Australians told to demand a pay rise NOW


Australians told to demand a pay rise NOW – and there’s one thing you can do if your boss does not agree

  • Hays recruitment survey showed nine in 10 bosses planning to give pay rises
  • Trouble is only 37 per cent were prepared to offer increase of 3 per cent or more
  • That is well below 5.1 per cent inflation rate, now expected to get much worse 

Australian workers are being advised to lobby their boss for a decent pay rise or switch jobs with inflation expected to hit the highest level in 32 years by Christmas.

A Hays recruitment survey of more than 4,400 employers showed nine in 10 bosses were intending to award pay rises this year as the cost of living crisis worsens.

The trouble is only 37 per cent of them will be approving salary increases  of more than 3 per cent.

Inflation in the year to March surged by 5.1 per cent, the highest since 2001. 

The Commonwealth Bank is now predicting inflation will surge to 6.25 per cent by the end of 2022, reaching the highest level since the December quarter of 1990.

Australian workers are being advised to lobby their boss for a decent pay rise or switch jobs with inflation expected to hit the highest level in 32 years by Christmas (pictured is a stock image)

Australian workers are being advised to lobby their boss for a decent pay rise or switch jobs with inflation expected to hit the highest level in 32 years by Christmas (pictured is a stock image)

That means the vast majority of Australia workers would effectively be suffering a pay cut, even if their salaries rose by more than 3 per cent for the first time since 2013. 

Wages are growing by just 2.4 per cent, or less than half the rate of inflation, and the Commonwealth Bank is only expecting pay level growth to hit 3.25 per cent by early 2023.

Half of Australian workers are now looking to switch jobs if their boss fails to give them a decent pay rise.

The Hays survey of 4,425 skilled professionals in Australia and New Zealand showed 49 per cent of respondents were looking for a new job because of an uncompetitive salary, ahead of poor promotional opportunities and bad management or work culture.

Nick Deligiannis, Hays’s managing director in Australia and New Zealand, said bosses needed to ask their staff what was bothering them, following the upheaval of the pandemic.

‘Employees are reconsidering what they want from work,’ he said. 

‘Viewing your employees as your most important customer and adopting competitive salary, benefits and upskilling tactics can help you traverse today’s skills shortage.’

Despite struggling to recruit or keep staff, CommSec senior economist Ryan Felsman said supply chain pressures were eroding revenue, leaving less room for employers to offer decent pay rises.

A Hays recruitment survey showed just 37 per cent of employers were prepared to offer wage rises of more than 3 per cent with the Commonwealth Bank now forecasting inflation of 6.25 per cent - the highest since 1990 (pictured is a Woolworths shopper in Sydney)

A Hays recruitment survey showed just 37 per cent of employers were prepared to offer wage rises of more than 3 per cent with the Commonwealth Bank now forecasting inflation of 6.25 per cent – the highest since 1990 (pictured is a Woolworths shopper in Sydney)

New Commonwealth Bank rate forecasts on the RBA cash rate

JULY: Up 0.5 percentage points to 1.35 per cent

AUGUST: Up 0.25 percentage points to 1.6 per cent

SEPTEMBER: Up 0.25 percentage points to 1.85 per cent

NOVEMBER: Up 0.25 percentage points to 2.1 per cent

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‘Cost pressures, which are eroding profit margins, are restraining private sector businesses,’ he said.

Unemployment in April fell to 3.9 per cent, the lowest level since August 1974.

In May, the number of jobs advertised on the internet by 0.9 or by new 2,754 available positions to a 14-year high of 298,375 spots, National Skills Commission data showed.

The Commonwealth Bank is expecting unemployment to fall even lower to 3.75 per cent this year.

But it also predicted unemployment climbing back to 4.5 per cent as the supply chain crisis, high inflation and a series of interest rate rises slowed Australia’s economic momentum. 

CBA, Australia’s biggest bank, is now expecting the Reserve Bank to raise interest rates by 0.5 percentage points in July, followed by 0.25 percentage point increases in August, September and November that would take the cash rate to 2.1 per cent – up from 0.85 per cent.

‘Our expectation is that Australia’s current economic boom has a little further to run and the labour market will remain tight so we don’t foresee a bust,’ it said.

‘But growth momentum is anticipated to slow materially by late 2022 due to a swift and aggressive RBA tightening cycle.’

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese’s government has written to the Fair Work Commission recommending a 5.1 per cent pay increase, in line with inflation, for Australia’s 2.7 million minimum wage and low-paid award workers.

‘Ensuring that real wages for low-paid workers do not go backwards in these circumstances will protect the relative living standards for these workers, prevent further financial hardship and avoid adverse distributional outcomes and broader economic and social risks,’ its submission said.

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