Is Transparent Pay Good for you?

Would it be alright if everyone knew the amount that you are earning? Not just your boss, or your partner, or just close friends, everyone, including friends of friends and people that you don’t even know. Well, that is the case for employees of a startup – Buffer, the company who has adopted the transparent pay as a part of their workplace.

Buffer’s policy to “default to transparency” is a way of working, which the company considers will become the new normal and not an exception. There are several other companies that think that radical transparency is the future of the workplace. Some of the companies are:

  • SumAll – a startup that shares employee salaries within the company
  • Whole Foods – the company which allows any employee to take an appointment to have a look at company’s wage disclosure report
  • Employees choose their own salaries and are open about it with everyone at Ricardo Semler’s Semco Partners

Even if we consider all the companies, there are only handful companies that implement transparent pay at the workplace.

salary pay performance

It is obvious that there are goods and bads of implementing transparency in pay in any company, let’s have a closer look at it:


  • A survey shows that every two out of three employees are not satisfied with their pay and think that they are underpaid even when they are paid according to market rates. It also states that employees who are not paid much but are explained by their employer about the reason why they are earning less are much more satisfied with their job and are willing to stick to it. Thus, transparency improves job satisfaction among employees.
  • If the organization lacks transparency in pay then employees often tend to think that information is withheld because the employers do not want to reveal biases done on the basis of salary. Being transparent about salary will only make the things clear between employees and the management.
  • Transparency can create happier and more productive workers.
  • Such moves can keep people from quitting their jobs.
  • Highly improves organizational culture and establishes better relation among peers.


  • It creates many adverse effects if it does not go with your company culture.
  • Jealousy among peers can lead to flooded mails and complaints for management.
  • There is no going back once the transparency is implemented.
  • Employers are put in a bad spot, as they have to explain every employee about why they are paid what they are paid.

You should consider all the pros and cons and how your company operates before implementing transparent pay at your workplace.

Anna Verasai
Anna Versai is a Team Writer at The HR Digest; she covers topics related to Recruitment, Workplace Culture, Interview Tips, Employee Benefits, HR News and HR Leadership. She also writes for Technowize, providing her views on the Upcoming Technology, Product Reviews, and the latest apps and softwares.

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