Marathon Oil takes part in benchmarking survey every two years

Case study: Marathon Oil

Alongside 15 other companies, Marathon Oil takes part in a benchmarking survey every two years for the upstream oil industry to produce data relevant for an older workforce.

The firm takes part in Hewitt Associates’ Benefits Index which defines the value of the benefit relative to a set of assumptions and values. David Payne, compensation and benefits manager at Marathon Oil, explains: "It is important because a company could be paying proportionately more money into a pension plan because it has a relatively elderly workforce and an historical deficit. Whereas another company with a younger workforce could deliver the same level of benefit with a lower level of contribution."

This is in order to achieve proportionality; paid leave is expensive compared to benefits such as life insurance. "So if you compare benefits on an index basis, you avoid getting into a cherry picking situation where an employee could demand we increase our payouts for life insurance to match those of a competitor," he says.