The General Manager Compensation Database is a tool created by Carolee Colter and Mark Goehring to assist managers with comparison data regarding their salaries, bonuses and benefits at food co-ops. Since food co-op retail general managers have unique responsibilities, the typical salary for a retail manager from conventional sources may not be fair or accurate for the job. The GM Compensation Database developed by CDS CC provides information about the median, average, and range of compensation currently being paid for similarly sized food co-ops.
General Managers access the database via their CoopMetrics accounts, input their salary data and then are able to generate reports that are extremely useful in compensation proposals for their boards. Access instructions are available here. GMs providing compensation proposals in response to board-created RFPs is consistent with the recommended process as outlined in the workshop and companion Co-op Grocer article, Setting a Process for GM Compensation.
“It’s an amazing tool,” said Jacqueline Hannah, general manager at Common Ground Food Co-op in Urbana, Ill. She recently used the database to develop a proposal for her compensation for the co-op’s board. “Outside of this database it’s hard to get reasonable information that takes into consideration the breadth of the general manager’s job responsibilities,” she said. Hannah also mentioned that being fairly compensated is critical for keeping good talent in the sector. “It gives me perspective to feel fairly compensated,” she said. “Using the GM Compensation Database is a best practice amongst my peers.”