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August 6, 2012

The Ups and Downs of Compensation Trends

Filed under: General HR Buzz1:47 pm

I’ve always been interested in trends in compensation.  However, this hasn’t been the most uplifting area to be interested in over the past few years.  In fact, it has been downright depressing…until recently.  The U.S. wage trends in Q2 2012 have provided a welcome relief to the downward trend.  For the first time since 2009, the year-over-year gains increased at a whopping 2.3%.

I’m sure you are keenly aware of the inactivity in compensation upward movement over the past few years.  I found information from the PayScale Index to be interesting as it summarizes what actually happened in the U.S. since 2007:

  • 2007 – 2008 – Do you remember the 5% national wage growth?  That’s what we were experiencing when compared to the 2006 Index starting point.
  • 2008 – Then the end of 2008 came along.  As the recession worsened, wages dropped dramatically.
  • 2009 – Q2 was when things seemed to bottom out.
  • 2010 – And the remained bottomed out in 2010.
  • 2011 – Finally, things began to warm up, ever so slightly.  The national wage levels finished the year up about 1%.

The PayScale Index, which follows the change in wages of employed U.S. workers, has a great website that also explores changes in industries and occupations.  To read more, including seeing how your salary compares to others, click here.



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