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Be a Compensation Paleontologist

Compensation Cafe

Is your compensation structure a Payalotasaur? No matter your approach to pay, you are probably acting as a Compensation Paleontologist to get things done. The best compensation pros do much the same thing. Only compensation professionals can prevent this.

4 Ways CEOs Mess Up Pay Programs

Compensation Cafe

If your CEO doesn’t understand and support the way you pay people, you will probably fail as an HR or Compensation leader. When evaluating the cause of compensation problems, it’s a good idea to start with the five items below. Maybe they don’t buy-in to the compensation philosophy.

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All Decisions Are B.A.D. Decisions

Compensation Cafe

Even compensation experts, supposedly the most analytical of HR types, have difficulties with data. Even in the numbers-oriented world of compensation management, Scientific Wild-Ass Guesses (SWAGs) still are required sometimes. All decisions are B.A.D.

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

Compensation Cafe

We make hundreds of small decisions like this every time we benchmark compensation, determine incentive pay levels, set goals, and decide on merit increase minutiae. Dan has written several industry resources including a recent Performance-Based Equity Compensation issue brief.

It's Cheaper to Pay Them than Lose Them

Compensation Cafe

We were discussing the cost of long-term incentives as related to their compensation philosophy of paying between the 50 th and 75 th percentile. In the end, it is the job of the compensation department to ensure the company can operate and perform at its peak.

Price is Only an Issue in the Absence of Value

Compensation Cafe

As compensation professionals, we worry an awful lot about prices. Value is something we often put on a back burner while trying to build a better benchmark. Dan has written several industry resources including a recent Performance-Based Equity Compensation issue brief.

Performance Management 2.0: Improving Your Employee Motivation Strategy


I joined 15Five’s Director of People Science, Courtney Bigony and Chief Culture Officer, Shane Metcalf, in a recent webinar where we addressed ratings and compensation as they relate to performance reviews. Focus more on base pay and less on bonuses.

A Quick-Start Guide to Creating a Salary Structure for Your Company


The surveys cover “benchmark jobs”. Once you have identified the benchmark jobs that “match” (i.e., median) across the benchmark jobs. Define compensable leverage for your company. Compensable leverage refers to how much more or less salary rate increases in your company, overall, compared to the market rate increase for higher-paid positions in the organizational hierarchy. It’s important to determine the desired compensable leverage for your company.

Part I - Malaise in the Employee Rewards: What’s Going On?

Compensation Cafe

Sales compensation has always been a different beast: it has different buyers and economic cycles than employee rewards, and sales incentives constantly evolve to meet new business needs. Benchmarking is the antimatter of strategic thinking.

The recruitment process: 10 things you need to master to succeed


While it’s important to outline the duties of the position and the compensation for performing those duties, including only those details will come off as merely transactional. In this case, a referral bonus could work as an incentive.