Online compensation a click away (Web sight)

Rating the effectiveness of online compensation tools

The Internet is an easy and effective way to gain access to a wide variety of compensation information. Human resource professionals, recruiters and employees have all found online compensation tools useful when negotiating salary increases or determining salary ranges. There are several tools available, but just how effective are they?

Employees use salary tools too

According to the article “Responding to online data” on the site, at least one in 10 employees has looked at compensation information online, since “salary sites have become a routine component of both the job search and the career management process.” The article adds that it should be assumed that employees will show their employers a salary report that details what the market is paying for their jobs. “When it inevitably happens, the employer can be prepared and avoid seeming defensive. The best response is to show openness toward the employee’s research. The company should use the opportunity to open a dialogue about the organization’s pay philosophy, how pay is determined, how pay and performance are related and how employees are matched to benchmark jobs.”

Online data should be verified

“How HR pros can use online compensation data” on takes a look at the benefits of using online compensation information, including easier access to data and its interactive capabilities. The article cautions HR professionals to validate the accuracy of online data and review the methodology to make sure it follows professional standards and principles. “Be sure the data is relevant to the jobs being researched. Assess the ‘comp’-etence of the publisher to publish statistical results. Validate the data against known values, such as surveys typically used to benchmark the same jobs. And consider the agenda of the data provider.” The article also examines where online data compensation comes from: “Be wary of organizations that use self-reported data, which may be instantly reportable, but has no method of validation and benefits to the user if inflated values are reported.”

Online comp links HR, business strategies

“Moving beyond spreadsheets: Controlling costs and improving productivity with e-compensation” takes an in-depth look at how web-based compensation management can help “organizations empower managers, control spending, cut processing time and improve productivity.” Using technology, an online compensation strategy helps “optimize the analysis and administration of compensation plans. But e-compensation is much more than just technology. It focuses on linking automation to HR and business strategies.” The article goes on to say that several stakeholders are served when an e-compensation plan is introduced, including executives looking to measure compensation strategies against business objectives; compensation professionals wanting tools for planning and analysis; employees keen to know their total wealth; and managers seeking self-service tools.

Lessons from CIBC

This Finance Tech article “Human resources outsourcing is alive and well at CIBC” outlines how EDS helped the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce create an employee portal called MyHR@CIBC, an e-compensation and e-HR system. EDS provides the bank’s global employees and retirees with “24/7 HR business process services including benefits, payroll, workforce administration and compensation management.” CIBC now has a more standardized and integrated system. Employees can sign up for benefit programs and change their beneficiaries, as well as update benefits selections. “At the crux of it all is HR Direct Access, a portal for all of the HR applications and tools, including job posting, recruitment, benefits administration and payroll.”

Salary, benefits survey information

“Resources at your fingertips for HR professionals” offers a variety of useful human resources information, including books and websites about technology, strategy, marketing and education. Scroll down to “Compensation & Benefits Online Resources” for links to salary and benefits survey report information, as well as compensation information sites such as, WorldatWork and Abbott, Langer Association Surveys.

Ann Macaulay is a Toronto-based freelance editor and regular contributor to Canadian HR Reporter. Her Web Sight column appears regularly in the CloseUp section.

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