As the 2018 merit increase projections are being released, it is an opportune time to review your merit increase process.  The first step in assessing your merit process is to ensure that your salary ranges are updated and are still competitive with the external marketplace.  Thereafter, a merit increase matrix should be developed, which allows for differentiation in pay based on an individual’s performance and grade penetration.  A modeling analysis should be conducted in order to ensure that the total projected merit increases to employees aligns with the budget figures.  This provides documentation that all employees are treated simultaneously, equally, and fairly in the application of increases.