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How to Dive In – Compensation Benchmarking

By Mary Barefoot,


Thank you for taking part in the 2019 Compensation Benchmark Review,’s agribusiness salary survey. Your efforts in supplying compensation data ensures this rare resource continues to expand and be made available to the industry we all support. We know firsthand developing and maintaining an effective compensation structure is one of the most challenging aspects for companies to both manage and get right. Your proactiveness in meeting compensation management head on, makes all the difference in the game of retention and attraction.

As you begin the real work of applying market data insight within your organization this fall, we wanted to supply you with our best tips for how to start the process. Regardless if this is a routine process or if your boss instructed you to dive in and figure it out, these basics are a good place to start.


  1. Evaluate First
    The adage “You can't know where you're going until you know where you've been” has application in the world of compensation. A good first step is to take time to assess where your business is at in real-time, both from an internal and external perspective. For example, a few questions to consider are:
  • Where does the business stand today in the marketplace?
  • Who do you compete against?
  • What does the workforce look like?
  • What is the turnover rate?
  • Does the company have core values?


  1. Strategize Second
    Once you access the current business environment, challenge yourself to answer the question of what you are looking to achieve, what is the biggest problem to resolve, and what is the desired outcome. This will also cause you to prioritize your overall strategy and create clarity to your method. You want to align the areas of focus with those that best position your employees and thereby the business, this is where you will find success in the work at hand.


  1. Support
    Once you have your strategy, identify how you will achieve the results. This is where the details of your approach are nailed down. Which resources and tools and needed? Which measurements/parameters will you use? How often will you capture information? You may have already answered these questions and be ready to get started.


  1. Ask for help!
    Not finding what you need? Confused about a report? Please reach out to our team for support, we are here to help you make the most of your subscription. is constantly improving our services to better serve our client’s needs. If you have questions regarding the salary survey or need to update account information, request a lost username or password, please email us at or call 800.929.8975 and we would be more than happy to assist you.