Flexible Pay


A program that allows Finance and Operations flexibility in compensating non-organized Professional & Scientific (P&S) staff for extra meritorious performance.  There are two types of awards: (1) Exceptional Performance Award and (2) SPOT Performance Award (on the spot).  Flexible pay should not be used as a substitute for providing ongoing base adjustments that assure equitable and competitive salaries. 

Award Criteria:

  • Departments will be responsible for funding flexible pay awards.
  • All regular, non-organized P&S employees are eligible for flex pay if they meet established criteria.
  • Employees must have an appointment of 50% or greater.
  • Flexible pay may be awarded for exceptional performance which may include, but not limited to, rewarding a variety of outcomes and behaviors, e.g. expanded scope of duties, completion of a major project, extraordinary performance, development of significant new initiatives, cost savings and/or revenue generation.
  • An employee must have been employed at The University of Iowa in a regular position for six months to be eligible for an Exceptional Performance Award. There is no minimum employment period required for SPOT Performance Awards.
  • An employee must have a current (within the past 12 months) overall above average performance evaluation. 
  • An employee must have received or is expected to receive at least the average July 1st salary increase for the department to be eligible for flexible pay, barring extenuating circumstances that must be documented.
  • Flexible pay will be awarded in the form of a lump sum payment that is not added to the base salary.
  • Flexible pay awards must be supervisor initiated.
  • The supervisor will receive a copy of the nomination form which includes approval or denial action.
  • Awards will not be approved without DEO endorsement.

Exceptional Performance Award

  • An employee may receive up to 10% of his/her salary in flexible pay per fiscal year.  If the recommended award for any single award is over $5000.00, the recommendation must be reviewed and approved by University Compensation and Classification.  If a second recommendation for the same employee is received in the same fiscal year, and the cumulative amount is over $5000.00 it must be reviewed and approved by University Compensation and Classification.
  • All awards must be approved at the departmental level and forwarded through workflow to the office of the Senior Vice President.
  • Nominations will be accepted from July 1 through June 30.
  • No more than 10% of Finance and Operations non-organized P&S staff will receive an Exceptional Performance award in a fiscal year.
  • An employee may receive an Exceptional Performance Award a maximum of two times per year.

Spot Awards

  • SPOT awards may be dispersed at any point throughout the fiscal year.
  • SPOT awards of $75.00 or less (de minimus awards) may be awarded up to 4 times per fiscal year to the same employee with a minimum of 30 working days separation.
  • All awards must be approved at the departmental level and forwarded through Workflow to the Senior Vice President’s office for approval.
  • The fields that were previously required on the SPOT Award nomination form will now be incorporated as part of the online Special Compensation form in HR Transactions.