Lighthouse Research names CompTool one of the most innovative compensation softwares

In 2020, CompTool was a fledgling startup, barely making its mark on Lighthouse Research’s compensation technology report. CompTool was in the lower left-hand quadrant of the Capabilities/Innovation matrix, signifying low capabilities and little innovation. At that time, CompTool was a self-funded, bootstrapped venture steered solely by me, Justin Hampton. Honestly, at the time, I was just happy we were on the same matrix as some of the compensation management software behemoths.

The Humble Beginnings of our Compensation Management Software

I won’t argue or dispute our placement several years ago. It was just and fair. Back in 2020, CompTool was still securing the essentials and ironing out the bugs. It was a lot of work that first year as a one-man shop, but despite these challenges and our limited resources, CompTool still had many successes as our early clients recognized the potential of CompTool. Some of our first clients included TOMs shoes and Home Depot, believe it or not… They found CompTool simple to use, affordable, and effective. I’d like to think they saw the spark of something great and wanted to be a part of our journey. I think that it says a lot that almost of our inaugural clients from 2020 are still with us today.

The Leap to Innovation in 2023

Fast forward to 2023, and CompTool has made a quantum leap. In 2023, CompTool has moved from the bottom left of the capabilities and innovation diagram to the far right. Today, the Tool is recognized as one of the most innovative companies in the compensation management software landscape. What makes this achievement even more remarkable is that CompTool was built on a shoestring budget—our entire year’s budget was probably what our competitors were spending on advertising each month. But we continued to grow and take on new clients.

Without an advertising budget or industry contacts, CompTool’s success and growth could only be attributed to really getting the tool right and treating clients right. Once we secured the essentials, CompTool had the freedom to play jazz and build some of the most unique and innovative features available for market pricing.

Some of our unique and innovative features include:

CompTool’s Most Innovative Features

  • Multi-Country-Multi-Matching: If you’ve got a job family with 12 job levels in 20 countries, CompTool allows you to market price all 240 iterations (12 job levels x 20 countries) of that job instantly. That’s right… you can market price every job level in every pay market by just pricing a single job in a single pay market. CompTool takes care of the rest.
  • Year-Over-Year Market Analysis: We do this slightly differently than you may expect. One of our goals is to help you get more out of your salary survey data, and our year-over-year analysis is as naturally engrained in CompTool as Org and Incumbent counts.
  • Recommended Market Matches: Sure, AI is all the rage right now, but getting your market matches right is too risky to leave to the robots for the time being. We’ve incorporated a Rosetta Stone built by Compensation Consultants into CompTool that provides match recommendations for all the major surveys, such as Radford, WTW, Mercer, Culpepper, and Empsight.
  • AI-Powered Job Description Manager: Geneative AI is, however, great for some things and building job descriptions is one of them. We leverage an LLM and a customizable career hierarchy to allow you to write job descriptions on the fly.
  • Squirrel: Our beloved Squirrel is one of our most well-known features. Squirrel is the first tool designed for the compensation analyst to turn pay transparency into a benefit. Squirrel collects job postings (~30M to date) with employer-posted pay ranges and places them in a searchable database. Unlike traditional salary surveys, Squirrel uses publicly available information, allowing you to see data from yesterday and specific to whatever company you want to compare yourself against.

Why We Acknowledge Our Compensation Management Software Competitors

You might wonder why we’d publish a report that shows Payscale and as broader and more innovative compensation management software than CompTool. The reason is simple: we want to know if you agree. While we acknowledge the breadth of these tools and their efforts to do everything under the sun for Compensation teams, we firmly believe that when it comes to market pricing and HR reporting—our niche—CompTool is more innovative. So, if you’re game, let’s grab a few minutes to let you decide if you agree on who is the most innovative in the space.


CompTool has come a long way since its inception. From a one-man operation to a leading innovator in compensation management software, our journey has been nothing short of remarkable (and a hell of a lot of fun). We invite you to be a part of our continued evolution. Experience the future of compensation management with CompTool.

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