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Attract Top Talent with the Right Cannabis Job Compensation & Benefits

HR staff looking at cannabis compensation paperwork

Attracting and keeping talented cannabis employees that fit your company culture is top priority for all human resources departments in the industry. The legal cannabis industry has over 420,000 full-time employees. However, the revolving door of the space is an issue every cannabis business must deal with, like any other industry. Although work-life balance and company culture are usually the top reasons employees accept or stay at cannabis jobs, pay and perks are right alongside them. One report by Reflektive concluded that 58% of employees consider salary as the main factor in choosing work, followed by benefits and vacation packages. To attract top cannabis talent, your business needs to provide attractive compensation, and benefits.   

Cannabis job salary, compensation, and benefits are pivotal in maintaining an employee’s workplace satisfaction. After all, those components affect their motivation to work, as well as their performance. The right pay and perks for cannabis jobs are effective ways a company can show they value and acknowledge the hard work employees put in.   

owner calculating compensation budget for cannabis industry staff

The Importance of Compensation and Benefits  

People strive to put themselves in the best possible position financially, as they know their value and will seek cannabis jobs that pay accordingly. Benefits are also essential, as they provide people with a boost in quality of life. Both compensation and benefits allow a person to live at a certain comfort level, so they can enjoy their hobbies and passions. As a cannabis business, offering attractive compensation and benefits will increase your chances of hiring the best talent. It will also improve employee motivation and even boost their loyalty.  

When people feel valued, they are more motivated to come to work and do a good job rather than coast through the day. Assembling the best team for your cannabis business is the most important part of running a company striving to achieve sustainable success. Before diving further, it is helpful to define the two terms for clarity:  

Compensation is a reward paid to an employee for the work they perform. Most people know that compensation means money; however, it also includes unlimited paid time off, healthcare, bonuses, and more. Compensation includes your salary but also includes non-monetary payments.  

Benefits are always non-monetary and are given as a display of appreciation. Flexible work schedules, the possibility of working remotely, catered meals, and gym memberships are some of them that fall under the benefits category.   

cannabis HR employee taking salary notes

Key Factors of Compensation and Benefits in Cannabis 

There are various aspects to compensation and benefits for cannabis industry jobs. Overall, there are four types of compensation: salary, hourly wages, commission, and bonuses. Together, compensation and benefits have four parts. 

Fixed pay is the minimum payment from an employer to a cannabis employee. This includes bonuses and overtime. Cannabis employers set the amount based on several factors, including minimum wage in the state, the importance of the cannabis job, and cost of living. 

Variable pay is the pay from an employer based on the employee’s performance and the overall achievements of the marijuana company. It is also called performance-linked pay. When an employee achieves their goals, variable pay serves as a bonus or commission.   

Equity pay are non-cash payments that represent a partial ownership of the company. Stocks and options are the common types of equity pay. Equity pay allows cannabis employees to get a share of the total company profits. Typically, the stocks vest after an employee has worked at the company for a set amount of time.   

Health benefits are payments received via health insurance. By offering healthcare plans to cannabis employees, you are establishing your cannabis business as a people-first organization.   

diverse hands on a table

Ensuring Fair and Equal Compensation 

A recent salary analysis found that in 2021, women made around 80 cents for every dollar a man made. Like all other industries the cannabis space falls short when it comes to fair and equal compensation for all. Being transparent about salaries and putting females and minorities at the decision-making table are ways that can help remedy this issue. In the cannabis job hiring process, compensation should be discussed. Labeling compensation discussion as taboo comes from an antiquated mindset.  

Fair pay means that the compensation matches the difficulty and amount of job duties and responsibilities of an employee. For example, one manager who handles supervising 20 employees and has specialized knowledge that contributes greatly to the company’s goals should be paid more than a manager who does not have a unique skillset and oversees five people. 

Equal pay is when two employees with the same knowledge, responsibilities, and skillset have the same compensation. With all the cannabis industry jobs available, ensuring fair and equal compensation takes effort. 

Cannabis Salary Guide 

Using a cannabis salary guide is one way that you can strive for fair and equal pay. Most cannabis industry salary guides are free to download, so both parties can know the average salary for each cannabis job. Post a salary range on your cannabis job description and mention it during the interview process.  

Compensation and Salary Reviews 

Create a compensation review cycle for your cannabis business. Meet regularly with your HR and finance teams to discuss budget and salaries and have separate meetings with your employees. In the HR meetings, you can analyze changes in cost of living and competitive salary ranges.  

Communicating clearly about compensation plays a substantial factor in retaining employees. Based on a study by Payscale, employees are more engaged with their tasks if they know they’re receiving fair pay. Higher pay is undoubtedly a significant aspect in increasing motivation among employees. However, when employees know where their compensation stands compared to the industry standard, they have an easier time engaging with their work. Out of the employees who receive salaries at the market standard, 64% believe they are being paid below average. Therefore, payment awareness is crucial.   

group on a hike during sunset

The Right Compensation and Benefits Help the Success of a Cannabis Business 

The employees at a cannabis business play a huge factor in the level of success the company reaches and maintains. By far, human resources are the most significant part of any cannabis business. Therefore, supplying suitable compensation and benefits gives your company two incredible advantages for success:   

Attract the best cannabis talent 

Hardworking, talented employees know their value, leading them to look for the best compensation and benefits in the cannabis industry. If one part is lacking, they are more likely to pass up on your business’s cannabis job opportunity. HR managers should keep up with what competitors are offering so they can meet or exceed it. With so many cannabis industry jobs available, attracting the best talent for your company can be challenging without the right compensation and benefits.  

Retain talented cannabis employees 

With a competitive compensation and benefits package, cannabis employees will feel more motivated. Additionally, their morale will remain high, allowing them to perform well more consistently. When an employee is motivated, they are less likely to entertain other cannabis job opportunities and will devote more of their efforts to achieving the company’s goals.  

To calculate compensation and benefits for cannabis jobs, you should stick to the industry-wide standard. As a start, the latest cannabis salary guide can help you determine averages. You can also look to a compensation expert to conduct cannabis salary surveys so you can determine a standard pay for the positions on your team and roles you are hiring for. You can also have your HR professional look at different variables, including job performance ratings, educational qualifications, and past successes, to suggest fair compensation.  

More Cannabis Industry Insight

2022 Tri-State Cannabis Salary Guide

Salary guide download for the Tri-State cannabis market

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2024 Cannabis Industry Salary Guide

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