With economists forecasting more job growth in 2015, employees¹ are returning to work expecting to get paid more in the new year. In fact, more than one in three (35%) employees report they will look for a new job if they do not receive a pay raise in the next 12 months. This comes as employees feel more confident than they have in the job market in six years, as half (48%) of employees (including those self-employed) report optimism in their ability to find a new job matched to their experience and compensation levels in the next six months.
This is according to Glassdoor’s quarterly Employment Confidence Survey2, which monitors four key indicators of employment confidence: job market optimism, job security, salary expectations and company outlook. In addition, this quarter’s survey reveals employee expectations around pay raises in the new year and the impact it will have on new job searches, as well as employee sentiment on pay inequalities between men and women.
Employee Expectations Around Pay Raises in 2015
With half of employees reporting they’re confident in their ability to find a new job in the next 12 months, and 35% reporting they will look for a new job if they don’t receive a pay raise, the 2015 job market may see some movement. More than two in five (43%) employees expect a pay raise in the next 12 months. Of those employees who expect a pay raise in the new year, half (49%) expect a 3-5% pay raise. This differs slightly by gender with 52% of men expecting 3-5%, compared to fewer women expecting this amount (45%). Only 4% of employees expect their next pay raise to be 50-100%.
Most Employees Do Not Believe Men & Women are Paid Equally
It appears both employers and employees may have work to do in 2015 to address pay inequality or wage gaps between men and women as three in five employees (62%) do not believe men and women are paid equally. This differs significantly by gender as 75% of women do not believe men and women are paid equally, compared to just half (50%) of men.
“The job market is making a strong recovery and with that comes the reckoning of pay inequities and an increased awareness of salary transparency. Employees are making it known that they expect to get paid more in 2015. In fact, if they don’t, they will jump ship and find a new opportunity. Therefore, it’s time for employers to dust off the playbook from the economic growth years and pay attention to compensation practices that retain talent,” said Rusty Rueff, Glassdoor career and workplace expert. “It’s also time for employers to recognize and address the fact that most employees still do not believe men and women are paid equally. Overall, it is a time of reckoning; one in which employers should use the start of the new year as an opportunity to reevaluate internal pay structure, fix pay inequalities that exist, and be transparent with employees about how compensation and pay raises are determined. Employers that do this well will reap positive recruiting and retention rewards, and those that don’t will put themselves at higher talent retention risks.”
Job Market Confidence at a New High
As 2015 gets underway, employees are feeling more confident in the job market than they have in six years. Half (48%) of employees (including those self-employed) report confidence that they can find a new job matched to their current experience and compensation levels in the next six months, up 1 percentage point since last quarter. Confidence to find a new job is also on the rise among those unemployed but looking for work (43%), an increase of 10 percentage points since last quarter (33%) and a new high since this survey question was first asked in Q1 2009.One in four employees (26%) are uncertain in their ability to find a job, and another one in four (26%) think it is unlikely they could find a job. Younger employees (18-34 years old) are significantly more confident in their ability to find a job in the next six months (60%), when compared to employees within other age groups: 43% for 35-44 years old, 43% for 45-54 years old, 33% for 55-64 years old, 46% for 65+ years old.
Layoff Concerns at a New Low
As more employees report optimism to find a new job, this quarter’s survey also shows that fewer employees report fear when it comes to the possibility of being laid off. During Q4 2014, 13 percent of employees said they were fearful of losing their job in the next six months, down 2 percentage points since last quarter and a new six year low (since Q4 2008). More men (15%) than women (10%) are concerned about being laid off in the next six months. In addition, more than one in five (23%) employees are concerned about co-workers being laid off, up 1 percentage point since last quarter.
Check out more from our Q4 2014 Glassdoor Employment Confidence Survey, including our survey supplement, which provides a detailed quarter-by-quarter breakdown of results.
1 For the purposes of this study, “employees” were defined as U.S. adults 18+ employed full time and/or part time unless otherwise indicated.
2 The Q4 2014 survey was conducted online within the United States by Harris Poll on behalf of Glassdoor from December 12-16, 2014 among 2,030 adults ages 18 and older, among whom 871 are employed full time/part time. This online survey is not based on a probability sample and therefore no estimate of theoretical sampling error can be calculated. For complete survey methodology, including weighting variables, please contact email@example.com.