Senior executives across industries saw double-digit percentage increases in compensation when they changed jobs last year, according to an analysis of compensation data from Salveson Stetson Group, an executive search firm.
This increase continues a now seven-year trend.
“In an environment approaching full employment, it’d be surprising if we didn’t see this upward pressure on executive compensation,” Donna DeHart, vice president at Salveson Stetson Group and a member of the firm’s human resources practice, said.
In 2016, the average compensation increase for senior-level executives, including base salary and bonuses, grew to 20.1 percent, compared to 2015’s 18.44 percent. The firm thinks that this figure reflects the tightening U.S. labor market. Based on a 2.3 percent increase in compensation costs reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the firm also believes that this trend toward increased compensation is reflected throughout the labor market.
"We are seeing the same type of free-for-all for talent that we experienced in the years prior to the Great Recession,” John Salveson, Salveson Stetson Group co-founder and principal, said. “U.S. corporations must not only pay employees competitively but must offer a work culture and career development opportunities that outweigh better compensation packages offered elsewhere.”