Employers Plan Average Pay Increases of 3.9 Percent Next Year, Despite Poor Economy

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Preliminary results from the 35th Annual WorldatWork Salary Budget Survey, the largest survey of its kind, show pay budgets growing steadily from 2008 to 2009 in the U.S. and Canada. The actual increase in salary budgets was 3.9 percent in 2008 and is projected to rise again by 3.9 percent in 2009, according to the survey.

Preliminary results from the 35th Annual WorldatWork Salary Budget Survey, the largest survey of its kind, show pay budgets growing steadily from 2008 to 2009 in the U.S. and Canada. The actual increase in salary budgets was 3.9 percent in 2008 and is projected to rise again by 3.9 percent in 2009, according to the survey.

Key survey findings:

  •     For the third consecutive year, participating organizations are reporting that, on average, 91 percent of employees can expect to receive an increase in base pay this year. Base pay increases may come from general increases, merit increases or other increases, excluding promotional increases.
  •     Employers are paying for performance as well: high performers can expect raises over 5 percent while below average performers can expect 2 percent or less.
  •     Survey results indicate that very few employers are planning zero raises.

After seeing salary budget increases sink to historic lows in 2003 and 2004 and climb slowly from 2005 through 2008, this year’s study confirms that the growth in salary budgets is holding steady indicating labor markets are stable. The WorldatWork Salary Budget Survey is the most comprehensive salary budget survey with more than 2,700 organizations reporting an actual average total salary budget increase of 3.9 percent across all employee categories, regions and industries for 2008.

In-depth WorldatWork Salary Budget Survey data will be released in early August and will include results for North American regions, major U.S. metropolitan areas, Canadian provinces, major industries as well as data by organization size. For the first time, it will report state-level data.

Journalists and reporters interested in a copy of the full survey report may contact Marcia Rhodes at [email protected] or 480-304-6885. All others, please contact Customer Services at 877-951-9191.

About the Survey:
Survey data was collected in April 2008 and the survey report will be published in early August. Survey respondents are WorldatWork members employed in the HR, compensation and benefits departments of mostly large North American companies. Combined, the survey’s participating organizations represent 13.6 million North American employees.

Note to editors: A salary budget survey is different from a salary survey in that a salary survey compares salary data for specific positions. On the other hand, a salary budget survey is a benchmark used by employers and HR practitioners to support pay increase recommendations. Base pay increases may come from merit increases, cost of living increases and general increases (promotional increases are excluded). Salary budgets – the total amount of money allocated by an organization for all employee salaries – do not include other employment hard costs, i.e. medical/dental insurance, payroll taxes, 401(k) match, etc.

About WorldatWork®:
The Total Rewards Association

WorldatWork (http://www.worldatwork.org) is a global human resources association focused on compensation, benefits, work-life and integrated total rewards to attract, motivate and retain a talented workforce. Founded in 1955, WorldatWork provides a network of more than 30,000 members and professionals in 75 countries with training, certification, research, conferences and community. It has offices in Scottsdale, Arizona, and Washington, D.C.

News Release

West Coast Contact:
Marcia Rhodes, APR
Media Relations
WorldatWork
Phone: 480/304-6885
E-mail: marcia.rhodes @ worldatwork.org

East Coast Contact:
Carrie Clark
Media Relations
WorldatWork
Phone: 202/315-5517
E-mail: carrie.clark @ worldatwork.org

This press release was distributed through eMediawire by Human Resources Marketer (HR Marketer: http://www.HRmarketer.com) on behalf of the company listed above.

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Marcia Rhodes
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