Never around the dinner table, not during the interview process and certainly not in company – so when is it okay to talk about money? In the workplace it seems as if more and more companies (58% in fact) are becoming transparent about salaries in an effort to eliminate gender and cultural bias.
Because while great strides have been made to create a more diverse and equal workplace, the fact remains that women in the US on average 16% less than men, while the difference in salary for people from black, Asian and Hispanic communities can be like this: high as 43% compared to white workers.
But let’s go back for a moment. What exactly does payment transparency mean? Essentially, it refers to a company policy where the company shares information about its pay scales and salary scales before and during the hiring process and with existing employees.
It means sharing all financial information about its employees with its employees to make sure there are no discrepancies between employees doing the same job. Sounds great right? Well, yes. When done right, pay transparency results in a more positive, collaborative and engaged workforce because there is no resentment between employees.
It also breaks cultural and gender pay gaps, opens up opportunities for previously marginalized workers, and creates a workforce based on capabilities and skills rather than genetic makeup.
So what’s the downside? Pay transparency requires more than just a town hall meeting and a pay bill being distributed, which is only now becoming apparent to businesses. It requires a little rethinking of HR practices and their relationship to salary – such as a super-clear overview of how financial reward is results-oriented, as well as a clear explanation of the steps required to reach a higher salary scale. Employees need to know what they need to achieve if they want to progress to the next salary scale.
For employees, it poses a slightly different conundrum. If you add more value to the company than a colleague with the same salary as you, how can you ensure that your compensation package is representative of your output and avoid resentment? Basically, this is about how you can make payroll transparency work for you.
By being smart, that’s how: Look beyond money and work to create a personalized, non-financial benefits package that contributes to your lifestyle.
Why do you earn extra benefits? Make sure you’ve done your homework and prepared your pitch if you’re planning a meeting to discuss this with your manager. What value have you brought to the company in the past year and what is your value? Be specific here.
Look at the team average and compare your impact. Try to avoid comparison with one colleague and instead compare your results with the team as a whole. This makes your pitch stronger and more professional. If you’ve brought in 20% more than the team average, that’s an argument for extra reward. It is more difficult to discuss data than it is about emotion.
What do you want? Is it a matched contribution of 401K, extra paid time off or flexibility within your workday to start a little later or finish a little earlier? Know exactly what rewards you want and propose them to your boss – propose them all, don’t stick with them. By bringing four to five options to your boss, you’re doing the hard work for them and eliminating the possibility of getting a benefit that has no value to you.
If you are clear in your value to the company, but your boss is unwilling or unable to offer a non-financial reward, then pay transparency isn’t working for you and you should walk away. You’ve done your homework and know what benefits you want, so you have a starting point for negotiations with a new employer. There are currently dozens of companies employed by the VentureBeat Job Board, three of which are highlighted below – all with great benefits.
CrowdStrike, a fintech company that uses cloud-native software to change our view of cybersecurity, is a former unicorn growing stronger and stronger. The company is currently seeking a number of outside roles in network engineering, security analytics and data services. For employees, CrowdStrike offers employees health insurance, retirement benefits, paid volunteer days, and stock opportunities. Discover all the possibilities at CrowdStrike.
Shopify is the ecommerce platform that makes it possible for anyone, anywhere in the world, to be a business owner and is a company that lives by the mantra “conformity kills originality”. The staff’s approach is open and collaborative, and as long as the work is done and you’re happy, you can work wherever and whenever you want.
Shopify is currently looking for a number of product engineering, human resources, and project management positions where all staff can take advantage of the generous health plan and annual charitable or healthcare benefits. Discover all vacancies at Shopify.
Duolingo is the most downloaded education app in the world and seeks people for a number of remote and hybrid functions. If you are passionate about languages, education or technology, then software engineering, business development and project management roles may be for you. DuoLingo is an established company with a startup mindset and a range of non-financial benefits for its workforce.
In addition to anticipated health care, family and parental leave, on-site chef, and annual training allowance, DuoLingo also offers employees a generous contribution of 401K (with immediate vesting), mental health support, and stock opportunities. Discover all the roles at DuoLingo. For many more job openings, explore the VentureBeat Job Board
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