Time for a Pay “Check”: Is Your Firm Keeping Up With Average Salaries?

Keeping Up With Average Salaries

Things are going great at your company. The team gets along well and productivity is skyrocketing. Then one morning, a key employee gives her two-week notice, citing salary concerns as her reason for leaving. You conclude that she must have lucked out with an unusually high-paying new job. However, when another team member departs a month later for the same reason, you start to wonder: “Could salaries at our firm be out of line with average salaries?”

One way to find out is to take a look at one of the 2014 Salary Guides from Robert Half, and check out our video on the Salary and Hiring Outlook for a quick look at key trends. The Salary Guides provide data on average salaries in the United States and Canada for professionals in the fields of finance and accounting, technology, administrative, legal and creative. The guides include tools for adjusting compensation for different cities, useful case studies, job descriptions and tips on recruiting the best employees.

Here’s a peek at what you can find inside the guides:

Accounting and Finance

The 2014 Salary Guide from Robert Half provides average salaries for positions in specialties such as corporate and public accounting, financial services, business analysis, payroll, tax, and many others. The guide points out that “degreed financial professionals with specialized skills frequently receive multiple offers and counteroffers.” If you are an internal auditor at a midsize U.S. company with 1 to 3 years of experience, for instance, you can expect a 4.2 percent increase in average starting salary in 2014, with a national range of $55,000 to $75,250.


Technology positions are some of the hardest to fill — and pay rates reflect this. Being aware of average salaries is key for hiring managers: A 2014 survey from Dice shows that 68 percent of tech pros who anticipate leaving their current employers cited higher compensation as the reason. The Robert Half Technology 2014 Salary Guide presents average salaries for more than 70 technology positions. One example: The national average starting salary for a mobile app developer is expected to rise 7.8 percent in 2014, to a range of $100,000 to $144,000.

Administrative and Office Support

The OfficeTeam 2014 Salary Guide covers starting salaries for administrative and office professionals. Positions range from executive assistants and receptionists to customer service representatives and office clerks. The guide states that in this field, “Employers faced with increased competition for candidates are reassessing the job offers they extend … raising salaries and offering more attractive perks and benefits.” The guide also shows that administrative salaries are on the rise. An executive assistant can expect a 4.1 percent increase in starting salary in 2014, to a range of $40,500 to $55,250.


You’ll find average salaries for positions such as lawyers, paralegals and legal specialists in the 2014 Salary Guide from Robert Half Legal. Although the guide identifies a “deep applicant pool” for many legal positions and confirms that “salaries have not yet returned to prerecession levels,” the trend in the legal field is modestly upward. Lawyers at midsize U.S. law firms with four to nine years of experience can expect their average starting salaries to increase 4.8 percent over 2013 levels, to a range of $124,750 to $187,500.

Creative and Marketing

The coffee-themed 2014 Salary Guide from The Creative Group lists average starting salaries for more than 130 design and production, interactive, content development, advertising and marketing, and public relations positions. There is robust demand for digital talent, including web and user (UX) experience designers, as well as front-end web developers. The U.S. starting salary for a UX designer currently ranges from $78,000 to $120,000, an increase of 7.5 percent over last year.


Tell us about your experience in keeping pace with average salaries in the comments section below. And don't forget to download all of our 2014 Salary Guides from one location!