HR PROFESSIONALS are earning higher salaries but are working longer hours. According to a survey of more than 5700 HR professionals, salaries in the HR profession increased by an average 3.25 per cent in 2008. There was a marked difference between the sectors, with private sector workers experiencing the highest increase:
Public sector 3%
Voluntary sector 3.25%
Private sector 4%
However, 73 per cent of the respondents worked 40 hours a week or more, compared with 62 per cent in 2007. Among the respondents in the 2008 survey who recorded working more than 40 hours, 44 per cent worked between 41 and 45 hours a week.
1 in 3 fear poverty in retirement
ONE IN three Australians believes they will not have enough money to support them during retirement. According to recent research, many Australians are living for today and not saving for the future. Almost half (49 per cent) of the respondents are not regular savers; while even those who are saving for a mortgage are not routinely putting money aside, with 20 per cent not having a regular savings scheme in place.
Petrol prices pressure employers to review workplace policies
RISING FUEL prices are changing Australian workplace policies and forcing budgets to be reviewed. According to recent research, nearly 40 per cent of respondents plan to implement a salary adjustment and 10 per cent said they would give employees a one-off payment as a result of the impact of fuel price increases. The research revealed that 49 per cent of respondents expect increases in fuel prices to result in a 10 to 29 per cent increase in operating costs and, in turn, anticipate some changes to their operations. One third of respondents believe that operating costs will be pushed up more than 30 per cent. Some of the initiatives implemented to alleviate the rise in fuel prices cited were:
Generation Y believes layoffs likely
NEARLY A third of generation Y believes that their employers will lay off staff because of the downturn in the economy. According to a survey of 2700 people, Gen Y is the most optimistic group and almost half of the general population said they expect substantial downsizing in the coming months. The research also revealed that 23 per cent of generation Y believes that their boss lacks the skill-set necessary to manage their way successfully through rocky times. A breakdown by profession showed that almost 40 per cent of generation Y in the IT sector believes their company will downsize and almost 55 per cent have no confidence in their senior management.
Managers lose credibility over time
SEVENTY-ONE PER CENT of new employees agree that the person they report to sets a good example, however this level of agreement declines with length of service – with only 57 per cent agreeing after five to 10 years of service that their manager sets a good example. A recent survey of more than 14,000 employee responses from more than 70 organisations showed that employees with less than one year of service provide the lowest levels of disagreement (5 per cent) and the highest levels of agreement (67 per cent) for their direct manager being interested in their job satisfaction.
Employers grapple with impact of weakening dollar
MOST MULTINATIONAL organisations have not implemented solutions for mitigating the impact of currency fluctuations on compensation programs for overseas employees. According to a survey on the impact of the weakening US dollar on compensation in multinational companies, nearly half of respondents (47 per cent) say the depreciating value of the US dollar has had a moderate to significant impact on their compensation programs. Significantly, the majority of respondents (70 per cent) do not use US pay levels and dollar parity as a reference when determining pay rates for non-US based jobs.
Managers demand sophisticated staff benefits
EMPLOYEE SHARE plans top the list of desired staff benefits among Australian managers. According to a recent poll, 53 per cent of managers and staff would prefer to share in the financial success of the business they serve as a means of a benefit. Company car, fuel allowance and laptop were the next most popular benefits at 38, 34 and 25 per cent respectively. Just 13 per cent of respondents cited childcare as their most desired staff benefit.
Australians happy to be made redundant
FORTY-FOUR PER CENT of Australians say they would take a voluntary redundancy. According to a survey of 1150 employees, 22 per cent say they would demand a six to ten-week cash payout rather than the two-week payout that 31 per cent of companies currently offer. Only 22 per cent of Australian companies provide career transition support, such as assistance with up-skilling, retraining and finding a new position, even though 85 per cent of the working population believes that it is the responsibility of their employer to provide this service.
Russian companies battle against talent squeeze
THE COSTS of acquiring and retaining talent in Russia are on the rise and will lead to companies battling it out for the best candidates. According to a recent survey of 193 board-level executives, almost one-half of respondents expect to see costs associated with finding, retaining and remunerating staff increase in the next three years. Respondents expect the proportion of senior executives they recruit from outside Russia to:
Remain the same 49%
Source: Economist Intelligence Unit