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  • Setting Merit Budgets This Year

    Is Three Percent the Right Merit Budget for Your Organization?

    By Stacey Carroll, PayScale.com

    I get the phone call a lot. It goes something like this, “Stacey, my CFO wants to know what the average increase other companies are giving this year so we can determine our merit budget. Can you tell me?”. I can. The short answer is from everything I’ve seen and read recently, most organizations are planning on giving anywhere between a two to three and a half percent increase in 2012. But, the better way to answer the question is: “Why is ‘what everyone else is doing’ our approach to compensation”? In reality, what your organization should pay as a merit increase for 2012 is going to depend on many factors – but here are just three.

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  • California Laws on Compensation

    Compensation Issues in California

    By Beverly N. Dance, MBA, SPHR-CA, CCP, CEBS, dance@mba.berkeley.edu

    I love my home state of California, but when it comes to pay and human resources issues, there is a reason California is the one and only of the 50 states that has its own separate certification exam above and beyond the national Professional Human Resources, PHR and Senior Professional Human Resources, SPHR. If you have employees in California or are considering bringing jobs to this state (PLEASE DO) here are a few new details you should know due to AB 469. (No need to mention to your employees that the legislation is called the Wage Theft Prevention Act of 2011.)

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  • Bigger and Better Raises in 2012

    2012 Trends in Compensation and the PayScale Compensation Best Practices Report

    By Tim Low, PayScale.com

    Today we released the PayScale 2012 Compensation Best Practices Report. The report is a result of our end of year study on the compensation practices of small, medium and large companies. We also asked some questions about the changing world of work, the use of social media at work and for work, as well as some additional questions on technology use in HR.

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  • Do Not Talk Pay with Your Competitors

    Why It’s Dangerous to Pay Like “The Guy Across Town”

    By Melissa Quade, CCP, PayScale.com

    I hear this from my clients all the time:

    “I just want to know what MY COMPETITOR 1 and MY COMPETITOR 2 are paying, so I can pay 5% higher.”

    “Can you make sure that I only get data from ALL OF MY COMPETITORS in this report?”

    “Why can’t I see which companies pay what in this report?”

    The short answer is: collusion. It’s a big no-no.

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  • The Pros and Cons of "Ownership Thinking"

    Ownership Thinking: Can It Help Your Business?

    There’s been some buzz in business circles about Brad Hams’ Ownership Thinking: How to End Entitlement and Create a Culture of Accountability, Purpose, and Profit. This weekend I sat down to see what the fuss was about, and found some interesting and some not so interesting points in his work.

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  • HR Funnies: Compensation Consultant Shares Insights

    Need a Laugh? Check Out Our Comp Consultant's Job Review

    By Bridget Quigg, PayScale.com

    What is it really like to work in compensation consulting? Our very own PayScale compensation consultant, Melissa Quade, decided to share her thoughts about her job through photos.

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  • NYC Salaries at Fashion Week

    Gisele Tops Earnings at Fashion Week NYC

    By Bridget Quigg, PayScale.com

    As if Gisele's recent comments on the New England Patriot's football skills didn't draw her enough media attention, now one of the biggest weeks in her industry has arrived, Fashion Week New York. We may soon enjoy more of her colorful comments and glossy photos in the news when this glitzy gathering begins tomorrow. PayScale decided to look beyond the glamour with our worker-centric infographic, "Salaries on the Scene at Fashion Week."

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  • Be Careful with Unpaid Summer Interns

    FLSA Series Part 4: Interns or Apprenticeships

    This is the fourth of a series of articles explaining the complicated Fair Labor Standards Act, FLSA, or the Wage and Hour Law. January and February are often when organizations are deciding if they can bring on summer interns. Many organizations would like to do this, but not all can afford to create opportunities for work of limited duration. What may motivate you to develop an intern program is that you may be able to pay your intern less than minimum wage under certain circumstances.

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  • Career Showdown: New York Fans vs. New England Fans

    Career Advantage: New York Battles New England

    By Bridget Quigg, PayScale.com

    How about an Human Resources showdown on Feb. 5, instead of the gridiron battle? What would happen if you pitted New York versus New England based upon career-enhancing factors like shorter commute time, higher pay and lower work stress? You'd get PayScale's "Fan Face-Off XLVI: Which Team's Fans Have the Career Advantage?"

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  • Canadian Cities Battle for Winning Wages

    From Vancouver to Montreal: PayScale Covers Canadian Cities’ Wage Trends

    By Bridget Quigg, PayScale.com

    The next time a Vancouver Canuck fan jabs a Montreal Hab supporter, the Hab can come back with, “Well, our pay is growing faster than yours!” Is it? Yes, according to PayScale.com. The PayScale Index now includes trends for six Canadian metros and if you look at the ranking, Montreal is ahead of Vancouver by 0.4 percent in the last 12 months. Can you guess which town is number one?

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  • Salaried Employees Work Hours: Laws from FLSA

    Exempt Employees and Rules Requiring Specified Hours

    You probably are aware that exempt employees generally should be paid the same salary regardless of the number of hours they work or the quantity of work they produce. But, can you require them to work a certain schedule and track their hours?

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  • Simplified Compensation Software - PayScale’s 2012 Winter Release

    Your Life Is Now Officially Easier

    The product team here at PayScale just released its latest version of our compensation planning software, PayScale Insight. We want you to know about the improvements we've made because they were inspired by people like you, the hard working HR professionals and business owners out there who face the task of determining base salaries, raises, bonuses and countless other major compensation-related decisions every day.We hope you'll find that the newest Insight features make sense to you and provide the elusive "helping hand" you've been waiting for.

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  • How to Determine New Employees' Annual Bonuses

    When to Give an Annual Bonus to a New Employee

    Chances are, you have recently been tasked with the job of determining (or at least helping to determine) what your employees’ end-of-year bonuses should be. With your long-term employees, you've have had some historical practices, as well as a, hopefully, comprehensive performance review to rely on to help you. But what do you do with employees who haven’t been with the company for a full year, including those who may have joined very recently? While there are no hard and fast rules, here are some approaches for you to ponder.

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  • Salary Negotiation Tips for Employers

    How to Respond to a Request for a Raise

    It’s that time of year again: the annual salary budget has been set, performance evaluations are done, and suddenly managers are hiding behind closed doors, anxiously dreading “the talk.” The annual compensation conversation doesn’t need to be a daunting, mysterious process, either for managers or the staff they supervise.

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  • Wages Trend Up to Finish 2011 Ahead

    Rising Wages Signal Shift in Q4 2011

    By Bridget Quigg, PayScale.com

    PayScale released its results for The PayScale Index for Q4 of 2011 and you may be surprised to find out where workers' wages went in 2011. They are up across the board for the first time in a long time. While certain skills sets were in higher demand and some cities stayed in a slump, in general, earnings grew somewhat for the majority of workers by year-end 2011.

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  • Best Stories of the Year

    A Look Back: Top Stories of 2011

    By Bridget Quigg, PayScale.com

    As we head into 2012, HR leaders and business owners can take heart in the more positive unemployment news and the (spoiler alert) optimistic, soon-to-be-released Q4 2011 results for The PayScale Index. The economy made forward progress in 2011. What was on our readers' minds and what were the favorite stories and topics here on Compensation Today? The following list highlights the hottest, not-to-be-missed posts of 2011.

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  • FLSA Child Labor Laws

    FLSA Series Part 3: Child Labor Laws

    This is the third of a series of articles explaining the Fair Labor Standards Act, FLSA, or the Wage and Hour Law. This article will discuss the child labor laws under the FLSA. Be aware that to be in full compliance, you should also check to see if your state has additional regulations. I know my state of California does.

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  • Rules on Pay After a Resignation

    Do Voluntary Resignations Require Advance Notice?

    When you’re watching your labor costs, it is important to know how to handle an employee resignation, compensation-wise. If you require employees to provide two weeks’ notice of their resignation, you may have to pay them for that full period even if you release them earlier. But, even if you only request the advance notice, it still may be better employee relations to pay for that full two-week period.

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  • Listen Up, Mr. Scrooge! PayScale Compensation Plan Advice

    What We Would Teach Ebeneezer Scrooge About Compensation

    Image001“Bah, humbug! Why should I pay my people another dime?”

    Beware, Managers, don't follow Scrooge’s miserly ways when it comes to compensation. As the classic tale goes, through various ghostly visits, our friend Mr. Scrooge learns to get into the holiday spirit and finally rewards his hardworking employee, Bob Cratchit, with a raise and a "discussion of his affairs." How would PayScale advise Scrooge to adjust his compensation philosophy for long-term success?

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  • What Small Companies Really Need from HR

    Large and In Charge: The Strategic Role of HR at Small Companies and Non-Profits

    4320245924_b8f945a7f8_bWith the buzz around talent management, organizational development, and management circles, the role of HR is becoming more sophisticated in larger organizations . But, in smaller companies and non-profits, HR professionals often still fill more traditional roles in areas like recruitment, benefits, payroll, and evaluation processes – not to mention being the on-staff therapist. It’s time for small organization HR professionals to dig out from under the heavy lifting and get into more strategic positions in the company. The company needs them to do so, and here is why.

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