Pay settlements in the first few months of this year show a continued upward trend, according to data released today by XpertHR.
Figures for the three months to the end of February 2011 reveal that the median basic pay award is now worth 2.3%. This is the same figure as the three months to January and is 1.3% higher than one year ago.
But while the figures point to an increase in pay settlements, they still fall short of retail prices index (RPI) inflation.
XpertHR pay and benefits editor Sheila Attwood said: “The headline pay award – at 2.3% – is now at its highest level for more than two years. Yet it is still 2.8 percentage points below the current level of RPI (5.1% in January 2011).
“In the private sector, after two years of low pay rises, employee expectations are for pay awards above the levels seen in 2010. However, as companies are still working within tight business conditions, the going-rate for pay deals will remain below 3% in 2011.”
The research looked at 155 pay awards settled in the three months to the end of February 2011.
Further analysis of the data also revealed that:
- Half of all pay deals are worth between 2% and 3%.
- More than seven pay awards in 10 (71.4%) are higher than the previous year.
- Around one pay award in 10 (11%) is a pay freeze.