Changes to salaries: Pay rises and prospects
This year’s survey offers firm evidence that pay is rising for the majority of IEMA members. Almost three-quarters (73.5%) of respondents report that their total annual income increased during 2014 (figure 8) – compared with 58.9% in 2013, 56.9% in 2012 and 54.2% in 2011. One in five (21.1%) respondents to the 2015 poll reported no change in their salary, down from 32% the previous year. A small proportion (5.4%) experienced a decrease in pay, down from 7.4% in 2013.
These findings compare favourably to the latest employee outlook survey from the main HR body, the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development. It reports that only around half of the 2,250 employees surveyed said that their salary went up in 2014, with 21% experiencing a pay freeze. The IEMA figures will include some who have moved to a new job or role (or who may have more than one job) so cannot be taken as reflective of the extent of across-the-board pay increases or pay freezes. Nonetheless, the fact that a comfortable majority of respondents experienced a salary increase in 2014 reflects a significant positive change in pay patterns since the recession.
Although the labour market is still relatively slack, employers report difficulty finding people with the right skills for specialist, especially technical, roles. This is certainly true for environment and sustainability skills in the manufacturing, engineering or construction sectors. On the other hand, fierce competition in the consultancy market, public sector budget cuts and uncertainty in the energy sector are some of the factors helping to keep pay rates in check to some extent.
Figure 8 Change in annual salary in 2014