In November 2019, GEiHP attempted an experiment in collaborative transparency by inaugurating an open salary sharing spreadsheet for Jewish communal professionals. In less than 6 weeks, over 700 individuals contributed their data, approximately 1% of the entire field of Jewish professionals in the United States. Our hope was to analyze and share this data so that individual members of the Jewish community would have a resource for benchmarking salaries and engaging in market research, in our communal reach toward pay equity--and for those organizations striving to create compensation philosophies as well. Since 2019, so much about our Jewish communal ecosystem has changed, but salaries have not yet changed substantially. But salary transparency norms–and laws–are rapidly changing, and our belief in transparency is firm. We know that sharing this data has a profound attempt on the capacity of individuals to collect useful information about salary and benefits, and enables them to benchmark data to understand where their salary fits into the larger ecosystem.
In 2019, you shared your data with us enthusiastically. At the same time, you shared your concerns about format, transparency, and personal and organizational readiness. Now we’re ready to experiment with you again. We invite you to learn more, and contribute as we build this experiment’s next iteration. Transparency is at the heart of what we all seek--and striving for transparency in our organizational processes and in our conversations with one another is at the foundation of this work.
Today, the Open Salary Spreadsheet invites data shared by full-time employees in the Jewish community who live in the United States, Canada, and Mexico. In limiting our scope of work, we are creating a bounded network (one with clear boundaries). We are choosing at this time to include only these categories, which means that we leave out our colleagues who work part time, or those who live in Israel or in other countries, in part because of the different measures for understanding their contributions. We hope at some point in the future to modify this tool to include a broader representation of the Jewish communal workforce.
I'd like to contribute my data. How do I get started?
Thank you! You make it possible for this resource to exist. Contribute your data by completing this survey here, or by clicking here to get started. We depend on your sharing to make this tool available. Thank you for generously contributing. With your participation, you build our community, both our community of professionals and our Jewish communal ecosystem as a whole.
By giving without expectation of reward, you are fully embracing our core value of equity הגינות hegyonut. We believe in treating people fairly. Today, you may not be in need of this data, but you may in the future. Today, you give so that others in need may receive. Today, you give so that you can receive, and others may support you. Approaching each person based on their unique, individual need, so that they can be successful, is rooted in that belief in fairness. We distinguish this from equality, treating each person the same regardless of need. While equality may be our ultimate goal, it is equity that will get us there. We pursue equity so that each has the opportunity to succeed. Your contribution enables us to elevate our core value of transparency שקיפות. We embrace openness and honesty. Trust is cultivated and built by sharing information, knowledge, and challenges, both internally and externally, and we know that this transparency enables us to take risks and grow together. This Open Source Spreadsheet enables us to demonstrate, through action, that we believe transparency is fundamental to our pursuit of equity.
How do I access the Open Salary Spreadsheet and view its contents?
You can find it HERE.
Why do we invite you to share your data?
Sharing our salary and benefits data lifts up the power of transparency and builds a culture of trust and participatory community. In doing this work, we hand the tools of transparency to Jewish communal professionals and invite you to contribute to building a culture of transparency by sharing your data.
What do we do with our data? What is the purpose of this research?
We are not surveying for others, but for ourselves, for the 75,000 Jewish communal professionals who make up our field. According to Leading Edge’s Employee Experience Survey (2022), 61% of employees in the Jewish community report that their organization does not understand how salaries and raises are determined by their organization. 58% of employees in the Jewish community report that they do not believe their salary is fair relative to similar roles at their organization. This is one small step toward empowering these individuals to advocate for transparency and accountability inside their organizations, and to gather the data they need to negotiate for more. We believe that this data belongs to those who generously share it. We do not consider it ours, but the Gender Equity in Hiring Project considers itself the stewards of this data and commits to protecting it in order to make it available for communal use.
What questions are included in the Open Salary Spreadsheet?
We are gathering data about salary and benefits in your organization and across the field in general. Included are core questions about raw salary and compensation; title and job level, location; benefits; certifications, degrees and honors; gender, race and ethnic identities; and organizational budget and staff size, among others. Note that this is not a catch-all data collection, and we are focusing on a specific set of questions. As a result, a question you’re hoping to answer may not be found here.
How might I use the data?
Consider two vantage points when using this data. First, it is self-reported. This acknowledges that data is contributed by individuals whose contributions are changed by their personal biases, feelings, and beliefs. Self-reporting does change and challenge the validity of any given data set, as participants may exaggerate or underreport, or be mistaken or misremember. Participants may do this because they do not recall or because they want to make their situation seem better or worse or minimize or maximize their challenges. While we recognize that self-reporting has its own challenges, we trust our users to report true and honest information. Second, this is employee-contributed and centered data. This means that it is crowdsourced by and for employees, not aggregated by employers, so it represents the biases, needs, and concerns of employees. Nor does it describe any organizational compensation philosophies, approaches to salary banding, or organizational policies. This approach to transparency is through the lens of the employee first.
Is the Open Salary Spreadsheet anonymous? Why?
Yes. We do not collect any identifying information, other than the data you share, which is completely anonymized. You choose what to share, based on a variety of identifying criteria, and what suits you best as you describe your role. Additionally, we do not collect any personal information like name, IP address, or email address in the process of collecting this data. We do collect one element of personal information that we keep private, in order to help sort and locate our users for our own purposes. We do collect zip codes in order to help sort and locate our users so that we can determine who is using our resource and how we can best reach folks in parts of the country (and the world) who might not otherwise know about this work.
We believe that there is great value in anonymity in this experiment. This is part of our core belief in transparency, recalling that we can understand transparency along a spectrum ranging from full transparency (all information about everyone visible all the time) to no transparency at all, which we know is where many organizations begin. Anonymity for those contributing their data is one point along this spectrum of transparency, where we share data, but the individual identities of our contributors are anonymous, and we aggregate data by various criteria, in order to better understand the field.
How do you protect my anonymity?
The back-end data for this project is owned by the Gender Equity in Hiring Project and its employees, and no one else has access to that data. Once a contributor shares their data, it is protected by Airtable: transmission of information between your computer or device and Airtable’s servers is protected using 256-bit TLS encryption. Airtable takes its privacy obligations — and the protection of your information — seriously, and complies with all applicable privacy laws and regulations. Our survey data is anonymized so that when content is entered, it can immediately update. All additional data entered in the “prefer to describe” categories (which may be unique, and thus constitutes private information) is not visible to our users. This content is for our research only and will remain private.
As an employee, how might I understand this data?
Consider two vantage points when using this data. First, it is self-reported. This acknowledges that data is contributed by individuals whose contributions are changed by their personal biases, feelings, and beliefs. Self-reporting does change and challenge the validity of any given data set, as participants may exaggerate or underreport, or be mistaken or misremember. Participants may do this because they do not recall or because they want to make their situation seem better or worse, or minimize or maximize their challenges. While we recognize that self-reporting has its own challenges, we trust our users to report true and honest information. Second, this is employee-contributed and centered data. This means that it is crowdsourced by and for employees, not aggregated by employers, so it represents the biases, needs, and concerns of employees. Nor does it describe any organizational compensation philosophies, approaches to salary banding, or organizational policies. This approach to transparency is through the lens of the employee first.
As an employee, how might I use this data?
Employees in Jewish organizations at all tiers and levels of employment can use this to do this work of benchmarking and analyzing salary and benefit information: this is primarily for them. The data found here is shared by those who contribute their information, and who come to this space to learn about how their salary and benefits compare to others. This is one tool for employees to benchmark their own salary and benefits, and analyze the market, in niche positions or broadly across the field. If you benefit from using this information, please consider making a donation to support our work, so that it will continue to be updated and available for your use.
I’ve contributed my data, and I’ve used the spreadsheet as a resource to benchmark and analyze my salary. What else can GEiHP do for me?
The Gender Equity in Hiring Project offers a suite of support and resources to help you navigate your next steps. Please let us know how we can be most helpful. Please read on to find out how we support our community as we strive together toward equitable salaries for all. We are able to provide a variety of wrap-around resources as you navigate your next steps.
Peer Benchmarking: I’d like to speak with a peer (or multiple peers) to benchmark my salary.
Coaching: I’d like to participate in group negotiation coaching (GEiHP’s Ask For It Negotiation Coaching) or GEiHP’s individual, one on one negotiation coaching
Resume & Cover Letter Review: I’m working on my resume and/or cover letter. I’d like some help revising and polishing them and tailoring them to the jobs I want.
Mock Interviews: I’ll need to be prepared to have conversations about salary as a part of my interview.
Strategy: I’d like to design a strategy for my negotiation, even though I’ve done this before, and have a sense of how it’s done.
Let us know how we can help. Be in touch with us here.
What can this data do for employers?
Employers may use this data in the aggregate, looking at broad trends, and not necessarily view it for specific data points. At the same time, they may be aware that their employees may be participating as contributors. We invite employers to both acknowledge employees’ participation and the ways in which that may shift their relationship with their employers and supervisors.
We invite you to join us as we continue this experiment in creating a culture of trust and transparency across the Jewish professional world. Employers, please consider making a contribution to support our work. If your organization wants to truly practice equity, beginning with equitable compensation and believes that we need to put our values of equity and justice into practice through our compensation – in other words, to put their money where their values are–we invite you to back up those values with a financial commitment. Please learn more about our commitment to equitable compensation here.
How might employers use this data?
Employers, consider two vantage points when using this data. Note that this is self-reported data shared by individual employees whose contributions are changed by their personal biases, feelings and beliefs. For this reason, we encourage employers to view this data in the aggregate, looking at broad trends, and not solely as individual data points. While we recognize that self-reporting has its own challenges, we trust our users to report true and honest information. Recalling that this is employee-contributed and centered data reminds us that this. represents the biases, needs and concerns of employees. As a result, it does not describe any organizational compensation philosophies, approaches to salary banding, or organizational policies, nor is it a stand-in for those. This approach to transparency is through the lens of the employee first.
Who uses this data? Who is it for?
While we know that many employees are using this data, we also know that employers find this data useful as well. We also recognize that there are individuals who will use this data whose role here is blurred and who serve in multiple capacities.
Employers, please consider making a contribution to support our work, based on the resources that your organization brings to bear on our ecosystem. If your organization wants to truly practice equity where it matters, beginning with equitable compensation, and believes that we need to put our values of equity and justice into practice through our compensation – in other words, to put their money where their values are–we invite you to back up those values with a financial commitment. Please click here to make a contribution.
What information do I need to have or know to participate?
In order to participate, you need only to know specific data about your own position and have access to some basic information about your employer. Other information both personal and organizational are also preferred, in order to build your data set. You may need to gather some of this as you go, but most information you will likely have at the ready.
I have questions about the Spreadsheet, or I’d like some help using it. How can I get support?
We’re happy to help. We have a number of folks who form our team of advisors, researchers and data analysts, and we look forward to providing you with the information you need. Reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will get back to you as quickly as we are able.
Read More About Our Open Spreadsheet Experiment
An Invitation To Transparency: Reflections on an Open Salary Spreadsheet (January 5, 2021), Sara Shapiro-Plevan and Rabbi Rebecca Sirbu
The Truth No One Wants to Hear (December 18, 2019) Anonymous
Jewish Nonprofit Employees Are Sharing How Much They Make in A Google Spreadsheet (November 20, 2019) Molly Boigon https://forward.com/news/breaking-news/435115/google-spreadsheet-jewish-nonprofit-gender-pay-gap-salary-negotiation/
Anonymous Spreadsheet Shines Light On Jewish Professionals’ Salaries (November 19, 2019) Shira Hanau