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Background: The widespread institution of job evaluation by industry during and immediately following World War II was an important moment in the history of wage determination. Equal pay for equal work is the very essence of job evaluation, with work considered equal if it requires equal skill, equal effort, and equal responsibility and is performed under equal working conditions. The ultimate objective of job evaluation is to achieve internal wage consistency (internal equity).
Aim: The research work examined the status of Job evaluation and wage structure in a tertiary health institution in Abuja, Nigeria.
Methodology: This was a descriptive, cross-sectional hospital-based study involving 329 healthcare workers of the University of Abuja Teaching Hospital, Abuja: a tertiary health institution in North Central Nigeria. The opinions of all cadres of permanent staff within the institution were sought and collated using a structured questionnaire: sample size was determined using the Krejcie and Morgan formula and the sampled population (respondents) recruited using stratified sampling technique. The data were collated on excel spreadsheet and analysed using IBM SPSS version 21, with descriptive and regression statistics set at a p-value of 0.05.
Results: A total of 329 health workers participated in the study: 52.7% of them were males, while 47.3% were females. Job evaluation promotes internal pay equity in university of Abuja Teaching Hospital, Gwagwalada, Abuja: 53.8% of respondents are in agreement while 16.7% are undecided. This finding is statistically significant at a p-value of 0.043; all the cadres of staff are significantly in agreement. Job evaluation is a prerequisite for equal pay for work of equal value in an organization: 72.9% of respondents are in agreement while 11.2% are undecided. This finding is statistically significant at a p-value of 0.002; all the cadres of staff are significantly in agreement. Job evaluation is a veritable tool used in collective bargaining: 80.20% are in agreement while 8.8% are undecided. This finding is statistically significant at a p-value of 0.001; all the cadres are significantly in agreement. Job evaluation affects pay structure in the institution: as 62.3% of respondents are in agreement while 11 .9% are undecided. This finding is statistically significant at a P-value of 0.001; all the cadres are significantly in agreement. Generally, the research findings were in conformity with existing body of knowledge and further buttressed necessity for job evaluation and wage policy within the health institution.
Conclusion: Job evaluation is fundamental to an effective and efficient wage/salary administration. It will provide the information required to design and maintain equitable and defensible grade and pay structures. Furthermore, Job evaluation is a prerequisite to determination of a credible salary scale that will bridge the gap in wage differentials and irregularities of Nigerian health workers and may be an antidote to industrial disharmony and frequent strikes by respective unions (NAHAP, NAMLS, NANM, NARD, NMA, JOHESU etc.). Almost all the workers belief that the current salary/wage structure could be harmonized, thus, a harmonized or unified health salary structure can be the key that will unlock the gate to peaceful coexistence and industrial harmony among professionals within the health sector.
Keywords: Job evaluation, salary determination, wage differentials, pay equity, industrial harmony