With many businesses needing to hire staff for their virtual business, it is very important to take some time to figure out what these expenses might be, and how they will fit into the budget you have decided upon for the virtual world. Typically, Second Life, which is one of the oldest virtual grids, is the most popular, this is where most businesses find themselves locating so for the purpose of this, and computing the numbers, we will use the currency of Lindens. This is the currency that is valid within Second Life. Typically speaking, it takes $200 Lindens or $L to earn $1 USD, which is important as you are trying to determine pay rates.
The average minimum wage in the United States is around $6.75 currently. This translates into an average wage of $1,600L per hour. However, many businesses do not pay this well, and still others pay even better. Trying to decipher the amount that you can reasonably expect to pay is very important so that you are not taken advantage of, but you can also ensure you get good quality employees.
A marketing manager is one of the most common people hired first in a virtual business. This will be the person responsible for lining up marketing opportunities such as sponsoring events at clubs, looking for places to advertise, thinking up marketing incentives and other such tasks. You can typically expect a marketing manager to want a percentage of the sales that they are helping to generate, however most will happily offer their services for approximately $5,000L per week to begin with. This rate typically will not last for very long because it is merely an introductory rate designed to allow them to show their skills. Expect fees to eventually rise to 15-25% of sales.
Sales staff are almost always paid entirely from commissions. With a large number of scripts that can handle this automatically it is one of the simplest ways to pay employees, and still ensure that they are directly responsible for how much they earn. By paying this way, you are not wasting money on someone who is not even attempting to help customers, but you are also rewarding those who are exceptional at selling. A typical commission rate can be as high as 40% depending on the company, though closer to the 25% rate is typically much more common.
You can also expect to need a manager. This is going to be the person who is responsible for the overall operations of the business. Because they are ultimately responsible for the entire process, they are typically going to require a nice wage. You can expect a rate of $2,000L or even higher for a well qualified manager, which is still far below the wages that you would expect to pay a manager at your primary location.
As you can see, the average wages that are paid within a virtual world tend to be much lower, however you can still feel free to reward for good performance and increase pay. Just remember, if you treat the employees fairly, they will be much more inclined to do their very best for you, as compared to trying to pay them the absolute minimum wages possible.