Benchmarking Board Compensation

Jul 23, 2023

Understanding Board Compensation

Board compensation is a critical aspect in the governance of any corporation. It involves the remuneration that board members receive for their services. This compensation often includes a mix of cash, equity, and other benefits. The amount and structure of board compensation can significantly influence the behavior and decisions of board members. Hence, it is crucial for companies to benchmark their board compensation.

The Importance of Benchmarking Board Compensation

Benchmarking board compensation is an essential process that helps companies to maintain competitiveness and ensure fairness in board remuneration. It involves comparing a company's board compensation with that of similar companies in the industry. This comparison provides valuable insights that can guide the company in setting its board compensation.


By benchmarking board compensation, companies can ensure that they offer competitive compensation packages to attract and retain competent board members. A compensation package that is significantly lower than the industry average may discourage competent individuals from joining or staying on the board.

board meeting


On the other hand, a compensation package that is excessively higher than the industry average may raise eyebrows among shareholders and other stakeholders. Benchmarking helps to ensure that board compensation is fair and justifiable. It prevents companies from overpaying or underpaying their board members.

How to Benchmark Board Compensation

Benchmarking board compensation involves several steps. Here is a general guide on how to go about it:

  1. Identify Comparable Companies: The first step in benchmarking board compensation is to identify companies that are similar in size, industry, and complexity. These companies should form the basis for comparison.
  2. Collect Compensation Data: The next step is to collect data on the board compensation of the comparable companies. This data can be obtained from public filings, surveys, and other sources.
  3. Analyze the Data: Once the data is collected, it should be analyzed to identify trends, averages, and other relevant information. This analysis will provide insights into the prevailing compensation practices in the industry.
  4. Set Compensation: Based on the insights from the analysis, the company can set its board compensation. The compensation should be competitive and fair, reflecting the responsibilities and risks associated with being a board member.
compensation analysis


In conclusion, benchmarking board compensation is a crucial process that helps companies to maintain competitiveness and ensure fairness in board remuneration. It requires careful selection of comparable companies, diligent data collection, thorough analysis, and thoughtful setting of compensation. By following these steps, companies can ensure that their board compensation is competitive, fair, and aligned with the interests of shareholders and other stakeholders.