appeals process – Engineering Growth Framework – Medium

In rolling out our growth rubric, we’re starting a more formal conversation about growth at Medium. This gives engineers the opportunity to understand the progress they’ve made, how they can progress in the future, and how that translates to their overall level. This is the beginning of our efforts to have more ongoing and intentional conversations with engineers about their growth.

Using the growth rubric, a review panel determines the current progress measurements for each engineer. This group will formally assess milestone progress every 6 months. The panel is designed to ensure that progress isn’t determined by a single individual — instead, a group of people holistically review an individual’s progress, and determine what milestone they have achieved in each of the 16 tracks.

We recognize that while the review panel will consider many different inputs and behaviors, its assessment may still sometimes be inaccurate— whether due to a misunderstanding of a project’s complexity, or differing interpretations of a milestone’s requirements. We understand that the framework isn’t perfect, and we will continue to iterate on it over time. With this in mind, it’s important that we provide space for engineers to ask questions, get more context, and request a second consideration of progress and level.

To support this, we’ve created an appeals process. We think it’s important to have this in place from day one of the new framework, to ensure we start off in the right place, and so that engineers feel empowered to advocate for themselves if their perception differs from that of their initial assessment. In the future, growth will be an ongoing conversation engineers have with their group lead, which we hope will make appeals less necessary. The aim is to have a transparent process where engineers are engaged and involved every step of the way.

Appeals Panel

Appeals will be reviewed by an appeals panel, some of whom may be on the review panel, but some of whom will not. The appeals panel will have at least one contracted external industry expert to provide a measure of disinterested impartiality.

Material Change

The appeals panel will only review cases where a change in milestones would lead to an overall level change. This is to avoid overburdening the appeals panel with minor changes that will not have a material impact on level or salary. Depending on the volume of appeals, we may review this rule in the future.

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