Why You Need to Rethink Employee Salaries Today


As a manager, you want to hire and retain the most qualified talent. The best place to start is by offering employee salaries in the right range.

Administrative teams keep your organization’s engine running on a daily basis. They switch tasks with the greatest of ease. They are magicians, jugglers and master organizers all rolled into one. In a word, good administrative professionals are indispensable, but they know they have options in today’s job market. Are you paying your stars enough to keep their eyes from roving?

According to the most recent OfficeTeam Salary Guide, administrative salaries are expected to increase an average of 3.8 percent this year. Some positions (certified medical coding managers, senior executive assistants and HR assistants, for example) will see increases of 4 percent or more. Administrative professionals who possess certain skill sets, such as foreign language fluency and Microsoft Office specialist certification, will earn 8 percent to 12 percent more than colleagues lacking these qualifications.


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If you’re an employer, it’s time to get proactive and start benchmarking employee salaries against similar companies in your region and industry. Make sure compensation and perks are in the right range to attract today’s top talent. And if you currently have administrative staff you value highly, make sure retention is a priority by offering them appropriate raises — before they approach you.

Here are some steps you can take to ensure you are in the right range as you re-evaluate your employee salaries.

Educate yourself

Whether you’re interested in hiring full-time employees or prefer a temporary-to-full-time arrangement, you can get a good update on average pay ranges for administrative staff by reading the most recent OfficeTeam Salary Guide, which also provides an overview of hiring trends across North America. Additionally, start perusing job boards and recruitment sites to get an idea of what other companies in your industry are paying for similar positions in your area.

Reach out to experts and peers

Turn to trusted staffing agencies, HR professionals and other hiring managers to help you with your research. Network with industry colleagues to get their input about salaries, raises, how they go about recruiting administrative talent and tips on improving employee retention. If you’re on the same page as them, you’ll stand a better chance of drawing in the cream of the crop.

Think beyond salaries

A healthy paycheck is one way of attracting great talent, but perks are also important to job seekers. Bonuses, incentives and profit-sharing, along with paid vacations, 401(k) matching funds and flexible work schedules are all things administrative job seekers take into account. Other perks, like subsidized meals, onsite daycare and fitness programs are also highly valued. Some companies offer company-paid smartphones or tablets and errand services. The point is that you may need to get creative to stay competitive.

Be flexible

Even after you have a handle on employee salaries, you may have to bend a bit and negotiate with promising hires. This can be particularly true if you are trying to lure an administrative professional from an existing job or if you are looking for workers with specialized job skills that are in high demand.

Don’t forget your existing stars

In the midst of an active hiring cycle, as you’re putting all your energy into attracting new candidates, it’s all too easy to overlook your current dedicated employees. Today’s improved job market may inspire them to go elsewhere, so don’t wait too long before you reward them for their hard work. You can improve employee retention by conducting more frequent reviews (even if they are informal) to ensure your administrative staff are satisfied in their roles and feel appreciated by the firm. Follow these discussions with a review of employee salaries, as necessary, and by promoting training and advancement opportunities.

Having trouble staffing your open position? Learn how OfficeTeam can help you find the administrative talent you seek.