The Projected Standstill in Salary Budget Increases for 2017

The Projected Standstill in Salary Budget Increases for 2017

By Lauren E.B. Belcher at Phillip Blount & Associates

Locked in a standstill, salary budget increase projections for 2017 are remaining at 3.1 percent (average) overall (3.0 percent, median), according to WorldatWork. These projections are identical to the projected salary increases made by WorldatWork for 2016. Actual 2016 budget increases, however, in fact were lower – by approximately 0.1 percent with the average overall increase at 3.0 percent. 2017 is the third consecutive year to have projected salary budget increases at 3.1 percent. WorldatWork attributes this to a slow, steady growth in increases being reported since the recession. Other factors effecting the halt in rising projections include slight increases in “zero-percent increases” being reported.


Though salary increase projections are failing to rise, WorldatWork reports that the effects are being offset through programs and practices that allow employees more work-life balance opportunity. In turn, demand for wage growth is lessened. WorldatWork also indicates that, although significant changes were made during the final Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) ruling in May 2016, plans for salary budget increases were not impacted by the new standards that were put in place. In fact, surprisingly, 95 to 98 percent of WorldatWorks’s survey respondents stated that their organization’s actual 2016 and projected 2017 salary budget increases were not affected by the new FLSA rules.

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