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MARADMINS

ADVANCE IN HIRE PAY SETTING AUTHORITY GUIDANCE

Date Signed: 5/17/2017
MARADMINS Active Number: 239/17

R 171931Z MAY 17
MARADMIN 239/17
MSGID/GENADMIN/CMC WASHINGTON DC MRA MP//
SUBJ/ADVANCE IN HIRE PAY SETTING AUTHORITY GUIDANCE//
REF/A/DOC/5 USC 5333//
REF/B/DOC/5 CFR 531//
REF/C/DOC/DODI WASHINGTON DC/18 MAY 2009//
REF/D/DOC/DON WASHINGTON DC/PAY ADMINISTRATION//
NARR/REF A IS 5 U.S.CODE 5333-MINIMUM RATE FOR NEW APPOINTMENTS. REF B IS TITLE 5 CODE OF FEDERAL REGULATIONS PART 531-PAY UNDER THE GENERAL SCHEDULE.  REF C IS (DOD) INSTRUCTION 1400.25 VOLUME 531-PAY UNDER THE GENERAL SCHEDULE.   REF D IS THE DON, CIVILIAN HUMAN
POC1/M.DELMEDICO/GS14/MPC/-/TEL: COM (703)784-9385/TEL: DSN 278-9385/EMAIL: MICHELLE.DELMEDICO@USMC.MIL./POC2/B.MOLINA/CIV/MPC/-/TEL: COM (703) 432-9823/DSN: 278-9823/EMAIL: BRENDA.MOLINA@USMC.MIL.//
GENTEXT/REMARKS/
1. Situation. In accordance with references (A) through (D) the Marine Corps allows Commands to request to set pay for newly-appointed federal civilian employees above the step 1 and up to the maximum step of the applicable grade because of the superior qualifications of the candidate or a special need of the Command for the candidate's services to meet mission requirements.
2. Coverage.  This program applies to all Marine Corps employees covered by the General Schedule (GS), Administratively Determined Pay Plan (AD), Federal Wage System (FWS), and demonstration projects conducted jointly by the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) and the Department of Defense (DoD). This instruction does not apply to the Senior Executive Service, positions above GS-15, or non-appropriated fund positions.
3. Policy.  It is the policy of the Marine Corps to appropriately use available compensation tools and funding to attract and retain skilled employees necessary for mission accomplishment.  The use of Superior Qualifications and Special Needs Authority (SQA) appointments should only be considered when necessary to recruit specific candidates who possess unusually high qualifications and/or unique experience.
4. Responsibilities.
a. Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Manpower and Reserve Affairs) (ASN(M&RA)) is responsible for the issuance of pay administration policy and delegations of authority in the Department of Navy (DON).
b. Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Civilian Human Resources) (DASN(CHR)) is responsible for the management and direction of the pay administration program in the DON and the issuance of directives on specific pay matters.
c. Director, Office of Civilian Human Resources (OCHR) is responsible to interpret changing statutory and regulatory guidance as it is received and will prepare implementing guidance as applicable.
d. USMC Director of Civilian Human Resources (DCHR) is responsible for setting policy and providing overall technical guidance and direction on civilian HR issues to command Human Resource Offices (HROs) and their satellite offices.  The DCHR monitors compliance with all statutes and regulations; and reports to DON and the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) as required.
e. HROs are responsible for ensuring that the policies and procedures regarding pay administration matters are in compliance with this instruction by:
1. Offering the candidate the step 01 of the grade of the position before considering use of the SQA.
2. Advising activity managers and supervisors on the proper execution of their pay and compensation management authorities and responsibilities.
3. Ensuring appropriate pay and compensation management training is provided to all individuals exercising delegated pay authority.
4. Assisting heads of commands and activities in conducting periodic self-assessments of their pay and compensation programs as well as ensuring request packages are complete and include defendable justifications.
5. Ensuring incentives are offered to a candidate only after eligibility has been verified, the SQA request package has been endorsed by MPC 10, and approved by the servicing OCHR Operations Center.
f. Managers and Supervisors are responsible for:
1. Complying with the legal authorities of pay administration at the local command level.
2. Ensuring actions are accomplished following applicable USMC/DON, DoD and OPM guidance and criteria, when exercising delegated pay authority.
3. Ensuring that pay and compensation are administered in a consistent, fair, business-based, and equitable manner in accordance with the merit systems principles.
g. Hiring/Selecting Officials must:
1. Consider all recruitment incentives available if the selected candidate declines an employment offer at the step 01 of the grade.  A decision to request an SQA to set a candidate’s pay higher than the step 01 of the grade must be based on the candidate’s superior qualifications not found in the other candidates and indicate how the selected candidate’s competencies clearly exceed those of the other candidates.
2. Document reason for using the higher pay rate instead of, or in addition to, a recruitment incentive.
3. Evaluate and consider other equally qualified candidates who would accept the position without an incentive.
4. Not discuss compensation flexibilities or incentives with the candidate.
5. Consider pay equity with the existing workforce performing similar work.
h. Hiring Official/HROs will ensure the request package includes:
1. The Superior Qualification or Special Needs Pay Setting Authority justification form.
2. The position description.
3. The application or resume of the individual.
4. Copy of the certificate of eligibles, including the announcement number, on which the proposed appointee’s name appears.
5. Documentation that supports claims of existing salary, bona fide employment offers, and any other information on the income considerations or qualifications for the selected candidate.
i. MPC-10 will:
1. Review all SQA request packages for endorsement prior to forwarding to OCHR Operations Center for approval.
2. Monitor the use of SQAs and other recruitment and retention incentives.
5. Action Required.  This guidance is to be implemented immediately by all USMC Regional HROs and Satellite Managers.
6. Release authorized by M. R.  Strobl, Director, Manpower Plans and Policy Division, Acting.//