General FAQs

ERI's SalaryExpert is an employee-provided data driven survey where pay information is contributed to ERI's Global Salary Calculator (GSC) SalariesReview job family database, a "job family" construct rather than the "job specific" data as found in ERI's Salary Surveys and Assessor Series. GSC's 20 C3 job families serve as the foundation for all estimations shown. Both the free and customized reports, as well as the installed-software products utilize this data, all designed to address the answer to this question, "What does a(n) xxxxxxxx job earn in xcity, xstate, xcountry?"
    The following FAQs are divided into two sections for 1) individual employees and for 2) employers.

SalaryExpert FAQs for Individuals:

What type of salary information does SalaryExpert provide?
SalaryExpert reports provide mean (average) annual base salary levels for each position. These base salary cash compensation levels exclude bonuses, variable pay, allowances, and benefits (including social charges such as Unemployment Insurance and Social Security payments).

What is the difference between a Basic Free Report and Premium Salary Report?
The Premium Salary Report gives consensus results from employee-provided input. The SalaryExpert® Premium Salary Reports also adjust for experience, education, industry, and other variables specified by your answers to our online questionnaire (as compared to millions of other individuals' inputs).

How current is the data?
Unlike traditional salary surveys, data is updated daily, to the minute. (ERI holds the patent for the constant refreshing of data and values: Patent Nos. 6,862,596 and 7,647,322, "System and method for retrieving and displaying data, such as economic data relating to salaries, cost of living and employee benefits.")

How is my personal information used?
Inputted data is contributed to the ERI SalariesReview and eDOT Skills databases anonymously; your name is not included.

Which products are for employers? Which are for employees?
Consultants, HR departments, and employers seeking commercial quality, cross-referenced, and verified competitive market data by location and industry normally subscribe to the authoritative and long-proven ERI Economic Research Institute Assessor Series and Salary Survey databases, both of which contain employer-provided data.

Employers who wish to supplement their ERI subscriptions with employee-provided data subscribe to the SalaryExpert® Global Salary Calculator, a downloaded application that quickly accesses over 100,000 job titles for 69 countries.

Individuals who want more detailed analyses may purchase the SalaryExpert® Premium Salary Report. Those who wish to review board or management pay may purchase a Nonprofit Executive and/or For-Profit Executive Report.

SalaryExpert FAQs for Employers:

Who is SalaryExpert?
SalaryExpert is a division of ERI Economic Research Institute that specializes in employee-provided data. Unlike employers' salary surveys, data are updated daily (no three-month waiting period required). Data is collected via ERI's patented online survey processes. Compared to ERI's Assessor Series employer-provided data, SalaryExpert convenience sampling creates competitive values with larger statistical errors and less precise job matching. However, the sampling extends to geographic areas and niche industries not typically surveyed by employers and collects data elements related to job content (selected characteristics of occupations), skills, and credentials required that are no longer collected by other firms (or governments). These real time, pay and cost-of-living data points match and vary by organization, position, industry, area, and unique employee profiles.

What are the SalaryExpert® sources?
SalaryExpert results are derived 100% from employee-provided data. Work measures are stored in PAQ's Skills database (PAQ is another ERI division), while remuneration data are stored in ERI's SalariesReview databases (separate from both ERI's Salary Surveys and Assessor Series databases). Input from individuals is collected anonymously and, although many may be bothered by the high rate of error (minimized by a large sample size), certain work measures such as mental, cognitive demands have been found by researchers to be actually more precise than measures collected by third-party job analysts.

How are SalaryExpert data stored and results derived?
Data is parsed into the SalaryExpert® C3 Job Family Matrix in which an area and/or industry's data are described within the 20 job families found universally throughout the world. Data entered by web visitors has been collected, analyzed, and stored in this manner since 2000, with input assigned first to broad management, professional, paraprofessional, tradecraft/labor, or sales occupational groupings and then into more refined job families based on skills and experience (level and size for management jobs). Specific jobs within each job family sub-grouping are ranked according to the pay relationships provided by ERI from research of specific job rankings within a job family.

How may these results be verified?
Data reported by national government sources (i.e., DOL Occupational Employment Statistics for the US, National Statistics Office for the UK, Statistic Canada, etc.) are often illustrated for comparison purposes. Government data are provided under licenses maintained by ERI Economic Research Institute (public domain data available only in the US).

Why is government salary data considered to be conservative?
US government salary data from the Occupational Employment Statistics survey is considered to be low (conservative) for the following reasons.

Wage ceiling: The United States Bureau of Labor Statistics OES dataset collects wage data in bands, but the top category is open-ended, defined as “$80 per hour and above” or $166,400 per year. Therefore, high-end outliers do not exist in the federal database despite their occurrence in the real world. This brings average/means down, since the highest salary rate is recorded as $80 per hour. Yet in actuality, many US employees receive $100, $200, $300 and up per hour.

Time frame: In addition, this survey captures data on one-third of US organizations each year. (In total it covers 1.2 million establishments listed in State Unemployment Insurance (UI) files.) Updating 400,000 entries once every 3 years means that upsurges in competitive rates are missed. This makes the OES survey considerably out of date compared to almost any private survey.

Organizations surveyed: Limiting employers to UI listings eliminates new high-risk start-ups that offer premium pay. Instead the survey relies on more established firms that tend to pay more modest guaranteed base pay in light of the total compensation value of their benefits, perks, stability of employment, and career progression options.

Industry data: This survey is conducted to collect and provide evidence to support Federal General Schedule pay increases. It disregards employer size and (in most cases) industry, both of which are significant factors that cause variances in pay. The OES survey does not differentiate between for-profit and nonprofit organizations (which tend to pay lower salaries). In addition, it excludes certain industries and occupations (agriculture, fishing, forestry, household workers) and includes government workers (except security forces).

It is a well-known fact that government pay is low. Those who leave public employment generally do so to receive private-sector pay that can be orders of magnitude greater than their public paychecks. Government service almost always involves a cash sacrifice in terms of current earnings. For more information, see the article: “Public Sector Pay and Performance.”

What products does SalaryExpert offer?
Individuals who input basic information receive a free report, oftentimes accompanied by an overtime eligibility test (in the US). This latter result occurs with additional inputs that are used in PAQ's eDOT Skills Project (99 questions that rotate 3 x 33 visitors) to enhance a database intended to assist those with disabilities (by matching their lessened capabilities to available jobs' demands).

Three Premium Reports allow individuals to more fully assess their job's competitive value, specifically scoping their position for industry and task skills and experience required.

The SalaryExpert® Global Salary Calculator is a download application that quickly accesses rates of pay for over 100,000 job titles in 69 countries.

For more precise and data rich analyses, employers rely on ERI's Salary Surveys and Assessor Series products, including the Salary Assessor (industry salary survey), Geographic Assessor (geographic differentials), Occupational Assessor (FLSA), and Relocation Assessor (cost-of-living), along with both an Executive Compensation Assessor (for-profit executive pay) and Nonprofit Comparables Assessor (nonprofit executive pay).

Unlike other vendors who don't publish their prices (making online purchases a telephone negotiation), Salary Expert prices range between $29 and $889, ERI Salary Surveys from $225 to $669, and Assessor Series from $889 to $2,389.