Recommendations for Faculty Salaries

FAC Proposals for 2001-2002

Long Range Goals for Faculty Salaries
To: University Budget Council
From: Faculty Affairs University Policy Committee
Re: Recommendations for Faculty Salaries
Date: October 3, 2000

The Faculty Affairs University Policy Committee has studied faculty salaries for many years now and we find that, in spite of its best efforts, Santa Clara University not been successful in raising faculty salaries relative to those of our major competitor universities. The University’s market position has basically remained unchanged at what we consider relatively low salaries given the quality of SCU compared to the other institutions in our reference group. The 1% to 2% of the salary base that has typically been allocated as equity and market adjustment has been insufficient to achieve our goal of raising SCU salaries relative to those of other universities. This suggests that a much greater effort must be undertaken if we in fact seek to match salaries at institutions similar to SCU.

The lack of progress in raising salaries relative to other universities is particularly a problem in the current economic climate. The high cost of living in the Bay Area as well as the possibility of highly remunerated employment outside the university setting has created a near-crisis situation in recruiting and retaining faculty. Since the faculty are the lifeblood of the university, this must be seen as challenging the very foundation of SCU as a high quality institution. We see a substantial increase in faculty salaries as imperative and believe the University must respond with some degree of urgency.

The attached exhibits provide data on faculty salaries at 10 California institutions that admit the largest number of undergraduate applicants in common with Santa Clara, have a comparable array of disciplines as Santa Clara, and provide standardized salary data to the College and University Personnel Association ((CUPA). Since competitor groups for graduate admissions and faculty hiring differ widely by discipline, this group is the best approximation that can be used for institution-wide salary planning. Only California institutions were included in order to make comparisons as relevant as possible, given the wide differences in cost of living between states. However, it should be kept in mind that the cost of living in the Bay Area is significantly higher than that in many of the areas where these institutions are located.

Exhibit A lists the 10 schools in our benchmark group and SCU and ranks them according to SAT scores. As can be seen, Santa Clara ranks 4th behind Stanford, UC Berkeley and UCLA.

Exhibit B lists faculty salaries by discipline and rank for the benchmark institutions and Santa Clara, illustrating where SCU falls in the distributions. In most cases, SCU ranks 6th or 7th.

Exhibit C provided the percentage increase and dollar cost of raising SCU salaries to achieve various target levels measured by percentiles in the distribution of salaries. It also gives estimates of the total cost to the University of achieving the targets.

Exhibit D compares the academic year 1998-1999 to 1999-2000. It provides SCU’s ranking in the benchmark group, the total dollar cost to the University, and the percentage increase in salaries necessary to achieve the 60th and 75th percentiles.

[PLEASE NOTE: Exhibits have not been attached. More recent salary data is available through other links.]

FAUPC Proposals for the Academic Year 2001-2002

  • Salary increases in 2001-2002 should be significantly higher than in recent years both in order to redress Santa Clara’s past lack of success in raising salaries relative to its competitors and to provide a strong signal to faculty that the University is serious about addressing this problem. The FAUPC recommends that $1 million be allocated for market and equity salary adjustments for tenured and tenure-track faculty for the academic year 2001-2002.
  • The funds should be allocated in such a way the average salaries in all ranks and disciplines match at a minimum the median of those of our benchmark institutions. In order to meet this goal, approximately $785,000 is required. The remainder of the funds should be allocated to tenure and tenure-track faculty in order to address both market and equity concerns. Faculty in ranks and disciplines where salaries are particularly low relative to the benchmark institutions should receive the largest salary increases. At the same time, in the interest of equity, faculty in lower paid areas should receive relatively higher salary increases due to the difficulties of living in the high cost of living areas surrounding the University.
  • The University will also need to address the additional difficulties faced by the professional schools in recruiting and attracting faculty who have opportunities in the private sector.



Long-Range Goals for Faculty Salaries: (as recommended by the Faculty Affairs Committee and adopted by the University Budget Council in spring 2001)

  • The University should commit to achieving a given target range of salaries in the benchmark group. We believe that a reasonable target for SCU salaries would rank SCU fourth in the distribution of salaries of the benchmark institutions. The top three institutions are prestigious research universities that would be expected to remunerate faculty at relatively high rates. On the other hand, the other seven institutions are either of lower academic quality or located in regional areas with much lower cost of living or both.
  • We recommend SCU set salary targets to achieve approximately the 60th to 75th percentile of the benchmark salary distribution, which would put us approximately in the fourth or fifth position in the ordinal ranking.
  • We further recommend that the University seek to raise salaries toward the high end of this range. This is warranted by the high cost of living in the vicinity of SCU and our desire to recruit and retain the very best faculty. In addition, institutional practices at SCU result in keeping faculty at the Associate level longer than at many other institutions. This means that given their length of service, salaries of Associate and Full Professors would appear lower relative to the benchmark group if we had data to adjust for years of service.
  • The University should commit to a specified time period to achieve the target range. We believe that 5 years is a reasonable time frame.
  • The University Budget Committee should draw up a financial plan this year to achieve the long-term goal of raising SCU salaries to match the 60th to 75th percentile of our benchmark institutions.
Faculty Salary Policy