- For the second year in a row, a little less than a fifth of workers report they are "comfortable" at their salary level, according to a new report from Indeed. The survey questioned 1,000 U.S. workers, the majority of whom (75%) received at least one pay increase in the past two years, while 40% had received one in the past year.
- Raises don't appear to be aligned with the tight job market. Still coming in at the low end, 85% of workers report a raise of 6% or less; 44% got 3% or less. The gender disparity appears consistent as well: 45% of men report a raise of 4 to 6%, while 48% of women report a raise of 3% or less.
- Raises met expectations, however, with 53% saying the bump the received was what they thought they'd get. Another 15% revealed they received more than expected, and a quarter of respondents received less than they anticipated. When it comes time to ask for a bump in pay, 25% report they will definitely ask for one in the coming year, while another 26% say it's a possibility.
As tight as the talent market is, wages are still not rising. The Federal Reserve recently announced that it foresees no abrupt wage growth in the near future, even as unemployment rates drop below 4%. Many are confounded by the lack of wage growth in such a challenging market, but most experts anticipate only about 3% increases in the near future.
The reasons for the lack of growth vary, and experts diverge on why they believe raises will remain stagnant. Many are concerned that across-the-board raises that hit before the market opens up would pose a significant impact on the bottom line. Others are concerned about economic and political volatility that could shift market conditions, particularly as more economists warn of a potential recession in the coming years. But generally, wages are part and parcel of the changing nature of talent; as more employers opt to hire contingent workers, wages remain lower as well, Mary Ann Sardone, U.S. Talent Solutions leader at Mercer, previously told HR Dive in an interview.
For workers, the new year brought more minimum wage increases in some states. While workers continue to be split on whether they're compensated fairly or underpaid, money remains a driving factor in whether applicants will pick one job over another.