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State Management Personnel Manual

0800 Classification and Compensation



.110 Purpose

.111 The Classification and Compensation Program is administered as a blend of centralized and decentralized decision making. To facilitate decentralized decision making, the Director of the Division of Classification and Compensation administers a Decentralized Classification Program (Title Decentralization) that authorizes agencies to classify or reclassify positions in decentralized titles.

.112 Title Decentralization refers to those titles, typically with classification standards, which have been approved for decentralization. A limited number of titles, without classification standards, with mostly seasonal positions are on the decentralized listing. Decentralized titles are identified on the Title and Salary Plan under the Decentralization Level (Decntrl Lv) column and are broken up into two groups:

  1. "U" indicates that a title is "universally" decentralized. Positions in such titles can be established by all authorized agencies without pre-audit by the Division of Classification and Compensation.
  2. "S" indicates that a title is a "specifically" decentralized for certain agencies, typically those that have or had positions in the title in the previous 12 months of the date of the request.
  3. Transactions in "U" and "S" decentralized titles will be automatically approved if the standard attributes (e.g., Salary Grade, Jurisdictional Class and Negotiating Unit) of the titles are requested and the transactions meet all other conditions for the requested agency.


.210 Title Decentralization

.211 Authorized agencies can submit classification (NYSTEP Form 4N) or reclassification (NYSTEP Form 4R) requests for decentralized titles that will by-pass the Division of Classification and Compensation (Decentralized Transactions). These decentralized transactions are subject to the limitations and responsibilities noted in Subsection .230 below.

.212 Agencies may request the addition of titles to the decentralized listing if such titles have current classification standards.

.213 To participate in the decentralization program, agencies must have a human resources professional who is certified by the Division of Classification and Compensation to sign off on decentralized transactions. That individual must meet all training requirements established by the Division of Classification and Compensation.

.214 Participating agencies, in effect, make classification and reclassification determinations to selected classes, but do not reallocate classes, establish new titles, approve employee applications, or authorize any Salary Differentials [See SPMM Section 0870].

.215 No class that is unique to an agency may be used under this program by another agency unless the title has been approved in that agency by the Division of Classification and Compensation.

.220 Limitations on "Decentralized" Transactions

.221 If the requested position is in an atypical organizational context, the agency must attach sufficient documentation to explain the classification. If the requested title is new to the agency, or other than the standard attributes (e.g., Negotiating Unit or Jurisdictional Class) of a title are being requested, the request will be pre-audited by the Division of Classification and Compensation under the guidelines in SPMM Section 0850.

.222 Decentralized transactions, which are automatically approved, are reviewed on a post-audit basis. The Division of Classification and Compensation reserves the right to rescind inappropriate transactions or earmark improperly classified positions.

.230 Agency Responsibilities

.231 At a minimum, a duties description must be attached to all decentralized transactions. For decentralized transactions that require more than a duties description, the following documentation also must be attached in NYSTEP:

  1. An agency justification letter detailing the reason for the classification or reclassification and an analysis of the action.
  2. The organizational context of the position.
  3. An attestation (see below) by an HR professional certified by the Division of Classification and Compensation.


I, ___________, attest that I have reviewed the duties of this position and have determined that they are consistent with those described in the classification standard and/or other properly classified positions in the class.

Such certification may be included at the bottom of the duties description or a separate document (see sample template).

The Duties Only column on the Title and Salary Plan will indicate the minimum documentation required. If a "Y" is listed for a title, NYSTEP will require that a duties description be attached. If the field is "N", NYSTEP will require a duties description and agency justification.

.232 Agencies should bear in mind that submitting only the minimum required documents may be insufficient to fully explain a transaction. In such cases, agencies should provide sufficient documentation to demonstrate to the Division of Classification and Compensation the appropriateness of the request.

.233 To comply with State Internal Controls, agencies must maintain a reviewable record to support each decentralized transaction. To meet this requirement, agencies are strongly encouraged to attach all relevant documents to the applicable transaction in NYSTEP to facilitate post-audit of such transaction.

.240 Audits 

.241 Staff of the Division of Classification and Compensation conducts periodic audits of decentralized transactions to evaluate the appropriateness of classification actions and the adequacy of the submitted documents.

.242 All transactions in non-decentralized titles will be pre-audited. Transactions in "U" or "S" decentralized titles will also be pre-audited if they do not meet the requirements for automatic approval.

.243 Staff of the Division of Classification and Compensation audits a percentage of automatically approved decentralized transactions each month. Audited transactions will be flagged to indicate that they have been audited. Deficiencies discovered because of a post-audit will be communicated to the responsible agency.

.250 Review, Reassessment, and Rescission

.251 The administrative classification flexibility afforded an agency may be revoked by the Director of the Division of Classification and Compensation if an agency or certified HR professional fails to adhere to the program's requirements as outlined herein.

Replaces Sections 0830; 0840; 0850(B); 0850(D); 0870; 0870(A); 0870(B); 0870(C); 0870(E); 0870(F) -  Dated August, 2008
Replaces 0860 - Dated December 18, 2014

Issued: August 6, 2018

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