Architecture’s compensation issues arise from inequitable opportunities, valuation of work, and pay practices. Removing compensation gaps supports talent recruitment, development, and retention—along with the growth of individuals, firms, and the profession. This guide discusses wage disparities in architecture, including their origins and impacts. It establishes how compensation equity spans four dimensions (transparency, alignment, compliance, and fairness) and provides questions to consider when assessing organizations’ compensation.

You’ll also learn the legal factors related to unfair, discriminatory compensation and steps to increase compensation equity.


Chapter 3: Compensation >

Compensation in architecture

EQxD Metrics: Pay Equity Series (3 parts) - Annelise Pitts - Equity by Design (2017)

Three-part series reviews the salary data from the Equity by Design Survey. Part 1 describes the state of the pay gap in architecture. Part 2 discusses the primary forces that affect the wage gap. Part 3 addresses ways to close the pay gap through policies and practices.

Learn more about the EQxD Pay Equity Series >

AIA Compensation Report 2017 - AIA

Tool compares compensation data for thirty-nine architecture firm positions. Looks at trends in architectural compensation and what incentives are being offered to retain talent.

Purchase the AIA Compensation Report >

Salary Calculator - AIA

Calculator uses salary data from the compensation tool to provide mean and median salaries for various architectural positions, considering geographic location and firm revenue.

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Guides and toolkits

Bias Interrupters

Offers many tool kits and worksheets for individuals and organizations to interrupt bias. See their tool kits for compensation and performance evaluations.

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Interrupting Bias in Performance Evaluations - Women's Leadership Edge

Webinar that gives examples of how bias affects performance evaluations, which can be used to determine promotions and merit increases, and gives guidelines for developing a review process that eliminates bias.

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Managing Pay Equity - SHRM (2018)

Provides an overview of the pay gap and laws related to pay equity and offers in-depth guidelines for reviewing pay policies for fairness and for improving policies.

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re:Work Guide: Structure and Check for Pay Equity - Google

Several-part guide for analyzing pay procedures - starts with an overview of pay gap and high-level goals organizations should have regarding pay policies, then provides specific guidelines for reviewing and adjusting policies that may be inequitable.

Access re:Work Guide >

Wage gaps

The Simple Truth about the Gender Pay Gap - AAUW (2018)

Defines the gender pay gap and what causes it and shows how it affects different demographic groups. Suggests ways to address the gap for different groups of people: individuals, employers, and the government. Offers guidelines to address gender-based discrimination at work.

Learn more about The Simple Truth about the Gender Pay Gap >

Graduating to a Pay Gap - Christianne Corbett and Catherine Hill - AAUW (2012)

Study of the wage gap between men and women college graduates working full time one year after graduating. Discusses the impact of this immediate pay gap and the student loan debt burden it places on women.

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How to Achieve Gender Equality in Pay - The Milken Institute Review - Claudia Goldin (2015)

Examines the wage gap between genders, factoring for education, age, experience, and industry. Looks at how different job structures affect the gap. Conclusion: the amount of time worked in a week affects hourly rate; those who work longer hours tend to make more money per hour as well.

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The Fatherhood Bonus and the Motherhood Penalty: Parenthood and the Gender Gap in Pay - Thirdway - Michelle J Budig (2014)

Analyzes the impact of having a family on the salaries of mend and women: men's salaries tend to increase with each child while women's tend to decrease.

Learn more about The Fatherhood Bonus and the Motherhood Penalty >

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