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What salaries are your rivals offering?

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Company culture is important. Workplace perks count. Holiday entitlement is a plus point. Every candidate has different reasons for choosing their next career move. And while increasingly candidates have their sights on fixed on better work-life balance, when it comes to the main reasons for people accepting a new job offer one factor reigns supreme: salary.

Recent research backs this up. When employed candidates were asked what they looked for in a new job in a 2015 survey, 76% gave the number one factor as good pay or compensation.

Salary talks

Why is this crucial to know? First of all, 2016 is set to be a bumper year for candidates seeking vacancies, with 83% of employers planning to increase their headcount.

If your business is recruiting obviously you should make your offering as attractive as possible to potential candidates - and that includes being able to offer competitive rates of pay.

Even more so, if you operate in a market currently suffering from candidate shortages like construction, manufacturing and maintenance, you simply won’t be able to attract the right employees without being able to offer a good salary.

From an employee point of view, it’s worth bearing in mind too that overall hopes of a pay rise are looking strong. The website Glassdoor ran an ‘Employment Confidence’ survey in March, with 41% of respondents saying they expected a rise in salary in the next 12 months. Even more important, then, to not be out of step with the best candidates.

What are average wages?

Beyond guesswork and gauging what you’re looking to pay against any competitors in your immediate field, it can be a struggle to get an accurate picture about average wages in your sector. But clear information will make it easier to target the people you’re looking to recruit.

If your business operates in the fields of construction, catering, hospitality, driving, office, professional or industrial, there’s useful information in the HR GO Recruitment 2016 Salary Guide. This guide contains salary estimates for permanent and temporary staff in these sectors, categorised by different UK regions where our branches operate.

At HR GO we speak to thousands of jobseekers and employers on a daily basis, so compiled UK salary and market information from clients and our recruitment consultants between January and December 2015. We then matched our findings against data from Broadbean, which is multiposting software for recruiters that attracts 10 million job ads per month globally.

What to offer instead

It’s great to know what classes as competitive pay in your sector, but your business might not be able to match what’s elsewhere. If bumping up the pay just isn’t an option, think about offering something else instead.

Perhaps remote working and flexible hours, more time off, gym membership or extra travel allowances might swing it. Or you could put together a step-by-step training and development plan to make it crystal clear to potential recruits that you take career progression - and with that, increased salary - seriously.

Talking to the experts

Of course, offering the right salary can often just be one vital part of the recruitment jigsaw.

Every day at HR GO we show clients powerful tweaks they can make to job descriptions or job adverts to attract their dream candidates. So if you need to make a vacancy stand out, it might help to get some perspective with a chat with a recruitment consultant. Your future workforce may thank you for it...

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