Recruiters received an average pay rise of 3.6 per cent in the last financial year, the highest for three years, as their hard work in an ever tightening labour market appeared to pay off. Attract and retain top talent – Pay and benefits in the recruitment sector a new report published today by the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) in partnership with Croner found that 40 per cent of consultants and 53 per cent of managers received a pay rise in the past year, including one in seven (15 per cent) who received a pay rise of 10 per cent or more.
The survey of over 300 recruiters found that the top three considerations for recruiters when thinking about a change of job are pay, followed by flexible working opportunities and a commitment to invest in their personal development, all of which carry more weight than a generic ‘benefits package’.
Flexible working is appreciated by both consultants and managers: over half of women (53 per cent) and a third of men (33 per cent) working in recruitment had used at least one method of flexible working in the past year whether that was working part-time, compressed hours or working from home. The proportion of recruiters offered benefits such as training days and childcare assistance appears to have increased since the REC’s last salary survey in 2015, a further sign of a growth in family-friendly working practices and non-financial benefits.
The report also found that the mean gender pay gap identified in the REC’s previous survey still persists. Male consultants earn on average 9 per cent more than women and male managers earn 6 per cent more than their female counterparts. The pay gaps increase to 14 per cent and 10 per cent respectively when bonus and commission are included.
Commenting on the new report which is designed to help industry leaders benchmark their current salary and benefits offering against industry trends REC chief executive Neil Carberry says:
“As with all areas of the labour market at the moment there is increasing competition to secure top talent. The number of members telling us that attracting and retaining staff is a top concern is steadily increasing. This is a great industry to build a career in, but we must always work to ensure that people can see this. When I started as a consultant, it offered me a crash course in business and people management that still benefits me every day.
“Business owners need to think about what they can offer that makes their agency more attractive to in-demand consultants and managers. While people will always be motivated by pay to some extent, we found various other benefits that recruiters value. Providing flexible work, and training and development opportunities are relatively low-cost ways to make your agency the first choice for talented recruiters.
“Evidence of a persistent gender pay gap is a real area of concern. Reviewing pay and bonus policies to ensure they are gender neutral is absolutely vital, as is ensuring men and women have equal opportunity to grow into more senior roles.”