Coinbase is to embark on a new HR strategy by increasing compensation targets, removing pay package negotiations for its new hires, and launching a new program of annual equity grants.
The US-headquartered crypto exchange giant appears to have thrown out its more traditional approach to making new hires and managing its staff, and in a blog post, its human resources chief, Chief People Officer L.J. Brock outlined the new strategy, explaining that the firm is now “revisiting” its “compensation practices.”
The move, Brock wrote, is designed to ensure “we’re competitive in the marketplace, an attractive employer for candidates and that our compensation practices reinforce the culture we want to build.”
The company currently employs almost 1,300 people, and in a filing to the financial regulatory Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) from earlier this year, wrote: “We expect such growth to continue for the foreseeable future. We expect to meaningfully increase headcount to drive and support our anticipated growth.”
And the firm appears to be ratcheting up its performance-based incentives program, announcing that it would be “further increasing our cash and equity compensation” from “the 50th percentile amongst our peers to the 75th,” a measure it said would become effective “across the entire company.”
Furthermore, compensation negotiations for new recruits will become a thing of the past, “because our standard offers are world-class.” Brock wrote that salary negotiations tend to reward people with better negotiation skills, while “those that don’t” have such abilities often “lose out.”
He added that “these negotiations can disproportionately leave women and underrepresented minorities behind, and a disparity created early in someone’s career can follow them for decades.”
Instead, Brock wrote, “all employees in the same position, in the same location, receive the same salary and equity offer,” with “no exceptions.”
And the exchange giant also wants to bin four-year new hire grant policies in favor of year-long grants. “Crypto has historically been volatile,” reasoned Brock, adding, “It’s a reasonable assumption that our stock price may be, too.”
The switch would be welcomed, he opined, claiming,
“As we grow, we anticipate more candidates will value predictability in their annual compensation. Instead of a four-year new hire grant (standard at many tech companies), employees will receive annual grants, sized at one-year targets that vest in their entirety each year.”
The company says that it has bolstered its “headcount” by 100% over the past year, and claims to have hired staff members in six new countries in the same time period.