Show Me the Money: Compensation at CEL
(4 pages of text)
In 2018, the leaders of Cisca Engineering Ltd. (CEL), a small engineering firm in Waterloo, Ontario, faced a decision about whether to go beyond their normal pay scale in order to hire a mechanical engineering candidate they desperately wanted. The company was struggling to attract top talent since its normal base salary capabilities were thought to be lower than those of larger firms. Considering the trade-offs, the company president weighed the potentially negative effect on overall employee morale with the advantages of having a needed new employee. Should he offer the candidate the pipe stress analyst position at a lower salary and risk being turned down? Should he offer the salary the candidate wanted and risk upsetting his other employees if they found out? Should he revamp his compensation system and increase salary levels for all of the company’s engineers?
This case can be used in an undergraduate-level course on human resources management, organizational behaviour, or compensation. The case provides background information, including compensation data for the company’s employees and the external market and a total rewards statement that the company sends its employees annually. Students are given sufficient information to perform an analysis and make a recommendation regarding the desirable job candidate and the overall compensation and reward system at the company. After working through the case and assignment questions, students will have developed their ability to do the following:
- Apply theoretical concepts associated with pay equity to an actual employment situation.
- Describe total rewards model components that might be offered by a company.
- Analyze and interpret compensation data in order to make a recommendation regarding a prospective employee’s compensation request, and identify the consequences associated with the recommended course of action.
- Develop a comprehensive action plan that will support an effective compensation system.
Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services
Canada, Small, 2018
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