Lower salary growth in the private sector in 2013, yet growth above inflation rate

Salary growth in the private sector averaged 4.6% in 2013, according to this year’s edition of the PayWell salary and benefits study undertook by the Human Resources consulting team of PwC Romania

This is a lower growth rate that in 2012 (5.1%), but it marks the return to real growth figures, taking into consideration the lower inflation forecast for this year (around 3%). 


The tapering of the nominal salary growth is seen across all economic sectors analysed by the PayWell study (with exception of IT&C), but the sectors that reported a real average growth rate (higher than inflation) are that of auto manufacturing, industrial products, FMCG, distribution, IT&C, and pharmaceuticals, while banks and retailers have registered salary growth lower than inflation.


The highest salary growth levels were registered for managers (4.9%), followed by support staff (4.7%) and operational and sales staff (4.5%).


“In the past few years, the effective salary growth rates were significantly lower than those planned the year before and, for next year the trend continues: only 28% of the companies that took part in our PayWell study had already decided upon a salary growth policy, with the average salary planned at the lowest level from the last 5 years: only 5.2%. This reflects not only that inflation expectation is now firmly anchored at lower levels, but also that employers are maintaining a cautious attitude, being very careful at the overall economic growth and not willing to increase salary costs above the productivity gains”, stated Horatiu Cocheci, Senior Manager, Human Resources Team Leader, PwC Romania.


As to the variable component of salaries, more than half of the participating companies are granting performance bonuses. 52% of the companies offer this kind of bonuses to managers, while one third of the participants offer such bonuses to operational and sales staff.


The average paid performance bonus level was lower than the planned one and varies across industries from half of the monthly salary to four monthly salaries.


The number of companies that offer fixed bonuses is also lower than in the previous editions; according to the PayWell 2013 edition, only 28% of the participants grant fixed bonuses to all types of employees. This type of bonuses is usually granted in the industrial sectors that have such clauses in the collective labour agreements. Fixed bonuses can be either predetermined amounts, with their value varying from 200 to 1500 RON, or as percentage of the salary, with an average value of the equivalent of a monthly salary.


As to the benefits granted to employees on the Romanian market, there was an increase in the number of companies that offer lifestyle benefits (such as sports activities subscriptions), while for the other types of benefits (social, protection benefits, etc) the same trend as in the previous years is kept.


According to the PayWell Romania 2013, the structure of the overall compensation package change, with a growth of the variable component (performance bonuses and sales commissions), while in the same time, fixed salaries decreased as a percentage in the overall compensation package and benefits are at similar levels to last year. 


Salary growth in different economic sectors


About PayWell 2013

PayWell Romania 2013 salary and benefits survey comprises compensation data provided by 156 companies across 9 industry sectors (automotive manufacturing, banking, FMCG and distribution industry, IT&C, leasing, pharmaceuticals, retail, outsourcing and service centres). A number of customised analyses and reports, based on the geographical location, headcount and revenue of the participating companies can also be derived from PayWell study. The qualitative part of the report comprises information on specific compensation policies (e.g. salary increases, fixed and variable bonuses) and analysis of more than twenty benefits available on the market, from company car to meal tickets. The depth and spread of the report, its tenure and the number of organisations involved make PayWell the number one thought leadership tool available on remuneration in Romania.