Sixty-four percent of employers use market-based salary structures rather than traditional pay structures at 23 percent and broadband structures at 12 percent, both of which were once popular, according to the 2012 Survey of Salary Structure Policies and Practices, a new study by WorldatWork and Deloitte.

"Compared to prior survey results we have seen an upward trend of organizations using market-based structures over traditional structures," says Kerry Chou, a Certified Compensation Professional and practice leader for WorldatWork. "Market-based structures have struck a chord with organizations because they combine the more well-defined parameters of a traditional structure with the range spread flexibility of broad bands."

Most respondents report keeping salary structures, competitive positioning and frequency of updates consistent; however, variation by job function, job level, critical work force segment, or geography is not rare. Even 37 percent of respondents say they rely on multiple types of structures by job level while 30 percent of respondents base it on geographic location.

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