Hospitality and catering is projected to receive the biggest salary increase in 2018 at 4.6%, according to the 2017 HKSAR Pay Level Survey. This is followed by construction, professional services and property management, and related services, all expected to earn an increase of 4%. Engineering and non-government organisations are expecting rises of 3.9%. The industry expecting the slimmest rise is information and communications at 3%. Rounding out the list were logistics and transportation 3.8%, manufacturing, retail and trading all at 3.3% and others at 3.4%.
Conducted by the Hong Kong People Management Association (HKPMA) in collaboration with the Centre for Human Resources Strategy and Development Centre (CHRSD) for the School of Business at Hong Kong Baptist University, from July to September this year, the annual survey polled 96 companies in 11 sectors and 115,496 employees to gain an insight into human resources management in Hong Kong.
Overall pay increases were projected to decline year-on-year for most staff and be at the lowest in six years. According to the report, operative staff can expect an increase of 3.8% down from 4% last year and 4.7% in 2015. While managerial staff or above are expecting an increase of 3.5% – a percentage point less than 2017 and far below the 4.3% received in 2015.
Felix Yip Wai Kwong, a senior lecturer at Hong Kong Baptist University’s business school, speaking to The Standard blamed the decrease on a lack of economic incentives.
“Since the handover, how many policies were introduced to stimulate the economy?” he asked.
“I didn't see many highlights on this aspect in chief executive Carrie Lam’s policy address. But the economy is the main source of income for Hong Kong.”
Meanwhile, just over a quarter of the companies polled had to retrench people. A total of 246 employees were made redundant in 2017, with the main reason cited as “restructuring”. The manufacturing sector retrenched the largest number of employees, with a total of 85 employees retrenched and accounting for 34.6% of the total retrenched population; it was followed by the construction sector, with 84 employees retrenched, or 34.1% of the total retrenched population.
The overall average turnover rate ranged from 8.8% to 46.5% for the survey period. The higher the employee level, the lower the turnover rate.
“Career/promotion prospect” and pay were ranked as the top two reasons for employee turnover.
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