DXdao Worker Compensation Guidelines 2020

Hello everyone, It is clear based on past work proposals created the last months that there is no clear way to estimate the compensation for individuals who are working for the DXdao. I took the initiative to start a guideline document that can be used to estimate the compensation to be requested by individuals to the DXdao.

Having a worker compensation framework would be very important to estimate future economic expenses of the DXdao, since it is going to be the main (maybe even only) expende from the organization.

The Proposal DOc can be found here, comments enabled

Before adding your comment take in mind that this is not set in stone, it is just a guideline to estimate the compensation in a decentralized GLOBAL organization.

I will be creating a proposal to signal the Worker Compensation Guidelines for 2020 in 15 days, and if all goes well it will be accepted by next month and we will have a more organized worker compensation and responsibilities defined in the Q3-Q4 2020 for each individual working for DXdao :).


I will paste the same thing I said in the other thread:

I think with these revelations:

Developers have to tell us what they need, it’s impossible to discuss budget limitations if developers won’t say what they want or need financially from the treasury. We can debate this for years but we will still never know what they want or what contraints they encounter. Really all developers have to come up with rugged proposals of exactly what they want from the treasury and we can do a fair vote. Stopping development especially from the mix.eth side is a shame this early in the game, you haven’t told us what you want and what you need and defined it in constraints and time. Also we need to understand how it will help DXDAO holders who are in the funding model that are contributing, there cannot be any further contributions if development stops and you won’t tell us what you need - it will stop contributions financially and general community involvement in the DXDAO. So please give us clear guidelines of what you want and also how it will help REP and DXDAO holders, there is no point us contributing to projects that do not help us retain the treasury.


Salaries should be much higher :slight_smile:

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GitLab as a global remote work org (albeit centralized) has dealt with similar issues and found solutions we could adapt and adopt. A really fast and easy way to set rates would be to use Gitlab’s calculator:

Something to consider about localizing rates from Gitlab’s compensation page in the handbook:

Why we pay local rates
Competitive rates for roles vary depending on regions and countries. We pay a competitive rate instead of paying the same wage for the same role in different regions. Paying the same wage in different regions would lead to:

  1. If we start paying everyone the highest wage our compensation costs would increase greatly, we can hire fewer people, and we would get less results.
  2. A concentration of team members in low-wage regions, since it is a better deal for them, while we want a geographically diverse team.
  3. Team members in high-wage regions having much less discretionary income than ones in low-wage countries with the same role.
  4. Team members in low-wage regions being in golden handcuffs and sticking around because of the compensation even when they are unhappy, we believe that it is healthy for the company when unhappy people leave.
  5. If we start paying everyone the lowest wage we would not be able to attract and retain people in high-wage regions, we want the largest pool to recruit from as practical.

As much as I like a simple formula, the reality is compensation is complex and likely needs to vary based on location to be competitive.


While I am pretty much OK with abiding by these guidelines, does this have to pass via Alchemy? I would suggest it does not, as the finality of voting this onto the blockchain implies this is more like law than guidelines. Would pinning this in DAOtalk/telegram/keybase be just as effective?

I’m very curious what other people think.


I think this is a good case for the organization to signal his agreement or disagreement with the compensation guidelines on the smart contract level.The signal proposal will highlight that this are not strict rules, but just a compensation framework that the worker can follow up to submit a clear and solid work proposal, and help the DXdao to estimate how much would need to be allocated from the budget for workers compensations.

I think a similar process can be followed with a budget proposal, where the DXdao can agree on a budget every 3/6 months (?

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I agree! The DXdao should ratify the guidelines which also should just be seen as only guidelines until we figured out a better way to compensate members for work.

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While I agree with all the above, there’s another point to consider.
I think the option to contribute anonymously should always be preserved.
BUT if we’re not going to verify persons location, they can always claim to be from Switzerland or something, thus getting a higher compensation for their work.


I’m not a dxDAO member but am a DAO tourist and participate in DAOs and I find these compensation levels uninspiring and agree that it should be more location-specific. Additionally, it is missing compensation tiers for non-developers. I’m sorry, but just shipping code isn’t going to make something successful. Just look at every project in Ethereum. If the goal is to do R&D for a year then OK, but if it’s to get users, one needs to take “non-devs” more seriously and for them to not be an after-thought.

I think someone mentioned Buffer’s salary calculator in another thread, and coming up with something that’s more simplified with multiple roles can be a better thing to look into.

I think 6 commitment tiers is over-engineering. I’ve thought of such systems before and have deduced that that 3 or 4 is better a number when it comes to recurring compensation.

Level 1 - Commit at least 10 hours a week
Level 2 - Commit at least 20 hours a week
Level 3 - Commit at least 30 hours a week
Level 4 - Commit at least 40 hours a week (full-time)

If people commit less than 10 hours a week, the work is likely very adhoc and one should submit a proposal detailing what they did and ask for compensation for that. The worker compensation guidelines should have hourly rates per role/experience level.

I don’t think privacy invading time tracking tools are necessary, but someone can “apply” to work to the DAO for recurring compensation, pledge to work at a certain level (and they do this after getting some of their adhoc work approved and paid for).

Then I think the DAO can self-correct if a person seems to be obviously slacking after they get approved for their MRR (monthly recurring revenue hehe) - it’s pretty easy to understand engagement levels based on generally observing the work-product of the person - having worked in many organizations of “volunteers” before, it is very obvious when someone is putting in time.

Then I’d say that every quarter DAO members should do 360 evaluations of all other members and Agree/Disagree with the tiers. Ideally, if someone can’t adhere to their commitment, they self-demote themselves. Try to build more self-regulation and honesty into the system. Like people can use time-tracking tools personally, to help themselves realize if they are actually putting in as much as they have committed too, and self-demote themselves, vs. expecting others to review the screen caps (i think this was mentioned on another thread, but bringing it up here).

I find this stuff inspiring to think about and am in the process of writing something up for a DAO i’m designing. If there is room for collaboration to develop a more generic framework for DAOs generally that can be applied to dxDAO at the same time, let me know, happy to brainstorm more – and even better if my contributions can earn me some REP :slight_smile:


Hello @stellarmagnet, thanks for the reply to the topic.

The compensation guidelines never talks about an specific developer role, in fact it is designed in a way that can be used in any role.

I think you misunderstood the commitment levels, this are estimated based on the REP already issued to the worker, time he has been working for DXdao and DXD held in vesting contracts, all this variables can be used to estimate a certain level of commitment form the worker towards DXdao.

“I don’t think privacy invading time tracking tools are necessary” The document never mention the use of tracking tools, also I think it was never mentioned in this topic discussion, so no idea why you are bringing it up if you dont agree in the use of it.

“Then I’d say that every quarter DAO members should do 360 evaluations of all other members and Agree/Disagree with the tiers.”
I think this will be overkill considering that right now the dxdao have very few people working full time. And me personally I would like to see a more collaborative framework, not one where you will compete and evaluate your coworkers.

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My mistake, I just saw the sample salaries there were based on some dev roles. My opinion still stands that different roles should have different salaries though.

Ahh I see, I like that dimension a lot now, it makes a lot of sense!

Sorry, I was just brain dumping, had nothing to do with what was in your document (it was a comment someone made in the budgeting thread)

Okay, I think I thought the intention of the guidelines were to develop a framework to recruit and retain full-time talent (recurring labor). If that’s not the case, then a lot of these ideas I have shared don’t fully apply. At the end of the day, there is a limited amount of capital and people are competing for jobs, that’s just the way the world works. If we want to scale DAOs, we need to think about this. Worker-owned cooperatives have termination procedures in all bylaws. If the way dxDAO does compensation is someone submitting a proposal to get paid every month – everyone is evaluating when they decide to vote yes or no - hence competition and evaluation already exists. If the funds requested < budget, then there is less competition, but as more talent is attracted, all of a sudden people need to make choices.

But yeah, I’m just brain dumping as I think a lot about the importance of job security when it comes to working for DAOs. If my outsider views aren’t a good use of time, I can opt out of the conversation :slight_smile:

Augusto, thank you for start this important topic. I want to share my view on dxDAO worker compensation guidelines based on your proposal.

  1. I am agree with Monthly Financial Compensation Table. It is looks fair.
  2. I am not sure that REP valuation is correct. I see some risks for creating devs “mafia” who will earn salaries and hold REP deciding what size of salaries is.
  3. dxDAO controls more than 1m of USD assets. REP is a specific asset with value. If REP holders vote for proposal shutdown dxDAO and distribute assets to REP holders 1250000 REP points = 1000000 USD in this case or 1 REP=0.8 USD.
  4. In other hand dxDAO need more participants and dxDAO is open for new members.

My proposal is

Monthly Financial Compensation = Experience Level * Commitment Level

Month Rep Compensation = 500 REP

Total Month Compensation = Month Financial Compensation + 500 REP

Lets say 12 devs work for dxDAO during 12 months. They earn fair market salary in USD (ETH , DXD payment) and 72000 REP points is distributed between devs in equal proportion 500 * 12 * 12. This is good bonus to market salary. Is not it?

And I think if worker agreed to receive DXD instead ETH for month salary payment he can earn bonus +10% in usd value. It is a signal that worker believe in dxDAO products and future DXD value. Worker decide themselves what is DXD ETH proportion of his salary.


Hola @ykplayer8, thanks for the review and reply! Im surprised to see that the REP distribution you are proposing is a less than a 10% of what was already proposed and discussed by the community in the document, thats a huge difference :eyes:

By dev “mafia” you mean technical contributors that are working with worker agreements that were approved by the dxdao community and reviewed by them? This “mafia” is not the most important REP holder group, but certainly a very important one in the DXdao community, since they are the REP holders with the necessary technical and experience to help the community make good technical decisions, and products :slight_smile:, this being said, my opinion is that DXdao should distribute this technical REP carefully.

DXdao will follow the REP holders distributions making sure that no worker gets a higher REP than the maximum allowed, In the doc a REP % limit of 4% is proposed, I think with this limit and a constant issuance of reputation we will build a healthy community.

BUT in order to make the compensation guidelines as flexible as possible I can change the document to not specify a fixed monthly REP compensation, but recommend a range of values, like the between 0.2% and 0.5% of monthly REP compensation, where the worker should explain why he choose that amount in the proposal. @ykplayer8 thats better, what do you think?

I think we will start seeing this type of proposals once the DXdao decides on what the DXD is going to be used, if the community agrees on use it to pay workers.

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Hola a todos, I made (hopefully) the last changes in the DXdao Worker Compensation Guidelines documents. I came up with a simple equation that based on how much time we consider that a worker should be working full time to reach the highest commitment level, where the worker reputation would be near the max REP allowed.
Taken in count that DXdao is in early stages and there is risk involved I used 2 years as that time. This will allow the DXdao identify the interest of the workers to be part of this awesome experiment since they will have the option to commit themselves into a program where they can be technical REP holders with experience and stake in the organization.
The guidelines still provides various ways to earn more REP, and I estimate if those extra REP is received by receiving less financial compensation or bonus REP after reaching some goal a worker can reach max REP in a year.

Document with comments enabled in google docs


Amazing work Augusto and all. I am fine with the doc as it stands. I think it is fair and clear.


Signal Proposal to Validate DXdao Worker Compesation Guidelines 2020 v1.0.0 has been submitted

Signal Proposal

Document Link

Document History

Voting matters, if you agree with the document please vote :slight_smile:


I’m now seeing proposal linking to those guidelines and asking a compensation of 12 000$ per month (144 000$ per year).

Even if people able to provide this amount of value can exist, they are extremely rare.
Except exceptional cases (extremely productive individual who can sometimes produce themselves what a whole team would), I think the dxDAO should be cautious with its finances and refrain to pay those kind of compensations.
I think the dxDAO should offer market based compensation, but here looking at the first proposal, it looks like people are requesting 2 times the market value for their work.

I can understand that some people may have done some unpaid/low paid work for the dxDAO before and in this case I’m not against them asking a bonus (which would match the compensation they are asking in those proposals). But asking these kinds of compensation on the long term would be putting a bad basis on the compensation of dxDAO workers which is likely to be carried over (if they are approved, people will keep asking similar amounts afterward even when they don’t compensate for previously unpaid work and newcomers will use those numbers as basis).

I also think people should come to the dxDAO mainly because it aligns with their goals. In addition to carrying financial risks to the dxDAO, this could lead to attracting people seeing it as an opportunity to profit from the dxDAO due to its high recent raise. Due to REP given to them, this could even have a snowball effect.

I would also like to point that here, the whole dxDAO is basically acting as a startup founder. And one of the really important but hard part of being a startup founder is to say no most of the time.
It may actually be even harder for a DAO to be able to say no often, as the discussions are public and the discussions about whether or not you think someone can provide a specific value are gonna be seen by said person.
But I think it’s crucial to the success of the dxDAO to be able to do so.

I am also wary of drawing people to DXdao for the wrong reasons. The DXdao should be attracting people who share a passion for its mission.

Note that the max that can be paid anyone per month in ETH is $8000 ($96K per year) and the rest is either REP or DXD in 2 year vesting contracts paid at a value equivalent to the curve minting price which is the same as the all time high. The higher proposals referenced (mine being one of them) are asking for $6K per month in ETH, and the rest in vesting DXD. Neither recipient can request REP because they are over the maximum limit. The higher ETH/DXD compensation makes up for no longer being able to earn REP.

That said, $144K per year does feel a bit beyond the means of DXdao given the stage its at, and I would be fine lowering my ask. However, I was following the compensation guidelines arrived at in this thread (after much deliberation), so I think we need to be specific about how the worker compensation guidelines should be modified. For instance, should there be a “total compensation” max of something like $10K per month? And we should also be mindful of keeping the DXdao’s most dedicated and experienced participants motivated even after they have “maxed out” their REP earnings.


Thats not what is happening. The guidelines where design a way DXdao can create worker-organization stable relations by issuing REP for their work, by doing this more REP get distributed, and a “simbiotic” relation is created between the worker and the organization is created. It also distribute REP to workers that earned it, and it does not give REP to workers that already reached their max REP stake.

So here you have to compensate somehow to those workers who are already in commitment level where they cant receive more rep. The worker guidelines establish a maximun compensation in USD and gives the workers an option to change the REP they received for ETH or DXD.

So yes, the max compensation according the guidelines, but if it is high when it is well deserved, if you as a worker reached the maximum commitment level proves that you have been doing a pretty good job and you already established a good relation with the DXdao by being an active member, therefore a high compensation is deserved.

But again, this guidelines provide an estimation and the workers proposals can be rejected if an over-compesation.

If it was REP which is not monetary, I wouldn’t mind. I don’t think REP as a reward but as having to be distributed to get the best governance possible. Having REP is a responsibility, in particular it’s a responsibility toward DXD holders who invested.
Here, however we are seeing DXD which are traded tokens and even if the price you quote is slightly below the real price, that would still amount to a 136,800$ compensation.

I don’t think there should be a maximum compensation, sometimes extremely productive individual work may be worth 144k$/year. I may have encountered one, but those are really rare.

I would go to only add 1/3 of the base compensation when this is labelled in DXD. But to add it even if rep has reached its cap.

I don’t think the proposed REP compensation is wrong. I think that converting REP which are governance rights into DXD which are cash at such a high conversion rate leads to compensation which are almost 2 times the market rate.

That’s why I think the guidelines have to be modified. Because even if it may not have been obvious to people reading them the first time, they in practice lead to 144k$ yearly compensations. I don’t think this was the intended effect.

The dxDAO is still at a startup-equivalent stage. In a few years with highly successful products and adoption I wouldn’t mind. But currently, those compensation corresponds to C-level executive of companies which are way past the startup stage.