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62% of Employers Plan to Bump Up Salaries to Attract Workers

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As the labor shortage persists among certain sectors in the U.S., 62% of employers plan to bump up base salaries for employees in the next six months to attract new hires, a recent survey reveals.

On top of that, half of the respondents indicate they’re offering bonuses as a carrot-dangling measure to entice people to join their workplaces. However, only 1 in 5 expect to still offer this at the end of 2021.

Show me the money: Signing and retention bonuses

A large majority (82%) of employers express a perception of a labor shortage. As such, they’re doing what they can to attract workers by offering sign-up bonuses and pay increases.

While about 55% of survey respondents report offering signing bonuses to both hourly and salaried workers, that bonus varies between the types of employees. Per data culled from, the median bonus for hourly employees is $1,000, and ranges from no bonus to $3,120. Meanwhile, the median bonus for salaried workers is $5,000, and runs the gamut from $1,000 to $10,570.

As far as retention bonuses go, 21% of employers surveyed say they’re using them to keep workers on board. Among those, nearly 4 in 10 (38%) offer them to both hourly and salaried employees. The median amount for a retention bonus among hourly workers for six months of service is $1,000, and ranges from $0 to $5,600. The median retention bonus for exempt, or salaried, employees is $7,500 for 12 months of service, ranging between $350 and $18,000.

Stick around and I’ll pay you more

Among employers surveyed by, just more than 50% say they’re likely to increase the pay of a new salaried hire in the next six months, while close to 10% say they’re very likely to bump up pay for salaried workers. About 40% say they’re not likely to increase the pay of new salaried workers in the next six months.

For hourly workers, about 50% of respondents indicate they’re likely to offer a pay increase for new hires in the next six months. Nearly 20% say they’re very likely to offer a bump in pay, while more than 30% say making this move is unlikely.

But while employers are doing what they can to attract and retain workers, many people are still leaving their jobs. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, 3.9 million Americans left their jobs in June. Those making a go of their own can tap into financing options such as a small business loan to get their venture off the ground.

Methodology: Between June 6 and July 15, 2021, conducted a survey involving 405 organizations in the U.S. and Canada. The data collected was culled from participants in seven different roles, ranging from individual contributor to executive. Nearly 50% of respondents work for companies with 500 or fewer employees, while nearly 24% work for employers with 5,000 to 10,0000 full-time employees.


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