Compensation Manager Salary

Compensation Managers in the United States with more than 10 years of experience in their profession represent nearly three in five of Compensation Managers. Salaries average out to around $94K per year and spread from $61K to $136K per year. Cash earnings for Compensation Managers — including $21K in bonuses and $8K in profit sharing proceeds near the top of the pay scale — generally stretch from $61K to $136K depending on individual performance. Experience level and the particular city each impact pay for this group, with the former having the largest influence. Almost all enjoy medical and dental coverage in this occupation, and a fair number get vision benefits. Compensation Managers survey participants are largely women, dominating at 63 percent. The majority of Compensation Managers claim high levels of job satisfaction. Respondents to the PayScale salary survey provided the data for this report.

$60,810 - $123,793
MEDIAN: $94,455

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
$60,810 - $123,793  
$2,250 - $20,632  
Profit Sharing
$0.00 - $8,140  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
$61,123 - $135,519  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 12 Jan 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 322
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Job Description for Compensation Manager

Compensation managers are responsible for ensuring the efficiency and quality of a company's payroll and employee-compensation programs. They work with all types of organizations, from corporations to small businesses, by developing and managing compensation and benefit programs for employees.


Compensation Manager Tasks

  • Manage the day to day operations of the compensation department’s programs; job evaluation, performance appraisal, salary administration and incentive programs.
  • Plan all compensation programs, procedures and practices to ensure consistency with organization's overall objectives and are in compliance with professional standards, state and federal regulatory requirements and laws.
  • Manage the selection, training and development of staff.

Common Career Paths for Compensation Manager

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For Compensation Managers, career advancements do not tend to correlate with a rise in salary. On average, lower-level Compensation Managers earn similar salaries to those in higher-end positions like Compensation Manager.

Compensation Manager Job Listings

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Popular Skills for Compensation Manager

Professional skills reported by Compensation Managers are few in number. Most notably, skills in Microsoft Excel, Benefits & Compensation, Human Resources Information System, and compensation are correlated to pay that is above average. Skills that seem to negatively impact pay include Data Analysis. Most people who know Benefits & Compensation also know Human Resources Information System (HRIS).

Pay by Experience Level for Compensation Manager

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.

Respondents with less than five years' experience take home $74K on average. In contrast, those who have been around for five to 10 years earn a noticeably higher average of $99K. Experienced professionals — those with 10 to 20 years in the field — see salaries in the six-figure territory, securing around $108K on average. Survey participants with more than two decades under their belts actually report earning less than people with less experience; the former take home only $102K on average.

Related Job Salaries

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Experience Affects Compensation Manager Salaries

up arrow 3%

National Average

up arrow 26%

Skills That Affect Compensation Manager Salaries

Microsoft Excel
up arrow 3%

Benefits & Compensation
up arrow 3%

Human Resources Information System (HRIS)

National Average

up arrow 1%

Data Analysis
up arrow 9%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 54 votes.


63 %
37 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
1-4 years
5-9 years
10-19 years
20 years or more

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 93%
dental benefits
Dental: 89%
medical benefits
Vision: 77%
dental benefits
None: 5%