Staff members in the Professional and higher categories are recruited internationally and are paid on the basis of salary scales applied worldwide, and established by the General Assembly of the United Nations on the recommendation of ICSC. A common job classification system developed by ICSC provides the structure for this salary scale.
The salary of staff in the Professional and higher categories is made up of two main elements: a base or floor (minimum) salary and post adjustment, both expressed in United States dollars. Post adjustment is a cost-of-living adjustment designed to preserve equivalent purchasing power for all duty stations.
The Professional and higher categories comprise five Professional grades (P-1 to P-5), two Director levels (D-1 and D-2), as well as the levels of Assistant Secretary-General and Under Secretary-General in some organizations and Assistant Director-General and Deputy DirectorGeneral in others. The scale, expressed as gross and net base salaries, is applied uniformly, worldwide, by all organizations in the common system.
Pursuant to article 11 (a) of its statute, ICSC establishes and reviews both headquarters methodology and non-headquarters methodology for surveys of best prevailing conditions of employment of General Service and other related categories.
While it is also responsible for conducting surveys at headquarters locations, i.e. Geneva, Madrid, Montreal, London, New York, Paris, Rome and Vienna, neither the Commission nor its secretariat are actively involved in any operational aspects of non-headquarters surveys, the overall responsibility for which is assigned to the organizations. The United Nations conducts the overwhelming majority of non-headquarters salary surveys and is also responsible for the promulgation of all local salary scales.