There's a method to our market leadership

Optimised for quality and scale, our proven methodology helps make Payscale the trusted leader in international compensation data.

methodologies for

Payscale’s approach to Employee Reported data, HR Compensation data and survey data ensures a precise view of salaries and skills premiums. As an example, our four-step methodology ensures accuracy and transparency from the collection and validation of data to the delivery of insights.

Payscale datasets

The methodology behind our Employee Reported data


Data collection

Upon completing Payscale’s salary survey, individuals receive a series of reports that show how their salary compares to other people with similar education, skills and work experience. Individuals can also explore how changes such as moving to a different city, getting a promotion or new qualifications can affect their future earning potential.


Data standardisation

Payscale leverages proprietary internal taxonomies as well as proprietary mappings to third-party data sources to assure accurate mapping. The breadth and depth of the data assets used to standardise and match data is unparalleled in the industry.


MarketMatch process

The MarketMatch algorithm involves a two-step process for producing compensation data in a Payscale report. The first step is to define a pay distribution for the job by determining which of our 250+ compensable factors align when it comes to pricing a job—and how those factors affect the job’s pay. The compensable factors and their effects are highly dependent upon the job. For example, coding languages are critical compensable factors for software developers, whereas annual sales figures are vital for account executives. The second step is to find the recent profiles that best match the position in order to tighten the overall distribution of the position described in the Payscale report.


Data analysis

Businesses using Payscale’s subscription software have access to extensive analytics about their workforce. They can see exactly how workforce salaries match to market pay ranges, adjust salaries of overpaid or underpaid employees, identify flight risks, determine raises and prepare both employee total compensation statements and executive reports.

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Methodology matters, but it has to be real. Watch our demo to learn how Payscale helps reinvent compensation practices for companies of all kinds. Complete the form to schedule your demo.