Articles of Interest

Articles of Interest

We invite you to review the articles below which cover a wide range of topics related to compensation surveys in the developing world.  We periodically publish new content on our blog and via LinkedIn.  Be sure to check back often!

Rethinking Market Comparisons: A New Definition for Compa-Ratio

Employers use salary surveys to measure the market and remain competitive. But making such a comparison can be quite difficult, even misleading. Conventional wisdom tells us to compare average incumbent salary to survey data by job. This is commonly referred to as the compa-ratio.

Rethinking Survey Comparators - Your Sector Is Not An Island

One of the most important steps in deciding on a salary survey is identifying which other employers are included as participants, and their relevance for your company. Conventional wisdom would dictate that you should look primarily at other companies in your sector. In fact, many survey companies have built their businesses over the years exclusively with this approach.

Salary Survey Market Percentiles Exposed!

In the first installment of this series, we wrote about why jobs don't matter in salary surveys. We hope you've already read it, but if not, be sure to do so. This week, we will bust another myth - market percentiles. Users of salary surveys are accustomed to referring to the market data in terms of a percentile.

Do Jobs Really Matter in Salary Surveys?

Compensation professionals all use salary surveys as inputs into the management of salaries in their respective organizations. As we all know, surveys capture market data for benchmark jobs - representative positions that are commonly found across many employers - and this data is then used to inform about other (non-benchmark) roles.

Benchmarking Regional Roles: What Works?

More and more companies are consolidating operations into regional centers, using a base in one country to manage businesses in multiple markets. This makes good sense for several reasons: Efficiency - regional offices eliminate duplicate resources and allow organizations to focus on customer-facing positions in smaller markets.

In Africa, Watch Your Compensation A-B-C's

My business is focused on advising employers on how best to structure their compensation and benefits programs in developing and high-growth markets. We have a particular expertise in Africa, where our compensation and benefits surveys cover all 54 countries. Recently, I helped conduct an employer roundtable for clients in South Africa, focused on fast growing African markets.

Two Salary Surveys Are Better Than One

If you work in international HR, you know how important market data is for the management of your international operations. Finding reliable data in all of your countries is undoubtedly a challenge. Each country has different survey suppliers, different employers participating in the surveys, and variable levels of quality.

Salary Survey Insanity in Small Markets

Benchmarking compensation in smaller countries is challenging. The usual approaches often do not work well, mostly because the market is small! If the country is developing (most small ones are), then economic and social instability and immature labor market conditions contribute to the problem, too.

Why Inflation Doesn't Matter When Calculating Salary Increases

How much should we budget for next year's salary increases? What's the inflation expected to be? One of the most common questions clients ask us is how to figure out the budget for salary increases each year. Oftentimes, they rely on two sources which we at Birches Group do not consider to be very relevant - salary increase surveys and inflation.

Managing Compensation When Uncontrollable Events Occur

This article is an update of a LinkedIn post from August, 2014. The countries have changed (a bit) but the concepts are still sound.] Lately we have been receiving a lot of inquires from clients about how to best manage compensation in high-inflation countries, including Ghana, South Sudan, Zambia, Argentina, Venezuela, Kazakhstan, etc.

What’s new

Venezuela Special Measures – Survey Results

Results of the Birches Group "Survey of Special Measures in Venezuela" are now available.  Multiple annual pay increases, and...

March 15, 2017 / read

Addressing Economic Volatility in Nigeria

The Nigerian Naira dropped almost 60% in value versus the US dollar in 2016.  Should employers take special actions...

February 01, 2017 / read

Why Jobs, Not Objectives, Matter When Measuring Performance

Performance management is a mess.  Critics suggest we should just throw in the towel and cut our losses. But...

January 26, 2017 / read

Egypt Devaluation: How Should Employers Respond?

The recent devaluation of the Egyptian Pound of nearly 75% against the U.S. Dollar has employees clamoring for pay...

November 16, 2016 / read