We talked to several founders & HR folks. They all say the same thing:
The one sizes fits all compensation framework is a myth. The framework that fits your startup depends on your stage.
Early-stage comp packages are going to be equity-heavy. You can’t compete on cash compensation at this stage.
Settle on a framework that fits your cash availability and equity goals. You can comp within the 50th percentile for salary and the 90th percentile for equity. Or give greater cash comp in exchange for equity.
What matters is the same framework across roles to stay consistent (variance by country is common).
When creating a comp system, keep these three guidelines in mind:
Create a system that revisits compensation only 1-2x a year