52% of HR staff consider paying above the average rate

Pay rise retain talentMore than half of HR professionals are considering handing their employees pay increases above the market average to retain talent, according to research.

A poll of 125 senior HR, diversity and inclusion, reward and people professionals at FTSE 100 businesses by insights firm HR DataHub found 52% were mulling an above-average pay rise for staff.

The organisation’s Outlook 2022 report revealed that 14% of respondents already had this deal in place in an attempt to maintain current staffing levels, while 9% planned to implement it in the next 12 months.

Meanwhile, on the recruitment side, 17% of those polled admitted they already paid incoming staff above the market rate and 49% said they would consider it. More than a fifth (21%) already pay a sign on bonus and 37% would consider bringing one in.

The research also suggested that retention bonuses may be used as a tactic to retain staff, as 28% already have this in place, 4% are implementing it in the next 12 months and 45% would consider it. More than a third (34%) said they would consider using bonuses above the market rate.

Elsewhere, 70% promote their flexible working practices in an attempt to attract new talent, with a further 16% looking to implement such a move in the next 12 months. Half already use additional wellbeing benefits as part of their recruitment strategy, 14% are implementing them in the next 12 months and nearly a third (31%) would consider the idea.

David Whitfield, co-founder and CEO of HR DataHub, explained that the report illustrated an “astonishing” shift in employee strategy amongst the UK’s biggest businesses.

“Over half of the companies we surveyed said they will be looking to increase their headcount in 2022, which means the talent marketplace is only set to get feistier,” he said.

“Employees have become increasingly cautious about joining and staying in workplaces that pay lip service to environmental, social, and corporate governance efforts. Leaders must ensure these pledges are not empty.”