With employment figures in the UK at their highest since records began (in 1971), wage growth remains well below inflation.
The Office for National Statistics said average weekly earnings growth including bonuses slowed modestly to 1.4 percent in the three months through December, in line with forecasts.
Excluding bonuses, pay grew by 1.3 percent, slightly undershooting expectations. That was the weakest rise since three months through June 2010.
Wage growth remains well below inflation, which held at 2.7 percent in January for the fourth consecutive month.
Whilst companies have to remain competitive to win business and keep their costs low – keeping staff morale high can be a struggle if any increase in wages remains below inflation.
So with the job market so buoyant do workers need to move jobs to ensure they get a pay rise?
If you feel you’re underpaid then just walking is not always the best policy, particularly if you enjoy your work and are good at it. Think about approaching your boss to negotiate a pay rise but plan your strategy in advance and ensure you give your boss good reasons why you are worth more.
Bosses looking to keep good people on know that it is not only money that keeps people motivated, but a combination of security, pay, challenge, feeling valued and work enjoyment. Knowing that your company provide all of this will ensure a low turnover of staff and a happy workforce.
If you really believe that your company don’t tick all the boxes above, as an employee you need to assess what motivates you at work and how you can achieve that – but it’s a two way street. You have to provide the goods that the company employ you for – hard work, getting it right, achieving results – will you do this in a new company who will pay you more?
So a big question – do you stay or do you go?
If you decide to go and your current company then decide to give you the pay rise you wanted, what do you do? Well you could ask why this didn’t happen before, will the company still value you when they know you have been “disloyal”. You have now made your employer aware that you are unhappy, from this day on your commitment will always be in question. Accepting a counter offer rarely changes the factors that drove you to look for a new job in the first place.