Compensation and Benefits#

Compensation philosophy#

See also

We are working on an update of our compensation policy. See that document for ideas that are more specific / structured than this page.


We are a young organization, and this page describes the salary policy that we aim to enact in the coming years. It may not accurately reflect our current practices, but we share it for transparency and to provide a goal for our team to shoot for.

Our salary policy should ensure that our team feels financially supported and respected in their roles, and should be aligned with our values and mission as a non-profit organization. Team members should feel that 2i2c is a competitive workplace from a salary perspective, while recognizing that we do not have the financial resources of most tech companies. Below are a few guiding principles of our salary policy:

  • Benchmarked to non-profit tech. We should benchmark our salaries based on similar roles in our sector (non-profits that do technical or research work, depending on the role). See Salary band process with GuideStar for the current process we follow.

    • If we determine that a sector is systemically under-paying a given role in a way that makes us uncompetitive, then we may increase the salary band for the role to be more aligned with the private sector.

  • Explicit rationale. All of our salaries must be tied to explicit roles, with consistent and transparent responsibilities and expectations for entering and advancing a role.

  • Transparent compensation by role. Our salaries, benefits, and the roles that they are attached to should be available to all.

  • Fixed salaries for a role. We do not negotiate salaries within a given role. Salaries are fixed for a given role and tenure1.

  • Equal pay for equal work. We practice equal pay for equal work across our team. Salaries do not distinguish between geographic location or cost of living and are benchmarked against North American salaries in the non-profit tech sector.

Salary band process with GuideStar#

We define our salary levels relative to non-profit organizations with a similar size and scope as 2i2c. In order to have a more objective definition of competitive salaries, we use the GuideStar compensation report to compare common numbers across non-profits. This is provided by CS&S, and we have a PDF in our drive here:

Use the following criteria when defining the salary for a given position / level with the GuideStar report:

  • Use the Science and Technology Research Institutes, Services category

  • Use the $1m-$5m budget category

  • Choose an appropriate job category that most closely matches this position.

  • Define “compensation” as base salary + 25% benefits.

  • Use the median compensation in a category as a starting salary.

  • If this is for an earlier job in a given series, adjust the total compensation down accordingly (see below for a guideline).

Understanding the GuideStar reports#

Here are a few tips to understand the GuideStar reports:

  • The numbers there are for the top-paid position in each category. This means that for earlier levels in a job category, we need to reduce the total compensation accordingly.

    • Rule of thumb: Expect a 10% salary bump between job levels, and a 2% salary bump for steps within a level.

  • This is total compensation, not salary. GuideStar reports a combination of salary and benefits, keep this in mind when defining our salary bands.

  • Do not share the GuideStar report externally. It is a service paid-for by CS&S and should not be shared out of the CS&S organization. The links above should only be available to those with a email address.

List of salary bands#

To be updated

We are working on updating our salary bands across 2i2c, see this issue for details.

We have internal salary documents for the specific positions and levels.


Benefits are offered by Code for Science and Society. They are offered via TriNet as described in the CS&S employee handbook.


This is because we believe that allowing negotiation introduces bias that benefits individuals who are more confident, aggressive, or experienced. This also correlates heavily with demographics and personal qualities that are not tied to the ability to do the job well. Instead we try to be as transparent as possible for the rationales at a given level. See the Tidelift blog post on their no-negotiation policy for salaries for one rationale for this practice, and this blog post for an argument against negotiation bans.