In a broadband pay structure, the numbers of salary grades are consolidated into fewer, but broader, pay ranges. In broadbanding, the spread of the pay ranges is wider and there is less overlap with other pay ranges.
Broadbanding evolved because organizations want to flatten their hierarchies and move decision-making closer to the point where necessity and knowledge exist in organizations. In flattened organizations, fewer promotional opportunities exist so the broadbanding structure allows more latitude for pay increases and career growth without promotion.
Broadband pay structures encourage the development of broad employee skills, because non-managerial jobs are appropriately valued and skill development is rewarded. Additionally, a broadband pay structure is not as sensitive to changing market pricing conditions, so they cost less to administer and manage over time. They also provide serious non-promotional income opportunities for employees.