Canadian firms raise wages 3.3 per cent

Nearly one-quarter of organizations plan to add more staff in 2003: survey
||Last Updated: 06/23/2003

Canadian organizations increased wages by an average of 3.3 per cent this year, according to a new survey.

Mercer Human Resource Consulting’s

Compensation Planning Survey Update 2003

shows 4.9 per cent of firms imposed a wage freeze, down significantly from the more than seven per cent that did so in 2002.

“In spite of the threat of war and the impact it is having on the economy, Canadian employers continue to be cautiously optimistic in terms of pay increases for 2003,” said Merrilyn Earl, manager of operations of Mercer’s global information services. “On a more positive note, fewer employers are planning to decrease their workforce than was the case last year.”

Earl said the survey results from January show more organizations expect to add staff in 2003. Slightly more than nine per cent said they plan to decrease their workforces in the first half of 2003, down from the 20 per cent that said so in late 2002.

Similarly, the January update shows 23 per cent of organizations plan to add staff, up from 17 per cent in late 2002.

Actual salary increases by industry

•Oil, gas and petrochemical: 3.9 per cent

•Pharmaceutical and biotechnology: 3.8 per cent

•Computer software: 3.7 per cent

•Utilities: 3.6 per cent

•Wholesale and distribution: 3.4 per cent

•Insurance: 3.4 per cent

•Manufacturing (durable): 3.4 per cent

•Retail: 3.4 per cent

•Consumer products: 3.3 per cent

•Professional and information services: 3.2 per cent

•Real estate and construction: 3.2 per cent

•Public sector: 3.2 per cent

•Not-for-profit: 3.2 per cent

•Services (for profit): 3.1 per cent

•Manufacturing (non-durable): 3.1 per cent

•Finance and banking: 3.0 per cent

•Hospitality and tourism: 2.9 per cent

•Transportation: 2.9 per cent

•Natural resources: 2.8 per cent

•Telecommunications: 2.8 per cent

•Computer hardware and high-tech: 2.7 per cent

The survey represents data collected in January 2003 from 314 organizations across Canada, employing over 500,000 non-union employees and a total of more than one million union and non-union workers.

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