Topic: TotalRewards Software

How To “Think Forward” About Total Compensation


As the workforce continues to evolve, it’s important to keep up with what employees value in an employer. Many organizations are re-approaching the way they present total compensation to their workforce. Unfortunately, this tactic is often utilized too late in the process to impact retention and engagement levels. On the flip side, HR teams that “think forward” and leverage total compensation as a proactive solution, and not as a point of reflection at the end of the year or quarter, gain an edge in the fight to recruit, engage and retain top talent.

Adopting a proactive approach towards total compensation will set your business ahead by instilling a culture of transparency and honest communication—key factors in retaining high-value employees and setting them up for the personal success that translates to business success.

How To “Think Forward” About Total Compensation

According to Kimmel and Associates, 91% of workers quit their job after three years. This revolving door of talent leaves companies in a tough spot to build company culture from the ground up. Opening up critical lines of communication with new recruits and top performers about their contribution to the organization and their total value as an employee can be an impactful way for HR to align core company values with their employee base – but it has to happen early in the employee life cycle.

Create a Positive Employee Outlook

Employees want to be empowered and nurtured, not micromanaged. Being proactive about total compensation helps build a company culture around development and progress. Quantitative data that illustrates what an employee is on track to achieve in the coming year can go a long way in driving a positive, healthy and productive outlook for an employee as well as prevent them from feeling like cogs in the wheel.

Prevent Miscommunication

Being upfront and proactive about total compensation also helps organizations prevent critical miscommunication between employees and managers. Total compensation discussions at the beginning of each quarter or year are great ice-breakers and can lead to frequent touch-points between management and staff. It’s important to keep employee expectations parallel to the company’s culture.

The first step in addressing retention and engagement has to be understanding employee expectations and motivators. Armed with this insight, HR teams can align total compensation programs with these values and have a better foundation for engaging employees with honest and supportive dialogue. Here’s a great article highlighting the power of employee benefits as a retention tool to help you start thinking critically about how you can innovate your company’s culture.

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.

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.