Salary Recommendations for Congregational Staff
Salary Recommendations for Congregational Staff
Six UU ministers stand together.

The UUA provides Salary Recommendations to assist you in offering appropriate pay to your employees. They should guide, but not limit, congregational compensation decisions. Our intent is to help you attract and retain excellent staff, as well to urge you to be a faithful employer—one whose compensation and other staffing practices align with your mission and values as a Unitarian Universalist congregation.

Need Help?

We are here to help, as are your regional Compensation Consultants.

Guidance for Using UUA Salary Recommendations

  • Guide to Salary Recommendations (PDF): This resource will assist you in understanding and using the Salary Recommendations in your specific context.
  • Strategies for Setting Staff Salaries: View these slides from a webinar presented by Jan Gartner. Topics include Compensation Program history, development of Salary Recommendations, using Recommendations, complications and challenges, and sources of support.

Salary Recommendations and Related Resources

  • Capsule Job Descriptions (PDF) are brief job summaries for common staff positions in UU congregations, for use with UUA Salary Recommendations. Use the best-fit capsule description for each position, regardless of the job title in your congregation.

​Geo Index Listing 

(The Geo Index is based on cost of wages, not cost of living.)

UUA Salary Recommendations for 2020-2021

We anticipate posting our 2020-2021 Salary Recommendations and related materials in January 2020. Here we provide some preliminary information:

  • Preservation of purchasing power is a fundamental compensation principle. Based on recent Consumer Price Index information, a pay increase of 1.8% is needed to maintain the typical employee's purchasing power over the next year. Please keep this in mind as you budget for staff salaries in the coming year.
  • Midpoints for all positions at all sizes will increase at least 2%, in keeping with recent and projected changes in church and nonprofit wage structures. We expect that some positions will be adjusted as much as 5% to better reflect the most recent data.
  • We are adjusting minimum salaries for all positions and sizes so that they are no more than 15% below their respective midpoints.

UUA Salary Recommendations for 2019-2020

  • Salary Recommendations have increased by 1.8% for 2019-2020. This is an important factor to take into consideration when adjusting salaries for continuing staff.
  • Although all of our salary guidelines are consistent with the federal minimum wage, some salaries may not meet all state and local wage laws. Please be aware of minimum and living wage laws in your area.
  • We have added a Director of Finance and Administration job for Midsize III and above, with a salary 10% higher than Business Administrator. See Capsule Job Descriptions.

Salary Charts

UUA Salary Recommendations for 2018-2019

Although all of our salary guidelines are consistent with the federal minimum wage, it is possible that some salaries do not meet all state and local wage laws. Please be aware of minimum or living wage laws in your area.

Intern Ministers

For Guidance on salaries for ministerial interns, visit the Internship Clearinghouse.

About the Author

  • Jan is passionate about helping congregations live out their values within their walls! Her work is inspired by the mission of the UUA Office of Church Staff Finances: Guided by the values of our faith, we equip congregations for excellence as employers and their staff for financial competence and...

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