Revelation of Brandeis president’s pay raises questions about compensation

Every year, news stories regarding executives’ pay raise eyebrows, but that is especially the case for universities and non-profit organizations. A lot of this is due to the fact that these institutions greatly rely on donations for funding and these resources are intended to cover the cost of operations and the programs these entities offer.

Recently, information on former president emeritus Jehuda Reinharz of Brandeis University came to light. After Reinharz stepped down from his position as the institution’s president full-time in 2010, the university paid him over $287,500 per year to be a part-time president, on top of receiving more than $800,000 in deferred sabbatical compensation, the Boston Globe reported.

In fact, Brandeis’ payments to the second-longest serving president are expected to last until 2016. Total compensation is estimated to be more than $8 million.

“Instead of disclosing it in 2016, we are disclosing it now,” Brandeis spokeswoman Ellen de Graffenreid told the Globe.

It is common practice for senior staff members to receive such compensation packages after working at one company for many years, but Brandeis specifically has long stood for social justice — such was also expected from the school’s current administration. Once news got around about Reinharz’s payment schedule, alumni and students protested.

Although there is not much the university can do to change Reinharz’s allowance, Eric Chasalow of the faculty senate said that he expects change to happen in the coming years, One of initiatives will include dedicating a staff member to determining compensation packages for executive employees.

“There will be true transparency in the process of determining compensation,” Chasalow added.

Within any business organization, having a clear understanding of compensation and other human resources policies are important. HR software solutions can be a valuable resource for companies that need to centralize information in one location for all staff members.

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