Salary Surveys

One way to find out if your salaries are competitive with other employers in your industry is to conduct a salary survey. Contact similar businesses in your area and offer to share salary information if they will reciprocate. In exchange, compile a report and distribute it to the companies that participate. The report should have a column of the positions available at the top. The left side of the report will list the participating businesses. There will be some positions that not all companies will have and some businesses may not want to reveal how much money managers make. If this happens, leave this section out on the copy of the report for nonparticipating companies.

Don't feel awkward asking other companies to participate in a salary survey. It is likely that they would also like to know if their pay is competitive in the industry. You are more likely to find businesses willing to participate than ones who turn down your request. For next year, ask another participant to prepare the report.

Another way to track salaries is to purchase a salary report. There are also some free resources that reveal salaries in your area, but you will receive the most detailed information by purchasing a report. Prices start at under $100. If you are a member of the Society for Human Resource Management, you are entitled to a directory of salary resources for your specific industry. Otherwise, you can look to these Web sites:

  • PayScale — www.payscale.com

  • CareerJournal — www.careerjournal.com

  • WageAccess — www.wageaccess.com

  • Watson Wyatt Data Services — www.wwds.com

  • SalariesReview — www.salariesreview.com

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