Employee Benefits News: Learnings on changing company compensation

We’ve all heard that it’s more important than ever for employees to feel that they have that family balance. Time away from the office, flexible working and a good package are all coming in as key for this generation of workers, and with unemployment rates at record lows, the competition for talent has never been tougher to attract people to the business.

If you want to make a full work – life integration and a complete employee benefits overhaul, you may find this study interesting.


New Orleans based Search Influence, a digitally focused marketing company based in New Orleans, Search Influence specializes in optimizing potential. Search Influence focuses on clients’ return on investment as a full-service, digitally focused marketing firm offering a range of services that support the customer journey from brand awareness to delight, including search engine optimization, paid digital advertising, social media management, and advanced analytics and tracking.

The plan:

To take ‘aggressive steps’ to attract and retain the best team members to serve its growing client base.

The reasoning:

In an increasingly digital and accessible world companies are finding they must support employees with more than just a paycheck. Beyond fair pay, today’s workforce expects flexibility, collaboration, and personal and professional growth opportunities.

The method: 

1. Analysis of pay and perks can come from across the board

Knowing customer success is intimately intertwined with employee satisfaction, the leadership team of New Orleans marketing firm Search Influence underwent a rigorous analysis of pay and perks in July 2017.  In addition to interviews with local and national peers, the Search Influence team looked at national data aggregators PayScale.com and Salary.com.

Speaking on the company blog, they added that resources came far and wide.

“The analysis also included a survey by a third-party HR consultant, reaching out to our talent competitors throughout New Orleans, including tech companies, marketing companies, a bunch of different industries around New Orleans, and we got aggregated information from these big websites. And in the process, some of our team reached out to friends and family who were in markets that might be more advanced in the employment market, including New York and some on the West Coast, to see what some of perks they have access to involved”

2. You can move quickly if you know the startegy is right

The business surprised employees by making immediate changes and debuting a new company compensation philosophy.

With a desire to be both locally competitive and to adopt progressive practices from around the country, Search Influence overhauled its pay, perks, work structure, work schedule and paid time off – providing one of the most competitive packages available in the Southeast United States very quickly.

“We did a pay analysis a couple of years ago and there was another done prior to that. So the team who’s been with us throughout all of those has seen this happen before. As the New Orleans tech community grows, we have to be agile in our approach to comp. This time, though, we wanted to be more transparent with the team on the process and decisions that were made.”

3. Look beyond salary and think of people as individuals

Angie Scott, COO and Co-Founder of Search Influence says

“It was clear to us that comp is not just about salary. Compensation can and should be a total package including base pay, monetary benefits like 401k and health insurance, as well as perks and flexibility.”

Flexibility and supporting work-life integration was key in the analysis and implementation of Search Influence’s new pay and perks package. The Search Influence leadership team also added additional PTO days, another paid holiday annually, a structured remote-work program, a transportation stipend, and flexible hours.

“The most important thing is that as long as you’re getting your work done, you can do it on your time. Through the inclusion of flexible hours, and the remote work benefit, we are going to start living that belief. We want our team to work hard, do great work and also have a life and take advantage of all the great things New Orleans has to offer,” says CEO and Co-Founder, Will Scott. “It’s our belief that if we empower our team in this way, it will come back multiplied for our clients and their results.”

According to Angie Scott, “my favourite is the core hours. They’ll allow the whole team to have more flexibility. When I think of people who are like me, our working moms, I hope this will enable them to put in a couple of longer days, and then go pick up the kids early. I’m proud that we can offer them the opportunity to be more flexible so that they can be there for their team at work and their family at home.”

4. Add in cultural expectations at the same time

The Search Influence Compensation Strategy is designed to compete for the best talent, stating that

“Our employees are our greatest investment and we’re selective about whom we hire. We will conduct regular market analyses and make adjustments to compete for the best talent in the most relevant labour market.”

They encourage them to live core values every day and the business rewards individuals who contribute above and beyond their job descriptions, deliver excellent client results and support colleagues in their pursuit to do the same.They also say that they expect excellence.

With this ethos, alongside the wider benefit changes, Search Influence expects to foster a culture of excellence and engagement among employees, thereby improving client satisfaction and increasing the company’s rate of growth.



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