Wages, benefits up slightly ahead of the holiday season
- U.S. salaries have grown steadily since the summer's decline in pay, Glassdoor Local Pay Reports show. The news comes just ahead of the holiday season, with the biggest increases occurring in in-store and online retail positions. Warehouse associates' pay rose 4.3%, store managers' 4.0%, cashiers' 3.7% and warehouse associates' 4.3%.
- An aging U.S. population has increased the demand for insurance agents and healthcare workers, and with the demand come increases of wages. Salaries rose 5.3% for insurance agents and 3.4% for licensed practical nurses. Tech companies looking for ways to grow have increased the demand for business development managers. Salaries for these workers rose by 3.8%. Pay increases were slowest for java developers (0.3%) and programmer analysts (0.2%). Pay for maintenance workers and lawyers decreased by 0.6% and 0.2%, respectively.
- Meanwhile, benefits have experienced growth concurrent with wages, the Chicago Tribune reports, citing U.S. Department of Labor statistics for Q3. Benefits, which include health coverage and pensions, increased 0.8% since the end of Q2 2017.
Glassdoor's numbers match other studies on wage growth, including a Q4 jobs forecast study from CareerBuilder in which 73% of employer respondents said they planned to raise wages ahead of the holiday rush, and 51% said those increases would include seasonal workers.
That the biggest increases affect retail and warehouse workers is a reflection of larger trends in seasonal hiring practices. A tight labor market means retailers struggling to find skilled talent will need to up their appeal to candidates with both incentives and better wages.
But more money isn't everything, of course, and employers have also started appealing to workers' other needs — especially scheduling flexibility. To that end, employers report an uptick in the amount of flexible and remote-work options available in Q4. A recent report from ManpowerGroup showed retail job seekers were twice as likely to seek part-time work compared to workers in other industries.
Employers who offer even slightly higher wages in a tight labor market may have an edge in filling positions and retaining workers. Some also hope that higher wages and benefits for retail workers, coupled with other changes like performance reviews, might slow some of the high turnover that the industry experiences.
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