XpertHR: Pay awards positive, median remains steadfast

According to the latest data from pay analysts at XpertHR, pay awards in the three months to the end of May 2017 remain anchored at 2%.

The research is based on the largest sample of pay deals collected in the UK. XpertHR collects details of pay settlements for around 1,600 employee groups each year and its database contains more than 40,000 pay settlements dating back to 1984.

It has been 3 years since the figure was more than 2%, and more than 8 years since the awards were at 3% or higher.

Pay awards settling at below the rate of Retail Prices Index (RPI) inflation, which was 3.5% in April 2017, creates the largest negative gap between the two indicators since December 2011.

Almost half (45.7%) of pay awards are higher than employees received a year ago, with less than one-third (31.8%) lower. The research also reveals that half of all pay awards are worth between 1.5% and 2.5%, with 2% being the most common pay award.

April saw the first public-sector pay awards of 2017 take effect, which once again highlights the divergence in pay award levels between the public and private sectors. Many of the most prominent deals in the public sector – such as those for the pay review body groups including the NHS, Armed Forces and Prison Service – remain focused on a 1% pay award.

This is all in contrast to a few, more positive signs on pay, including the lowest number of pay freezes on record at 4.5% and, at the top of the range, higher pay awards.

A 2% pay award was recorded in the services, manufacturing and production sectors. While this marks the sixth consecutive rolling quarter of pay awards at this level in the manufacturing and production sector, it is the first time since December 2016 that service sector deals have reached this level.

XpertHR pay and benefits editor Sheila Attwood said  “Despite some positive signs on pay awards over the last rolling quarter, such is the prevalence of the 2% pay award that we would need a considerable number of higher (or lower) pay awards to pull off a shift in the median from this level. Our feeling is that this won’t happen in the short term.”

The next press release on pay settlement trends will be released on 29 June 2017.

Thursday, 25 May 2017

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XpertHR: Pay awards positive, median remains steadfast
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