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Evidence points to the fact that frequent resignation of project engineers from construction companies is primarily the result of dissatisfaction with the factors that shape the salary scale. This research aims to identify the major influencing factors in merit based salary calculation systems for knowledge-oriented engineers so as to more accurately reflect their contribution to construction projects. Results from a questionnaire sent to managers, engineers and HR professionals throughout the Iranian construction industry revealed that while there was overall agreement on principles to a merit-based approach, engineers in particular identified ‘professional skills’, ‘experience’ and ‘creativity’. Management-oriented parties should take into account engineer perspectives in order to more accurately value the knowledge-oriented contribution of these workers to construction projects. This research provides a basis for understanding the key factors in the merit based salary scale formulation through the construction industry.
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