Wednesday 1st November 2023
According to new research by specialist recruitment firm Robert Half, almost a third (32%) of employers are finding themselves in the middle of a wage spiral, having to inflate salaries to maintain a competitive edge in the war for talent.
The firm’s 2024 Salary Guide – which analyses and reports on market salaries, hiring trends, and skills requirements across the UK – also revealed that a further 26% of companies are offering additional one-off bonuses to keep hold of their staff.
As seen in the ONS labour market data, annual average pay rises for private sector employees was 8%, yet a closer look at some of the most in-demand skilled roles reveals a more concerning wage spiral snapshot for the inflation embattled economy. Although across the board salary increases are in line with the ONS results, the 2024 Salary Guide forecast shows the average annual pay growth in accounting operations is up by 9.6% year-on-year, where, depending on experience, roles such as Financial Accountant, Purchase Ledger Manager and Billings Clerk would command 26.4%, 26% and 36.2% higher salaries respectively. A similar picture is seen in financial services, where a Financial Controller can expect 16.2% more; within tech, software development professionals are able to secure pay increases up to 24%.
Matt Weston, Senior Managing Director UK & Ireland, at Robert Half, commented: “Many employers may be shocked next year at the salaries that some of their most in demand roles will command. Without careful planning this will weigh heavily on company profitability at a time when businesses are struggling with costs.
“It is no surprise to see financial incentives are perceived to be a top solution. However, continuous pay rises aren’t sustainable and firms need to consider how else they can boost hiring prospects and reduce attrition. With the UK continuing to face significant skills shortages and 75% of employers concerned about the attraction and retention of staff in 2024 according to our research, firms will find themselves with little option but to listen to the employee voice."