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What Hongkongers can expect to be paid in 2018-19

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A survey, published this month, canvassed the current compensation and benefits packages of over 120,700 workers across 99 companies of various industries in Hong Kong and Mainland China. It revealed that the average Hong Kong worker’s wage did not grow as much as last year.

In 2018, the average monthly pay rise spans between 3.9% and 4.3%.

Compared with 2017, the salary surge percentage is less vibrant than last year:
Managers: -0.3%
Officers and specialists: -0.4%
Staff: -0.3%
Grassroots: -0.5%

This year’s average fixed bonus is half a month to about three quarters’ pay. An average incentive is 0.9-1.5 months’ pay. The company’s revenue and individual performance continue to be the criteria for a salary surge.

It is estimated the overall average pay rise of the working landscape next year will be 3.8%, the lowest among six years. Manager-level positions’ salary is expected to increase at around 3.6%, the lowest grossing among all positions, while officers and specialists are expected to be granted a 3.9% rise in pay.

The average monthly wage of a fresh graduate with a bachelor’s degree is HK$14,311 and HK$758 more for new postgraduates, which are 0.67 and 5.26% higher than last year respectively.

The average top-paying starting salary goes to engineering majors at about HK$1,600-HK$2,000 higher than average graduates. In second place, information and technology earns new graduates an average of HK$15,513. Surprisingly, IT fresh postgraduates are paid HK$234 less than IT fresh bachelor graduates.

Viola Wong, vice-president of the Hong Kong People Management Association, expressed that Hong Kong employers will be cautious towards salary and compensation in the wake of the perpetual trade war between China and the US.

Overall, there is a bigger growth in Mainland China. This year, a five to six percentage of pay rises are granted to Mainland China employees. It is estimated next year’s salary surge will be around 5.2 to 5.4%.

The Annual Pay Level Survey for Hong Kong and Mainland China has been conducted since 1995 by the Hong Kong People Management Association (the former Hong Kong Industrial Relations Association) in collaboration with Wing Lung Bank International Institute for Business Development of Hong Kong Baptist University.

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