Compensation and Classification

Campus Address
121-11 USB
Mailing Address

121 University Services Building, Suite 11
Iowa City, IA 52242-1911
United States

The university has selected multiple reliable, well-established salary surveys to provide salary market data reflecting the markets in which we recruit and compete for Professional and Scientific talent. These includes:

  • Different geographical markets (national, regional, local),
  • Different business sectors (education, health care, general industry), and
  • Internal market comparisons (SEIU/AFSCME).

In order to get reliable information on a majority of university positions, a number of survey sources were identified. Whenever possible, multiple sources were used for a specific benchmark job, using data that most closely reflects our size, complexity, and geographic location.  A summary of the specific surveys used is provided below:


The Administrators in Higher Education Survey collects data on nearly 50,000 administrators in approximately 200 senior-level administrative positions from more than 1,000 higher education institutions. Data collected includes salary, gender, race/ethnicity, age, and years in position. The Professionals in Higher Education Survey collects data on more than 265,000 professionals in more than 400 positions from approximately 1,000 higher education institutions. Data collected includes salary, FLSA status (exempt or non-exempt), sex, race/ethnicity, age, and years in position.   The Staff in Higher Education Survey collects data from more than 750 higher education institutions on approximately 200,000 staff in approximately 150 staff positions (office/clerical, technical/paraprofessional, skilled craft, and service/maintenance). Data collected includes salary, sex, race/ethnicity, age and years in position. For our analysis, we focused specifically on the salary information from Big Ten Universities and other peer institutions within each survey.'s Comp Analyst tool is an online service that allows users to market price jobs by industry, geography, and organization size.  It also allows jobs to be blended when a specific job classification match isn't appropriate. This service is a significant expansion from the that is available to the public. The service that we are using is a special professional-grade compensation database that has been compiled using specialized salary surveys. The online library allows access to market price more than 15,000 unique job titles.

Mercer Benchmark

The Mercer Metro Benchmark survey is for general industry and our analysis focuses on the North Central region of the United States. It is recognized by compensation professionals as a leading survey to determine salary levels for employees. This survey covers more than 3,000 positions in approximately 20 different job families from more than 3,000 organizations. The results allow for market refinements such as industry super sector, employee work location, net sales revenue, and full-time equivalents.


This nationwide survey collects Total Cash Compensation data for over 500 professional, managerial and director-level staff positions specific to higher-education institutions. This survey provides national salary information for selected positions. 

Towers Watson Professional

The Professional Administrative and Sales survey provides salary information for non-management and administrative positions in more than 300 different job families. The Professional Technical and Operations survey provides salary information for non-management and administrative positions in approximately 150 different job families. The focus is on IT, supply chain and other specialized professional classifications. The data is reported at multiple levels of responsibility and experience within each job family.


Compdata BenchmarkPro survey provides access to executive and general staff compensation data from more than 2,600 organizations across industries. This is a national, general industry survey.  Compdata Colleges and Universities survey results provide a comprehensive look at salary information for more than 900 job titles across the campus, including Faculty administration, higher education, and general staff positions.

Association of Performing Arts Presenters (APAP)

This survey provides salary information for Arts, Culture and Entertainment job classifications and comes from a consortium of 21 United States university presenting organizations. The consortium was formed in 2002 to share best practices and information, organize joint projects, provide a format for peer to peer contact and advocate for the role of performing arts presenters in major research universities.

Association of University Technology Managers (AUTM)

The AUTM Salary Survey is the most comprehensive survey for academic technology transfer professional positions. This survey assesses 10 common professional positions from over 100 organizations. 

Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC)

This survey collects information about compensation for administrative positions in basic and clinical science departments, as well as interdisciplinary centers, which include cancer centers and clinical and translational science award programs. Ninety-one medical schools reported compensation data for over 1,800 administrators.  Information is separated by Public and Private medical schools.

Council of Teaching Hospitals and Health Systems (COTH)

This survey contains data from over 200 health care organizations covering over 275 positions.  Almost all professional level medical center positions are surveyed. The survey has multiple modules with salary information for both multiple hospital systems and single facilities.  The analysis is summarized by organization size and geographic area.

Division 1A Athletic Directors Compensation Survey

Athletics Departments throughout the country participate in an annual survey of over 150 professional, administrative and coaching positions. For our analysis, we focused specifically on the salary information from Big Ten Universities and other peer institutions.

Association of Research Libraries

The Association of Research Libraries (ARL) analyzes salary data for all professional staff working in over 120 ARL member libraries covering over 1,000 professional staff in more than 100 university ARL libraries.

National Association of College and University Attorneys

The NACUA survey provides salary information for attorneys in higher education. There are breakdowns for types of institutions, geographic regions, operating budgets, enrollments, total employees, and more.