On this page, we're detailing why we have the compensation framework we have now.
We want our compensation to be at a level where we can recruit and retain people who meet our requirements. Our requirements for most of our job-families are at or above the average in the market. Therefore, we can expect to be at or above the 50th percentile of the survey data gathered from providers like Comptryx and Radford. Please do not use the term market rate since this can mean either competitive rate or survey data. Also see our SF benchmark.
When discussing a competitive rate for a single person at GitLab, please refer to this as their lottery factor. For example, if this person won the lottery and left the company what impact would that have. Other common industry terms are walk away factor or bus factor, but those both hold a negative connotation.
Competitive rates for roles vary depending on regions and countries. We pay a competitive rate instead of paying the same wage for the same role in different regions. Paying the same wage in different regions would lead to:
For more context please also see our blog post about paying local rates.
Please see a Twitter thread from compensation expert Heather Doshay where she discusses paying local rates and how that impacts both companies and team members.
We hire the best candidate for each role regardless of location, cost, or other factors. During the sourcing we do optimize what potential candidates we approach in order to bring more diversity (both geographically and people from underrepresented backgrounds) to our team.
Different than business travel, vacation, or visiting a relative for a few weeks, a relocation means that you will establish yourself in a new location outside of your current metro area. If you are ending your current residential living arrangement, spending more than six months in one location as part of an extensive period of travel and/or will have your mail delivered to an address in a different city, please follow the steps below.
Please note, it is the company's discretion to offer you a contract in your new location. At the time of the location update, we will take into consideration your new metro region when making a salary offer for continued employment.
At the onset, this practice sounds harsh when moving to a lower paid region. One might argue that it seems unfair for the organization to pay someone less for the same work in the same role, regardless of where they go. However, if you look at it from another angle for a minute and compare this practice to what most companies do, it should make more sense. For example, say you work for a company with physical locations and say they haven't accepted that remote work is as productive as coming into the office yet. If you wanted to pack up and move to a location where they did not have a physical site, you would have no alternative but to resign and seek new employment in your new location. You would find quickly that companies in the area pay at a locally competitive rate.
Now, let's say the company did have a site in your new location and they offered the flexibility to transfer. If they did not have a similar position open, you would have to either apply for a different open position in the same company or resign and apply externally (back to the realization that other companies will pay at local competitive rate). If you were lucky enough that they did have a similar role in the new location, a transfer would come with a pay rate based on the local market to ensure equity across all incumbents (people in the job) by location.
Adjusting pay according to the local market in all cases is fair to everyone. We can't remain consistent if we make exceptions to the policy and allow someone to make greater than local competitive rate for the same work others in that region are doing (or will be hired to do). We realize we might lose a few good people over this pay policy, but being fair to all team members is not negotiable. It is a value we stand behind and take very seriously.
How to apply for a relocation
If you are going to spend six months or more in one location this will be considered as a relocation and your compensation will be evaluated based on the new geo area.
If you are not changing your permanent location (where you pay taxes and maintain residency), but instead are traveling to different locations over a period of time, you are responsible for maintaining your health insurance, visas, and any other item directly relating to your travel. Since GitLab does not require you to travel to these locations as part of your position, you will not be eligible to utilize the Business Accident Travel Policy or expense any items related to your travel. If you are hired in a role requiring a timezone alignment, you must still be able to fulfill that requirement.
For Total Rewards: Processing Information Update Requests:
We also wrote a blog post about paying local rates.
We have a market-based approach to compensation because:
Effective Q2 of FY 2021, we have established a one time bonus payment process for team members that are asked to step into an interim management role. Team Members acting in an interim management role should review the expectations of an individual in the management group.
The formula for the bonus recognizes the length of time that the team member is playing the interim role. Payment of the one time bonus would occur at the completion of the interim role. The bonus would be calculated using the following formula:
The greater value of the standard discretionary bonus amount ($1,000 at the current exchange rate) OR the following calculation:
For team members on a base salary compensation plan, your bonus will be an additional 10% of your salary for the duration of the interim role period. The calculation is as follows:
(Annual Base Salary in Local Currency/365) x .10 (10%) x # of Calendar Days in the Interim Role
For team members on an OTE (On Target Earnings) compensation plan, if you assume the quota of the role that you are covering for, you will be paid 10% of your OTE for the interim role period. The calculation is as follows:
(Annual On Target Earnings in Local Currency/365) x .10 (10%) x # of Calendar Days in the Interim Role
The process for submitting an interim bonus is as follows:
The team member must be an active team member of GitLab at the end of the interim role period to be eligible to recive a bonus payment. If a team member leaves GitLab during the interim role period, they will not be eligible for a prorated payment.
($125,000/365) x .10 x 90 = $3,082.19
($100,000/365) x .10 x 31 = $849.32so we would round up for this bonus and process as a discretionary award.
2020-01-01 Oanda Rates
|Currency||Rate from USD||Rate to USD|
The compensation calculator is updated in January and July with the proper exchange rate, keeping compensation levels in line with local purchasing power.
There are a number of reasons why team members may not be paid in local currency. For example, GitLab's bank might not support the currency or there may be a strong economic reason for the team member to choose a different currency. The currencies that GitLab can pay in are published on the contracts page.
(New Rate - Previous Rate)/Previous Rate.
Example: A team member's local currency is the Russian Ruble (RUB) and they are paid in US Dollars (USD). They have not previously opted out and have been employed for greater than 6 months. The exchange rate effective 2020-01-01 is 0.016. If for 2020-07-01 the exchange rate increases to 0.017, then this would result in a percent increase of 6.25%. The team member would have the option to either accept this increase to their salary or opt out.
In addition to base compensation, Directors who are not already enrolled in the Sales Compensation Plan or other performance incentive plan are eligible for a 15% bonus of current base salary (increased from 10% beginning in FY 2021). Director Compensation is determined as part of the GitLab Compensation Calculator.
Executive Compensation (VP and above) is derived outside of the GitLab Compensation Calculator using the following process:
For FY22, GitLab will review how we can incorporate performance into the Executive Compensation increase process.
As each Executive has an individual market assessment upon hire, we expect compensation to be aligned to market at each compensation review. If there are large changes in the market for a specific role, those will be addressed.
All targets are based on Company performance against Plan targets as approved by the Board of Directors.
Proration and Eligibility:
Bonus examples can be found in the following google doc.
GitLab reserves the right to change or discontinue the bonus program at any time. All bonus payouts are discretionary and require the achieving of specific company results that will be communicated each year.
The Compensation Committee approves all bonus payouts for direct reports to the CEO at the end of each Fiscal Year. The Compensation Group internally at GitLab approves all other bonus payouts.
As part of our Q1 OKR, we will be working on ensuring there are materials for a compensation certification. The following are the initial questions to generate the certification.
You can test your knowledge on our compensation by taking the GitLab Compensation Knowledge Assessment quiz.
If you have qustions about compensation or the content in the Knowledge Assessment, please reach out to the Total Rewards team. If the quiz is not working or you have not recieved your certificate after passing the Knowledge Assessment, please reach out to the Learning & Development team.