December 16, 2017
    Who earns what in the association and nonprofit community

    2017 National Compensation Report published by Association TRENDS


    For the seventh consecutive year, the Association TRENDS national salary survey was conducted from March to May 2017. Though called the “salary survey,” the survey queried information on formal and informal compensation policies, supplemental compensation, and benefits for full-time, parttime, and executive employees. With over 450 responding associations and nonprofits from across the country, the resulting National Compensation Report is one of the most comprehensive nonprofit compensation reports in the country.

    The National Compensation Report contains salary and variable compensation information for over 120 positions, which are grouped into job families (e.g. Accounting/ Finance). Predictably, Executive Management is the highest-paid job family by a significant margin.

    This year’s National Compensation Report contains a new regional breakout: DC-area. While there is a separate DC-area Compensation Report available as well, the 2017 National Compensation Report has included DC-area breakouts due to the unique position of the DC market, which arguably does not belong in either the Northeast market (along with New York City) or the Southeast Market (with cities like Atlanta). Due to the high cost of living in the DC-area, salaries tend to be skewed rather higher than other regional salaries.

    We recognize that there are many factors outside of cost-of-living that affect organization salaries, which is why in addition to analyzing salaries by region, the National Compensation Report also cross-tabulates salaries by budget size, staff size, and organization category. This provides our customers with a broad context through which to study and come to compensation decisions.

    Additionally, the National Compensation Report is a useful tool not only for benchmarking the salaries of new and current employees, but in aiding user decisions concerning raises and bonuses. The “Salary Increase Criteria” section provides indepth information on the factors that survey respondents considered regarding salary increases for both management and non-management positions, looking at both standalone and combinations of merit, cost of living, and longevity salary increase criteria.

    The National Compensation Report also provides a robust benefits section for executives, full-time employees, and part-time employees. Information on employee benefits ranges from healthcare benefits, to employee leave policies, to supplemental executive benefits.

    Much more information is available in the full National Compensation Report, including full job profiles that include weighted average salaries, breakouts by quartiles, and bonus information. To purchase the report, visit or

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