4, I am resharing this Deloitte article that provides ideas on a skills-based rewards model, in which a worker’s base pay comprises both a 1) core salary, which all workers of the same level earn, and a 2) skills salary defined by a worker’s demonstrated proficiency in each skill. While skills-based pay and rewards are at the advanced and more complex end of the skills-based maturity curve, firms must factor this component into their skills-based talent strategy. (Note: this post isn’t an endorsement of any one model but is intended to underscore how the topic of skills-based rewards is complex and requires much thought in order to make it practical for organizations to implement).

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