Overview

This directive describes how an employee's salary is determined when appointed, promoted, transferred, demoted, or given temporary or acting assignments. It also covers retroactive salary increases and regrading of a class.

* Salary Restraint (Alberta Public Service non-union employees) effective April 1, 2016 to March 31, 2022.

Appointment

A person appointed to a position will be paid within the pay grade, salary range, pay band (example Executive Manager I, Band 3) or pay zone (example Manager, Zone 2) of the assigned classification of that position, as determined by the deputy head. The following factors will determine the appointment salary:

  • previous salary
  • qualifications
  • salary relationship to subordinates, peers, and supervisor
  • budget implications

Promotion

An employee appointed to a position assigned a classification with a higher maximum salary will be paid within the new pay grade, salary range, pay band (example Executive Manager II, Band 4), or pay zone (example Senior Manager, Zone 2) effective the date of promotion.

The employee’s current base salary is to be used when setting salary upon promotion, exclusive of any market modifier, over-range pay, contract modifier, and premium pay (allowances, shift differential, overtime, etc.).

Upon promotion, an employee will receive a salary increase based on the employment group and percentages outlined below.

Bargaining Unit Employees

An employee promoted to a classification with a higher maximum salary will receive a one-increment increase in salary.

The one-increment increase is calculated by moving from one step (“period” as defined in the collective agreement) to the next within the same pay grade, or by moving 2 pay grades higher to the same step.

When a bargaining unit employee moves from a classification with no pay grade assignment to a classification with a pay grade, the salary will be placed at a step in the new grade that provides a minimum 4% increase.

A bargaining unit employee will receive a 4% increase when promoted to an opted out and excluded classification, and an 8% increase when promoted to a management classification.

Position Exempt Employees

An employee within a bargaining unit classification that is exempt from the union and is being promoted to a classification with a higher maximum salary will receive a one-increment increase in salary.

A position exempt employee will receive a 4% increase when promoted to an opted out and excluded classification, and an 8% increase when promoted to a management classification.

Opted Out and Excluded Employees (Schedule 1 part 2-A and part 2-B)

An opted out and excluded employee promoted to a classification with a higher maximum salary will receive a 4% increase, or 8% increase when promoted to a management classification.

When an opted out and excluded employee is promoted to a bargaining classification with a pay grade, the salary will be placed at a step in the new grade that provides a minimum 4% increase.

Management Employees

A management employee promoted to classification with a higher maximum salary will receive a salary increase of 4% for a zone-to-zone change (example Senior Manager, Zone 1 to Senior Manager, Zone 2) or 8% for band-to-band change (example Executive Manager I, Band 3 to Executive Manager II, Band 4).

Anniversary Date Consideration Upon Promotion

An employee with service of 6 months or more toward the next scheduled increase* on their anniversary date should receive their merit or in-range adjustment if performance was satisfactory as determined by the deputy head.

  • Bargaining Unit of one-increment
  • Management up to 3% within the range*
  • Opted Out and Excluded 4% within the range*
  • Position Exempt of one-increment*

* Not to be considered for non-union (Management, Opted Out and Excluded, Excluded Administrative Support and Position Exempt) employees due to the salary restraint in effect for April 1, 2016 to March 31, 2022.

Exceptions

In exceptional circumstances and with approval from the Public Service Commission, the deputy head may provide an employee with a higher promotional increase based on the following factors:

  • salary relationship to subordinates, and peers
  • market conditions
  • qualifications

Transfer

An employee will continue to be paid the same salary if they are appointed to a position assigned a classification with the same maximum salary as their current position.

Demotion

Non-management employees

When an employee is demoted on the deputy head's authority to a position assigned a classification with a lower maximum salary, their salary will be protected over-range until it falls within the salary range of the new classification.

A non-management employee's salary will be reduced immediately to at least the maximum of the lower classification if the demotion is the result of a voluntary or disciplinary action.

If an employee is demoted for the mutual benefit of the department and the employee, but this would result in the employee's salary being protected over-range at an unreasonably high level for the work performed, the department may assign a lower salary.

When an employee's current salary does not match a step in the pay grade of the newly assigned classification, the employee's salary will be maintained between steps until the next salary increase. The new salary will then be at a step in the pay grade that ensures a one-increment increase. The maximum salary for the pay grade will not be exceeded.

Management employees

An employee demoted to a position assigned a classification with a lower maximum salary will be paid within the pay band (example Executive Manager, Band 3) or pay zone (example Senior Manager, Zone 1) unless the deputy head approves otherwise as set out in the directive Over-Range Pay.

A management employee's salary will be reduced immediately to at least the maximum of the lower classification if the demotion is the result of a voluntary or disciplinary action.

Temporary assignment

When an employee is assigned to a higher level position for a temporary period (for developmental or other purposes), the deputy head may authorize a salary adjustment for the temporary assignment according to promotional guidelines. All benefits are affected by this pay change for the duration of the assignment. The employee's salary will be readjusted at the end of the assignment to the salary the employee would have been receiving had the assignment not occurred.

Acting assignment

When an employee is required to perform the principal duties of a higher classification full time, the deputy head will authorize a salary modifier to reflect a temporary salary increase within the pay grade, salary range, pay band (example Executive Manager I, Band 3) or pay zone (example Senior Manager, Zone 1) of the higher classification.

The following percentages determine the temporary salary modifier, which cannot exceed the maximum of the pay grade, salary range, pay band or pay zone of the assigned classification.

  • Bargaining Unit and Position Exempt employees: one increment; or 4% if acting against an opted out and excluded position
  • Opted Out and Excluded employees: 4%; or if acting against a bargaining unit classification with a pay grade, the salary will be placed at a step in the new grade that provides a minimum 4% increase.
  • Management employees: 4% from zone-to-zone change (example Manager, Zone 1 to Manager, Zone 2); or 8% from band-to-band change (example Executive Manager I, Band 3 to Executive Manager II, Band 4)

When acting against a management position, opted out and excluded, bargaining unit and position exempt employees will receive an 8% increase.

The employee must earn at least the minimum of the pay grade, salary range, pay band (example Executive Manager I, Band 3) or pay zone (example Manager, Zone 2) of the higher classification position.

The employee must meet the Minimum Recruitment Standards of the higher classification for the position. No more than one employee can act against the same position at the same time.

A non-management employee is required to act for a minimum of 5 consecutive work days, and a management employee a minimum of 30 consecutive calendar days. The deputy head may authorize a lump sum payment instead of a salary modifier for a management employee.

Acting pay is effective retroactively from the first day the employee performs the higher duties and goes until the last day the employee is required to perform the higher-level duties. Acting pay is considered pensionable salary.

The employee's classification level will not change when the acting assignment is for 12 months or less. Anniversary dates will not change during an acting assignment that does not exceed 12 months. If an anniversary date occurs during the acting assignment and a merit increase is granted, the acting salary will be reviewed to determine if an adjustment is required.

An employee on authorized vacation leave during an acting assignment will continue to receive acting pay, provided no other employee is receiving acting pay for the same position. An employee on an acting assignment for less than 12 months will continue to receive acting pay for a maximum of 22 consecutive work days during sick leave or other leaves, provided no other employee is receiving acting pay for the same position.

For acting assignments that exceed 12 months, the employee should be placed into a temporary position. When on a temporary assignment the classification, salary and benefits will align to the duties being performed. The anniversary date will change to the effective date of the acting assignment. At the end of the assignment, the employee will return to their base position; and their classification, salary, benefits, and the anniversary date will be adjusted to reflect the level the employee would have reached had the temporary assignment never occurred.

Retroactivity

The deputy head may authorize a retroactive salary increase in the form of a lump sum payment for an employee who has terminated or resigned and has requested such payment in writing. In the case of retirement or death, the retroactive increase in the form of a lump sum payment will be paid automatically to the employee or to the employee’s estate, and any pension or other payment will be adjusted accordingly. For more information, see directive Salary Calculation.

Re-grading

The Public Service Commissioner will issue instructions on salary implementation when a classification is re-graded or revised.

About this directive

Authority: Public Service Act
Public Service Employment Regulation (PDF, 1.1 MB)
Application: Organizations under the Public Service Act
Effective Date: March 25, 2021
Contact: Alberta Public Service Commission:
Strategic Services and Public Agency Secretariat, Workforce Policy, Total Compensation and Job Evaluation Policy