PayAnalytics is the 2019 Wharton People Analytics Conference Startup Competition Winner | Watch the winning pitch.


About the company

PayAnalytics was founded when a frustrated HR manager came to us after several well-intentioned, yet unsuccessful, efforts to address his firm’s gender pay gap through annual salary reviews. Looking back, he realized that the pay gap had not shrunk, and he had no obvious answer on how best to close the gap. PayAnalytics solves this problem, offering a suite of compensation analytics tools focused on helping companies measure and close their gender pay gaps.

Two of the founders, Dr. Anderson and Dr. Bjarnadottir are both experienced in operations research and data analytics consulting, solving problems using mathematical modeling. Combined, they have 10 years of consulting experience and 3 years of experience in software development. As professors in business schools, their job is to communicate complex analytics to non-technical audiences. They also have multiple scholarly publications applying analytics in finance, health care and sports, and most importantly People Analytics.

Dr. Margret Vilborg Bjarnadottir - Founder


Dr. Margret Vilborg Bjarnadottir

Dr. Margret Vilborg Bjarnadottir is an Assistant Professor of Management Science and Statistics at Robert H. Smith School of Business. Dr. Bjarnadottir holds a B.Sc. degree in Mechanical and Industrial Engineering from the University of Iceland and a Ph.D. in Operations Research from Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Dr. David Anderson - Founder


Dr. David Anderson

Dr. David Anderson is an Assistant Professor of Analytics at the Villanova School of Business. He has worked as an analytics consultant at Booz Allen Hamilton and Elder Research, for a variety of government and commercial clients. David received his Ph.D. in operations management from the University of Maryland. His undergraduate degree is in Applied Math from The College of William and Mary.

Sigurjon Palsson - Founder


Sigurjon Palsson

Sigurjon Palsson is the CEO of PayAnalytics. He was the COO of Arion Bank from 2011 to 2017. He was consequently the senior manager for HR when the bank in 2015 became the first large enterprise in Iceland to get a certification based on the Equal Pay Standard, which has now been put into law in Iceland. Sigurjon is a Civil Engineer from the University of Iceland and has two master’s degrees, one in Construction Management from the Royal Institute of Technology in Sweden (KTH) and one in Logistics from the Massachusetts Institution of Technology (MIT).

Gardar Hauksson - Founder


Gardar Hauksson

Gardar Hauksson is the CTO of PayAnalytics. He is a Software Engineer with extensive experience in development and management of software projects. He has worked on a communication platform at Google, web backend infrastructure at, app development at Gangverk which he co-founded and on medical software at Nox Medical. Gardar holds a B.Sc. and M.Sc. degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Iceland and Boston University respectively.

Academic collaborator

David Gaddis Ross

David Gaddis Ross is the R. Perry Frankland Professor at the University of Florida’s Warrington College of Business Administration. Before that, he was an Assistant and Associate Professor at Columbia Business School. His research examines the governance of firms, with a particular focus on gender issues in top management, and the formal foundations of strategy. He received a Ph.D. in economics from New York University’s Stern School of Business, a M.B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business, and a B.S. in computer-science/mathematics and economics from Binghamton University. Prior to becoming an academic, David worked for over a decade on Wall Street, where he advised governments and firms on mergers & acquisitions, restructuring, privatization, and cross-border tax and accounting arbitrage. He has extensive experience applying quantitative methods to solving real business problems and explaining technical subjects to non-technical audiences.

Academic collaborator

Cristian Dezső

Cristian Dezső is an Associate Professor in the Logistics Business & Public Policy department at the University of Maryland’s R.H. Smith School of Business. His research examines the impact of top managers’ attributes, in particular gender, on firm policies, such as pay and promotions, and financial performance. In addition, his applied game theory research examines issues related to firm reputation, technology adoption, and international firm expansion. He received a Ph.D. in economics and international business from New York University’s Stern School of Business, an M.A. in economics from the Central European University in Budapest, Hungary, and a B.A. in business from the “Babes-Bolyai” University in Cluj, Romania. Prior to joining the Smith School of Business, Cristian worked in consulting, specializing in applying economic analysis to issues ranging from antitrust to complex litigation.