The University of New Mexico recognizes the vital role its staff employees play in carrying out its stated mission to serve as New Mexico’s flagship institution of higher learning through teaching, research, patient care and community service. To this end, the University seeks to retain employees in key professional or managerial positions that are deemed critical to business needs and difficult to fill.
Therefore, UNM Human Resources (HR) offers departments the opportunity to increase the salary of high performing staff members with critical skills whom they anticipate may be at risk of leaving and who have not received an offer from an internal or external employer, as outlined in the following guidelines:
A retention offer may be considered on an exception basis if a key professional or managerial employee in a position that has been deemed both critical to business needs and difficult to fill. It is not necessary for an employee to receive an offer from an external agency or another UNM department in order to receive a retention offer; however, the department must have a legitimate business reason to believe that an increase in salary will be vital to retaining the employee.
All proposed retention offers must be discussed case-by-case with HR, to determine that the above criteria are met, before making the offer to the employee. Employees who accept a retention offer will be required to wait 24 months prior to receiving any additional offers from their current department, including counter offers. Employees on trial or probation are not eligible for retention offers.
Prior to Submitting a Request
There are many reasons beyond salary that motivate employees to remain in their jobs. Departments are encouraged to engage employees in conversations about retention, otherwise known as “stay interviews.” Stay interviews help managers understand why employees stay and what might motivate them to leave. HR offers a Stay Interview Guide to help guide managers and supervisors through retention conversations.
Additionally, a variety of beneficial information is available in the Managers Toolkit, including the New Employee Retention Program. Managers and supervisors may also consider attending one of the many valuable courses offered by HR Employee and Organizational Development, available for registration on Learning Central (search for any of the following keywords: retention, engagement, motivation, coaching, performance).
Retention Offer Process
Departments must obtain approval prior to making a retention offer to an employee. To obtain approval, complete a Retention Offer Justification Form and outline the following:
- Why the position is difficult to fill and critical to business needs
- The essential skills and qualifications obtained by the incumbent which directly relate to the position
- Why the department believes the employee may be at risk of leaving the department, as well as why they believe a retention offer is vital to retaining the employee
Budgetary approval will be required prior to submitting the request to HR Compensation. Departments who are currently subject to the hiring moratorium will require approval by the Hiring Moratorium Committee prior to submitting the form to HR Compensation.
When all of the appropriate approvals are obtained, the Retention Offer Justification Form may be sent to HR Compensation at email@example.com. Departments under the School of Medicine should submit the Retention Offer Justification Form (School of Medicine) through School leadership for approval.
Determining an appropriate salary
HR Compensation will recommend a salary range based on a variety of factors, which include, but are not limited to the desired retention offer salary, the employee’s relevant education and skills, and available budget.