Conversations with regards to compensation are an important part of being a people manager. This page will take you through information and recommendations to effectively manage and guide these conversations. If you’re ever in doubt or have a question, don't hesitate to reach out to your aligned People Business Partner.
Please make sure to review and understand the following content with regards to Compensation at GitLab:
For FY24, Total Rewards will be providing Cash Compensation Statements outlining the compensation increase and/or promotion received during Annual Compensation Review. We recommend reviewing this letter before the conversation and use the letter as preparation to communicate exact approved figures. It is also recommended that you send the letter to the team member after your conversation with them so they can view the details.
After Equity planning has been approved, a more robust Total Compensation Statement will be released. More information on this is forthcoming.
Communicate the increase face-to-face over Zoom. As a manager, this is an opportunity for you to have a conversation with your team member about their compensation, increase and/or equity refresh grant (if applicable). Having the conversation over Zoom allows for you to have a dialogue with your team member (versus just sharing the number) and allows you to pick up other information like tone and non-verbal cues which can tell you more about how someone is feeling.
Communicate the change at the beginning of the meeting. You want to give the team member time to ask questions and discuss their compensation change. Avoid trying to rush to communicate at the end of a 1:1 meeting.
Try to clearly explain the reasoning behind the compensation change. As Compensation differentials are related to performance, the preparation done for the Talent Assessment conversation could also be useful in explaining the "why". It is also recommended to review the Annual Compensation review page for all considerations that go into compensation reviews.
Protect the confidentiality of other team members by avoiding saying things like “everyone else received less than you” or “you were the only team member to get a discretionary increase.”
Avoid blaming others (For example: “I would have given you more but management didn’t approve.”)
This section provides and overview of potential compensation conversation scenarios with recommendations on how to approach and navigate these conversations.
"I am (also) pleased to inform you that your equity refresh grant is approved at (insert USD). The following factors were considered in determining the equity refresh grant (Talent Assessment, Criticality of Role/Skills, Tenure, Unvested equity holdings). This means your total unvested equity is $XX based on the share price of $X (as listed on the Total Compensation Statement)".
"Thank you for your hard work and I look forward to continuing to work with you! Do you have any questions?"
Recommended: If identified as Key Talent: "Based on the impact you have on the business/ARR/Product/essential processes and your performance within that responsibility, I (or Senior Leadership) have identified you as Key Talent. This means we feel you fulfill a key role within GitLab and we value your skills and what you deliver to the company."
Role or skill based decision: "Participation in this program was based on performance and criticality of role/skills. Therefore, not all team members will receive a refresh grant in the annual review cycle. However this is an annual process. You will be eligible to participate in next year’s program."
Not in good standing with the company There could be factors that have contributed to the fact that currently the team member is not in good standing with the company. Examples here could be: Code of conduct violations or significant behavioral issues. As a communicating manager please discuss these with Team Member Relations and your People Business Partner.
Has been with the company for a shorter period of time: Team members with less than 6 months tenure were not eligible for a refresh based on our eligibility cut off date. However, aligned with the equity refresh program setup and market alignment, not all team members who are eligible based on start date will receive a grant. Tenure has relevance when considering overall impact of contributions so far, demonstrated performance and growth potential, and unvested equity levels. Tenure was a factor in considering grant allocations.
Team member was hired after the cut-off date: "At GitLab we review compensation (cash + equity + benefits) on a yearly basis. Due to your hire date you were not eligible to receive additional compensation at this time. You will be eligible for the next Annual Compensation Review where we will review both your cash and equity compensation."
Team member is receiving either just a compensation adjustment or just an equity grant Please refer to the guidance above to explain to a team member why they may be receiving either just a compensation adjustment or just an equity grant.
Other scenarios: If you have a scenario different from the above, and/or you need help with messaging, please work with your manager or People Business Partner.
If you need assistance after reviewing the handbook, please work directly with your manager or your People Business Partner