From the Inbox: Who approves reclassification requests?

A question from my Inbox (feel free to ask your own, click here)

Hi Adam,

A question: We’re reviewing our policies at the moment, and this came up: Should the Manager-once-Removed have a role in assessing role reclassification requests?  Any light you can shed appreciated.

Hey there,

The answer is: the MoR is not just involved, they actually make the decision!  Because in a well-designed hierarchy, the MoR is the supplier of resources (in this case, salary budget) to the Manager of the person making the request (I’m assuming the request takes the Manager out of agreed budget limits).

Let’s take a typical hierarchy of Specialist – Senior Manager – General Manager.

The mental leap here is that it’s the Senior Manager requesting the reclassification based on a recommendation from the Specialist. The Specialist is providing advice on how more could be delivered (or is actually being delivered) and the resourcing required, the Senior Manager agrees, and it’s the General Manager, as the Manager-once-Removed to the Specialist, who makes the decision.  This is because they are the supplier of resources (salary) to the Senior Manager.

The Senior Manager says something like this to their GM: “This is what I can deliver with more funding; the funding would go to a reclassification of Jim’s role.”

You could draw the analogy to the Senior Manager asking for funding for an upgraded piece of technology to deliver more, but remember people have feelings, so don’t get carried away with this comparison (unless you’ve got Sarah Connor in your team).