Request for Proposal: Consulting Services for a Salary Survey/Analysis - Washington , Washington DC, United States, 56933

Project Overview:
The Communications Network, a nonprofit organization that connects, gathers and informs nonprofit and foundation communications professionals, seeks a consultant or consulting team to develop a benchmarking/salary survey and compensation analysis among a peer group of similar organizations, including small nonprofits and membership associations, located in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area.

This new project will ensure The Network's compensation practices are current and in line with the local and national markets, reflect the organization's core values of community, learning, and leadership, and ensure racial and gender equity.

Please review the attached appendix for The Communications Network's compensation philosophy for further guidance. Job descriptions for Network staff will be provided to the consultant.

About The Communications Network:
The Communications Network is a collegial, peer-driven community of foundation and nonprofit communications professionals who share ideas, evidence, and lessons about how to improve lives by effectively communicating vision, problems, and solutions. We address three issues facing professionals working in communications for social good: connection, learning, and leadership. As an organization, we place a high priority on advancing representation and DEI within our own network and across the broader field of communications for good.
The Communications Network counts over 2,000 members from foundations and nonprofits across the globe. Among our members are the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, World Wildlife Fund, the Ford Foundation, NPR, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.

What We're Trying to Achieve:
The Communications Network has experienced rapid growth over the past five years, increasing in size from a staff of one to now having five full-time employees. Accordingly, our operating budget has grown from $650,000 to over $2 million.

In keeping with our goal to be a fair and competitive employer that is able to attract and retain talent, it's in our best interest to provide total compensation that is in line with similar, nonprofit and philanthropy-serving organizations in our sector and the country - and is aligned with our values of diversity, equity, and inclusion.

This project will help The Network's Board and CEO ensure our compensation practices are in line with the local marketplace, accepted best practices, and our core values.

Scope of Work:
The scope of work for this project includes, but is not limited to:
  • A comprehensive look at both salary and total compensation at analogous organizations for staff titles analogous to The Network's - including CEO/ED compensation.
  • When establishing compensation benchmarks, The Communication Network defines the appropriate peer group as a mix of similar organizations, including small nonprofits and membership associations, located in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area.
  • ComNet defines total compensation as the combination of base salary and employee benefits when establishing the target range of paying within +/- 10% of the 60th percentile of the benchmark.
  • This includes retirement policies, paid time off policies, parental leave policies, and all other related benefits generally included in total compensation.
  • The consultant/team should establish regular check-ins during the project's development to ensure the project is on track and in line with expectations.
  • Defining the marketplace and environment in which The Network operates in terms of total compensation.
  • Analyzing the findings of the above work in a clear, coherent, and actionable manner.
  • Helping The Network's Board develop a clear understanding of how our organization's compensation compares to similar organizations.
Written report that:
  • Details the current salaries and total compensation for equivalent positions to The Communications Network's staff titles (with a focus on philanthropy-serving organizations, like the United Philanthropy Forum, BoardSource, and the Council on Foundations located in Washington DC).
  • Including comparisons of The Communications Network's compensation to similar organizations
  • Is exhaustive in scope - includes comparisons to other national organizations, with a focus on those operating in the Washington DC metro region.
  • Includes recommended compensation ranges for all Network staff roles - including CEO/ED.
  • Includes an executive summary of findings and recommendations with charts and graphics that are clear, and easy to understand.
  • An accompanying presentation deck (built-in PowerPoint, or Google Slides) that can visually present the information in the report in a high-level and digestible format.
  • The consultant is responsible for identifying an appropriate market segment for survey data- like the United Philanthropy Forum's 2019 Compensation and Benefits Report - and sharing methodologies for collecting/analyzing data.
It's possible and likely that The Communications Network Board may wish to meet with the consultant/consulting team leading this work to discuss the findings in person or via video.

The project should not take more than 6 weeks to complete. Our deadline for final and approved deliverables is Friday, April 17, 2020.

Project Leads:
Sean Gibbons, Network CEO and Tristan Mohabir, Network Director.
Tristan Mohabir () will be the designated point of contact for this project.

Project Budget:
Our budget for this project ranges from $6,000-$10,000.

Submission Requirements:
Please submit:
  • A written proposal (not longer than 3 pages) outlining your qualifications and approach to the scope of work/timeline/budget based on the information provided and previous experience by or before February 7.
  • Proposals will be reviewed on a rolling basis and a selection will be made no later than February 28, 2020.
In addition:
  • A profile of the consultant/consultant team: those who will work directly and indirectly on the project. This includes names, titles, and a statement of experience as it relates to this project.
  • Client examples and/or sample deliverables created by the consultant or consultant team on similar projects to work described above.
  • Please send submissions via email to and .
  • Responses to this RFP must be received by February 7, 2020. A determination will be made by the end of February.
Diversity, equity, and inclusion are core values of The Communications Network and we welcome and encourage proposals from businesses owned by women and people of color.



The Communications Network (ComNet) provides competitive, fair, and reasonable* compensation to attract and retain talent in service to its mission and commensurate with its status as a nonprofit organization focused on communications for good.

Our compensation philosophy applies to all full-time and part-time Communications Network employees.
  • The Communications Network recognizes and commits to compensation that is (1) dignified and provides a living wage for its employees and (2) requires racial and gender equity in all pay practices.
  • When establishing compensation benchmarks, ComNet defines the appropriate peer group as a mix of similar organizations, including small nonprofits and membership associations, located in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area.
  • ComNet defines total compensation as the combination of base salary and employee benefits when establishing the target range of paying within +/- 10% of the 60th percentile of the benchmark.
  • Base pay shall reflect the combination of role requirements (capabilities, background, shared expectations), affordability (office location, ComNet financial plan and business targets), and external market (market rate for each position, benchmarking).
Six Principles About Compensation at The Communications Network
  • We are committed to pay equity, specifically through the lens of gender and race. This means employees of all genders receive equal pay for work of equal value, and as with gender, race, ethnic background, and/or country of origin have no bearing on compensation.
  • We believe in the dignity of a living wage and commit that all employee compensation exceeds the requirements for a living wage in the headquarters region (Washington D.C. area). Our regular compensation benchmarking takes this into account. Communications Network defines "living wage" as the income level to meet minimum standards given local cost of living, as described in press coverage and based on tools such as the MIT Living Wage Calculator.
  • ComNet is a nonprofit, like most of its members, and hires people passionate about its mission. ComNet doesn't match pay at for-profit companies.
  • It is likely that employees could be paid more elsewhere. ComNet's goal is paying salaries within +/- 10% of the 60th percentile of its regular benchmark/salary surveys. This means we will meet or exceed the median of the market (50% - meaning half of the companies would pay more, half would pay less) but not be on the leading edge of compensation based on our benchmark data.
  • ComNet conducts salary benchmarking research (market survey data) approximately every 3 years to validate salary ranges among a peer group of similar organizations..... click apply for full job details