Hiring a Compensation Consultant? Here’s What to Ask First

Hiring a Compensation Consultant? Here’s What to Ask First

When it comes to attracting, rewarding and retaining high performers, organizations can’t afford to take a cookie-cutter approach to developing compensation plans. The same goes for choosing the right consultant to help you optimize your compensation programs to compete in the war for top talent.

Managing the challenges of an aggressive labor market, record breaking resignation numbers and a hybrid or remote workforce can feel overwhelming – that's why bringing in an expert to ensure your organization is staying on top of your pay strategy and offering fair and equitable compensation to your employees has its advantages. Before you enlist the help of a compensation professional, it’s critical to ensure they are a good fit for your organization and have the qualifications to match.

To help you make the right decision, here are some of the important questions that can be asked and addressed when evaluating a consulting relationship for the first time or looking to change consultants:

1. "How much specific experience do you have working in our industry?”

Relevant experience is a critical factor when bringing on a compensation consultant. Their references should include organizations of a similar size and industry. This is especially important for organizations requiring specialized advice, such as non-profit operations, that are subject to a unique set of pressures that lead to complex compensation circumstances uncommon in for-profit environments.

2. "What deliverables do you provide to make the data easy to implement within our organization?”

Does the consultant provide you with the resources you need to fully implement and execute the new compensation strategy or program in the future? Will you receive concepts or completed materials, documentations, etc.? There’s nothing worse than having the tangible assets you need to succeed, but no blueprint for implementation within your organization. It’s essential that the deliverables you receive are everything you expect, so that you have all the tools and materials you need going forward.

3. “What is your benchmarking methodology?”

Compensation benchmarking, also known as salary benchmarking, is the process of matching internal job descriptions with market pay data or a salary survey to determine the market rate for each position. This practice is used to ensure that you’re not underpaying your employees and offering attractive compensation packages to compete in today’s tight labor market.

Having access to this data is critical to your organization’s ability to recruit and preserve your top talent, so it’s vital that you understand a consultant’s approach to benchmarking and analysis before bringing them on. Do they build detailed pay analysis studies specific to your industry, geography, and company size? Will they create and implement pay grades and structures based on benchmarking data?

4. "What resources do you provide after project completion?”

Will a consultant be available to assist you in the future, as needed or on an ongoing basis? While it’s true that a compensation consultant’s role is to arm clients with the information and recommendations necessary to make informed decisions on their own, they should also be committed to the objectives they promised to help achieve, which sometimes requires additional support past project completion.

As the talent market evolves and salary expectations continue to grow, it’s best to develop an ongoing working relationship with your compensation consultant to leverage their knowledge of your organization for future needs and ensure you’re always offering competitive compensation and benefits packages.

Be Thorough When Bringing on a Compensation Consultant

Whether you're considering hiring a compensation consultant or just wanting to learn more about what they can do for your organization, we're happy to help. Download our Buyer’s Guide to Compensation Consulting or request a consultation to learn more about our custom and data-driven solutions.

Hiring a Compensation Consultant? Here’s What to Ask First https://www.cbiz.com/Portals/0/Images/GettyImages-1356386941.jpg?ver=ntzGC63yEIjd6YacsL9f3A%3d%3dWhen it comes to attracting, rewarding and retaining high performers, organizations can’t afford to take a cookie-cutter approach to developing compensation plans. The same goes for choosing the right consultant to help you optimize your compensation programs to compete in the war for top talent. Here's what to ask to ensure they're the right fit!2022-09-19T17:00:00-05:00

When it comes to attracting, rewarding and retaining high performers, organizations can’t afford to take a cookie-cutter approach to developing compensation plans. The same goes for choosing the right consultant to help you optimize your compensation programs to compete in the war for top talent. Here's what to ask during the evaluation process to ensure they're the right fit!

Employee ManagementBusiness & Management ConsultingCompensation ConsultingTalent Acquisition/RecruitmentYes