You certainly ought to be benchmarking what you pay to any specialists you employ against your competitors as well as against regional averages. The reason of course is that your specialists will be doing precisely that and may be tempted away.
There is a surprisingly wide range of sources of pay benchmarking data so you will almost certainly be able to benchmark almost any type of specialist role in virtually any industry.
If it is absolutely crucial for your business to ensure it benchmarks pay with up to date, statistically valid and relevant data then it would probably be well worth paying for. Google “Bespoke pay surveys” and you will find a number of organisations that offer bespoke salary and benefit surveys specific to your business. For a less expensive alternative, Google “Pay surveys” and you will find a number of organisations that will provide benchmark data based on large scale samples of pay and benefits.
Of course, not all companies will want to pay for salary benchmarking. If that applies to your business what do you do?
Many industry bodies will survey members and issue pay and benefits benchmarking data to them. There is sometimes a relatively small charge for copies of these surveys. Check if your company is a member of an industry body.
Specialist staff are frequently members of professional bodies and they will certainly conduct pay surveys. Again, there is sometimes a relatively small charge for copies of these surveys.
There are some “free” pay benchmarking services available on the web but watch out as some of these draw on American based data.
Specialist recruitment agencies will issue annual pay and benefit surveys, usually for no charge. They are often extremely detailed.
Some trade press produce pay and benefits surveys.
Retain a press clippings file from the trade and local press situations vacant.
If using “free” information, always use 2 or preferably 3 sources as these are less reliable than paid for survey.
As a first step, why not pick the phone up and call John or email him and arrange to meet up.
John's website is: http://www.nomizon.co.uk
His credentials: http://www.linkedin.com/in/johntoppin