Stories from our Compensation & Rewards Practice
OBSOLETE PLAN: A Story of Creating Alignment and Reducing Exposure
Situation: The old compensation plan had been in place for ten years without being updated and the utility was threatened by a discrimination suit. InTandem intervened and determined that the hierarchy of jobs did not reflect present reality. Some positions were doing more and compensated inadequately and the utility was not rewarding efforts where the business practices were going.
Outcome: Aligning market competitive strategy and internal equity, InTandem created an equitable and defensible plan that satisfies regulators, auditors, employees, rate payers, and the board.
NO PLAN: A Story of Boosting Morale Linking Pay to Performance
Situation: The client had no compensation plan in place, only informal comparisons without structured market data. With several on the management team soon to retire and new employees coming on board, the utility needed a fresh market tool and a way to link pay to individual achievement.
Outcome: In developing the compensation plan, InTandem identified their key performance competencies and built a strong correlation in the plan for pay to performance. Throughout the utility, the plan created confidence in knowing it was based on fairness. Additionally, the plan boosted morale because of its strong foundation of linking pay to individual achievement.
SUCCESSION PLANNING: A Story of a Utility at Risk
Situation: One utility engaged InTandem to assist with succession planning. After interviews, surveying and analysis, InTandem determined that the truly critical issue was salary compression. Executive compensation was actually less than that of many of the hourly staff and out of par with market value. If the disparity was left unaddressed, several of the senior leaders were considering departing, thus leaving the utility at risk.
Outcome: InTandem created a fair and equitable compensation structure and devised a corresponding succession and knowledge management plan. InTandem’s approach boosted morale among the executive staff and provided the board a true plan to manage succession, recruit new talent, and steward the long-term viability of the utility.
Without good, solid information a plan is nearly impossible to develop, much less fulfill. For 20 years as CEO with two cooperatives, I've had the opportunity to work with experts on various aspects of development. For the majority of those years I have relied on the solid advice and skill of Winston Tan. Whether the need has been for employee development, a long term wage & salary plan or Board growth, I have often depended on Winston's creative resourcefulness and broad corporate knowledge to help find ways to move forward. Often he has helped us through multi-year plans that have facilitated the cooperative's evolution.–Tom Stackhouse - President / CEO, Central Alabama Electric Cooperative, Prattville, AL
Several years ago Cumberland EMC asked Winston Tan to update its 30-year Compensation Plan, which used outdated criteria for evaluating positions and did not take into account technological advances in the utility industry. The updated plan provides an avenue to add new positions and compensate employees equitably with market values. I heartily recommend Mr. Tan's services and know you will be pleased with the knowledge and professionalism he brings to his areas of expertise.–Lynne Wilson - Manager, Administrative Division, Cumberland EMC, Clarksville, TN
I consider one of the most significant challenges facing co-op CEO’s today is the ability to attract and retain key personnel. Winston’s presentation of factual and justifiable data to support competitive compensation strategies has taken CVEA a long way toward the direction we sorely needed in light of the changing industry..–Robert A. Wilkinson - CEO, Copper Valley Electric Association, Glenallen, AK
We first engaged Winston Tan and InTandem when we needed help in developing a new and up-to-date compensation plan. Winston was very easy to work with and the process went smoothly, culminating in speedy board approval. We have now engaged InTandem to help develop a performance management plan to coincide with the new compensation plan. We look forward to the process and anticipate great results.–Norma Tomak - Vice President of Human Resources, South Central Indiana REMC, Martinsville, IN