Posts By: Ray O’Donnell

Two-Page Total Comp Statements Lead to Record-Setting Retention Numbers for One TotalRewards Customer



Austin Materials is an asphalt supplier and paving company based out of Austin, Texas. Despite their reputation as a premier construction company in the state, Austin Materials is not immune to the industry’s high turnover rates and the challenges of managing a large, extremely diverse and often multi-national workforce. These trends make finding ways to increase employee retention and reduce turnover costs an ongoing priority for Austin’s HR team, which is why they’ve recently focused on overhauling their total compensation statements to be more compelling and easy to digest. The process of seeking out a partner and a solution to assist in a ground-up total compensation statement transformation has led Austin Materials to TotalRewards Software.


  1. Developing compelling, easy-to-consume total compensation statements tailored to a large, diverse workforce
  2. Adopting an entirely new platform and process for creating, delivering and managing total compensation statements

Large, Diverse Workforce

The first challenge in re-approaching Austin Materials’ total compensation statements is their large, multi-national workforce. According to Austin’s HR manager, Matthew Green, showing employees the full value of their total compensation has always been priority number one at the company, but Austin’s distributed workforce consisting of multi-national employees presents unique obstacles to creating effective total compensation statements on a large scale.

“We needed the ability to have everything tailor-made based on our specific needs. We are in the construction industry, so we wanted to keep our information solid, clean and easy to understand,” says Green.

Ground Zero Technology Adoption

On top of mass-producing custom, universally-consumable total comp statements, Green and his HR team has had to adopt and become proficient with an entirely new total compensation statement software quickly. Because TotalRewards Builder is the first technology of its type ever used at Austin, Green and his staff require a highly configurable, user-friendly solution. They also require the ability to learn and troubleshoot elements of the system on the fly, which makes having access to a dedicated technical support resource a must for Green.


TotalRewards Builder’s custom two-page total comp statements have greatly impacted Austin employees’ understanding and awareness of the full value of their total compensation package. The platform’s ability to easily customize statements and create visually compelling compensation graphs, including “Time Off” and “Other Cash Compensation” modules, is a major hit among the company’s diverse employee base.

After adopting the platform, Green has seen an immediate decline in voluntary terminations, and the Austin leadership team has noticed sizable savings in turnover costs. Future ROI projections for TotalRewards Builder convince Green the organization has made the right investment in total compensation software.

“The cost of the (TotalRewards Builder) program compared to even a 3% reduction in employees prevented from leaving would be a huge cost savings for us,” notes Green.

In addition to the hard savings of using TotalRewards Builder’s statements, Austin has experienced a number of soft benefits from working with the TotalRewards team. Green says having a dedicated, knowledgeable support resource has been extremely beneficial, helping his HR staff become adept at using the software and navigate initial hurdles like uploading Excel sheet data and identifying ways to best use the platform in service of Austin’s unique employees and business goals.

“They understand the software and help you really utilize every component,” Green says of the TotalRewards team.

Success at a Glance

  • On pace for 3% increase in employee retention
  • Expecting record-setting savings in turnover costs
  • Accelerated onboarding and adoption of TotalRewards Builder platform

The Austin Materials-TotalRewards Software engagement is an example of how small shifts to how companies manage and communicate total compensation can have a massive organizational impact. In the case of Austin, newfound total compensation awareness, decreased retention and higher savings came from creating simpler, more compelling and easy-to-consume total compensation statements.

Interested in creating your own custom two-page total compensation statement? Start a free trial of TotalRewards Builder today.

Could Corporate Travel Incentive Save You Money?

travel incentive

Corporate incentive travel is nothing new. Many companies leverage these vacation rewards as a popular spin on the more tangible, traditional corporate incentives like extra paid time off (PTO) or tuition reimbursement. Some 46% of U.S. businesses already include corporate incentive travel in their employee rewards programs. These organizations may be ahead of the curve. Today, corporate incentive travel is proving to be a more relevant, effective and impactful employee reward than ever. Why? Simple – because people like to travel.

Oft-mentioned Millennials are surging into the workplace, bringing with them new values and motivators – like travelling. Topdeck Travel has found that a whopping 94% of 18-to-30-year-olds travel overseas at least once a year. The travel bug isn’t just biting young up-and-comers, either. Gen-Xers and Baby Boomers both report increasing their leisure trips over the past year.

In addition to their booming travel habits, today’s workforce is approaching corporate benefit and total rewards programs with less value on monetary compensation. According to The Balance, many employees and job-seekers place more importance on elements like health and wellness, career development and, you guessed it, travel perks.

Savings from Corporate Incentive Travel

Booming travel habits and evolving workplace values illustrate how corporate travel incentives can have a positive impact across an organization, and most importantly, on its bottom line.

Here are a few ways travel incentives can deliver massive ROI for companies:

Employee Productivity & Engagement Gains

Aligning incentives with real employee motivators is what makes incentive programs most effective. And if employees want to travel, offering travel as a reward for great work is a strategic way to improve workplace productivity. In addition, the trips and retreats are a great way to foster a fun and unique corporate culture and improve employee engagement – especially for teleworkers or contractors who aren’t in the office every day.

Company Branding & Culture

Travel incentives make great marketing fodder during the talent acquisition process. Pictures from past trips and information about upcoming destinations can help paint an organization’s brand as fun, adventurous and unique. This brand impression is vital – a study from Employer Branding reports that a company’s brand is the first thing a job-seeker considers when applying for a new job.

Travel Incentives Are Scalable

Whether for a group of 100 international employees or for a single member of a team, corporate travel incentive programs are adaptable to a company. Cash-based incentives like bonuses and profit-sharing are fixed to budgets and employee numbers. A travel program can adapt to a company’s budget and workforce constraints. Instead of shelling out for a cruise to Cancun, a company could invest in a more local trip – or allow employees to choose their own.

An evolving workforce requires companies to adapt in the ways they drive employee engagement and innovate workplace culture. Corporate incentive travel may give business leaders an edge in organizational branding, culture-building and employee engagement that leads to massive gains on the bottom line.

Check out other unusual and impactful employee benefits, read our blog “15 Unusual Employee Benefits That Drive Productivity”. You can also explore a whole new way to promote your unique total compensation program by trying the online total rewards software for free today!

Three Steps to Getting Buy-In for Company Culture Programs

Company culture is a growing for priority many organizations, especially as they consider how culture affects retention and engagement. According to Deloitte, some 82% of business leaders even view company culture as a potential competitive advantage. Not bad for an organizational initiative still frequently dismissed as a “soft topic” or relegated to the idea of simply adding quirky, fun perks to the workplace.

Despite well-documented trends of companies taking steps to enhance their organizational culture, many “culture”-oriented initiatives are still getting batted down – often inside the executive suite. Whether due to a misinterpretation of what company culture actually is or a lack of understanding of the tangible benefits a positive culture can deliver, many executives are still hesitant to greenlight culture-focused HR initiatives.

Luckily, TalentCulture recently outlined a three-step process to getting buy-in for new company culture initiatives. Have a look and consider these for your organization.

Define Company Culture

Odds are most executives roll their eyes at the term “company culture”. Why? Because unless the phrase is specifically related to their company, it’s likely to come off as ambiguous and buzzwordy. It’s HR’s job to qualify company culture in terms of their company’s specific employee base as well as the employee base’s values, motivators and interests.

Understand Potential ROI

The C-Suite focuses largely on the bottom line, especially when it comes to budgeting for new, “outside-the-box” programs like company culture development strategies. HR can do their executive team a favor by connecting their company culture programs to hard savings or measurable gains in areas like employee productivity, efficiency and retention.

We recommend researching other companies that have already implemented similar culture-building tactics and using these experiences to make compelling ROI and savings projections.

Build a Case

With their company culture defined, industry research done and ROI projections made, HR needs to make their pitch to execs. And it helps if the HR leader isn’t doing on his own. Leverage the insights of employees through polls and surveys. This hard data will showcase why a culture initiative is necessary and how it could be successful.

Learn more about this three-step buy-in process by reading TalentCulture’s full article.

If building or refreshing company culture through a total rewards program is on your HR plan for next quarter and you’re ready to make your case to the leadership team, download our executive presentation template to get started.