Compensation Administration and Legal Issues

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Discussion questions can be 1-3 paragraphs.

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8.1 Discussion question:

To what extent are people paid equal wages for equal work, in the United States? If you find that we fall short of this standard, as a society, what will it take to get there?

8.2 Discussione question:

How a company pays its employees speaks volumes about what’s important to the company and how it values its human resources. Using resources from this class and your own experiences, explain what compensation can communicate and why “pay messages” matter?”

  • Unit 8 – Compensation Administration and Legal Issues

    In the U.S., government legislation affecting compensation reflects the changing nature of work and the workforce. In the 1930s, legislation was concerned with correcting the harsh conditions and arbitrary treatment facing employees, including children. In the 1960s, legislation turned to the issue of equal opportunity. Such legislation has had a profound impact on all of U.S. society. However, some believe that more progress to eliminate discrimination in the workplace, including pay discrimination, is required. Contemporary issues include treatment of the recent waves of immigrants. Recent attention has shifted to increasing the transparency of compensation for executives and accounting for stock options.In Unit 8, we will focus on the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938, minimum wage legislation and equal pay for women. We will also focus on the management of compensation – managing labor costs, compensation budgeting at the company and department levels.

    • Determine why and how governments are involved in compensation
    • Describe how to make informed decisions on a variety of political issues involving compensation
    • Demonstrate the application of administering labor costs and compensation budgets


    • Read and review Unit 8 Readings and Activities
    • Actively participate in Unit 8 Discussion Forums
    • Complete: Course Survey (your feedback in critical and anonymous)

    Please note that the final postings for the discussion board for Unit 8 are due on Friday evening by 11:59 pm.

  • Readings and Resources

    CourseSmart Textbook:Milkovich, George T., Newman, J. M., & Gerhart, B. (2014). Compensation (11th ed.). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill.

    • Chapter 17 – Government and Legal Issues in Compensation
    • Chapter 18 – Management: Making it Work

    Articles & Websites:Monica Parpal, M.; Labor Cost Standards in the Food Industry:

    • This article provides an example of the types of labor costs employers can control in the restaurant business.

    Andre, C. & Velasquez, M. (n.d.). Comparable worth. Santa Clara University.

    • This article seeks to make a case in support of “Comparable Worth.”

    Reed, L. W. (1994, September). Comparable worth or incomparably worthless. Mackinac Center for Public Policy.

    • This article seeks to make a case against “Comparable Worth.”


    Watch VideoPresident Obama’s Play for Equal PayDuration: (6:58)
    User: Bloomberg TV – Added: 8/28/12URL:
    Watch VideoThe Evolving Compensation FunctionDuration: (7:10)
    User: worldatworktv – Added: 8/28/12YouTube URL:
    Use the following video to assist you with your response for Unit 8.1 DB: Equal Pay for Equal Work. This Bloomberg TV video seeks to address the widely reported and often politicized debate over equal pay for women. In this video compensation experts Cathy Peffen and Julie Griffin discuss results of a survey of the changing role of compensation and career advice for early-career professionals.

    Supplemental Resources:
    United States Department of Labor

    • The U.S. Department of Labor’s mission is “to foster, promote, and develop the welfare of the wage earners, job seekers, and retirees of the United States; improve working conditions; advance opportunities for profitable employment; and assure work-related benefits and rights.” This website provides information on relevant Federal laws, regulations, employment statistics and study reports on employment in the United States.

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