2022 employer survey results

Employer survey: Key findings and statistics

This collection of data across seven areas AGH considers most important to navigating business gives insight into the current economic and hiring climate.

AGH recently conducted an online survey of local business leaders across industries to capture organizational trends and potential effects of the current economic and hiring climates.

Questions were focused on areas AGH considered most important to businesses navigating the current labor environment. Areas surveyed included:

  • Compensation trends
  • Benefits
  • Work flexibility
  • Paid time off (PTO)
  • Retirement plans
  • Mental health
  • Financial communications

Here is what we found.

Sizable and frequent pay increases

Organizations increased pay by significant amounts and more frequently than ever over the last 12-18 months. Across all industries, organizations increased position or individual pay by as much as 20-30%. One organization provided three increases over the last 12 months totaling 12% across all positions; increases were even higher in hard-to-fill positions.

While employers must focus on entry-level pay and pay for hard-to-fill positions to attract talent, equal attention should be given to pay for current employees to mitigate pay compression issues. Pay compression occurs when there is little difference in pay regardless of differences in employees’ knowledge, skills, experience, and abilities. Failing to address pay compression could cause new employees to be paid close to or higher than tenured employees, which can create significant morale issues and employee turnover.

Employees want more Paid Time Off (PTO) and work flexibility

Employers that provide generous PTO policies create an environment that encourages employees to manage personal needs and general well-being, creating a more productive and loyal workforce. Employers can create a competitive advantage by increasing paid time off offered to employees.

  • 43% offer 40-80 hours of PTO or vacation upon hire for hourly employees
  • 43% offer 80-120 hours of PTO or vacation upon hire to salaried employees
  • The median maximum accrual rate for employees is 160 hours annually.
  • 37% offer paid maternity leave.

Providing flexibility in work arrangements, location, or schedules is another way employers can help employees manage personal needs and general well-being. Offering options for remote work can help as well. Coming out of the pandemic, we asked organizations about their remote work plans for the next 6-12 months:

  • 44% said they would offer remote work options some of the time for all employees
  • 9% said they would offer full-time remote work options for all employees

Employers attracting and retaining the best talent consider additional opportunities to give the work-life integration that today’s workforce seeks. The most successful organizations find ways to make work work for their employees. Consider if a hybrid or remote work arrangement can bring the productivity your organization needs while providing the flexibility employees seek.

Attention to mental health is needed

Organizations perceive employees to be experiencing significant or ongoing stress and burnout.

  • 68% believed their employees are experiencing significant or ongoing stress
  • 57% believed their employees are experiencing burnout.

Organizations can encourage mental health wellness by offering mental health benefits beyond the employer health plan, training employees and management to recognize/respond to stress and burnout in the workplace, and providing an employee assistance program (EAP). 60% of respondents currently offered an EAP. Assess your current mental health benefits and determine if they are aligned with the needs of your employees/applicants.

Good communication includes bad news

Employers should communicate more frequently about the organization’s financial position and its response to a potential recession. Survey respondents were asked whether their organization communicated its financial position/health to all employees:

  • 47% – Yes
  • 15% – No
  • 38% – of employees indicated the organization communicates financial health to some but not all employees

By providing transparency, workers may feel more committed to helping their organization navigate challenging times. A lack of or limited communication can create uncertainty and fear in employees’ minds, causing them to seek employment opportunities that they perceive to be more stable.

Learn more

Employers must assess their employee value proposition - what an employee gets in exchange for the work they give. Some critical areas include compensation, PTO, flexibility in work, mental health, and financial communication. Finding a mix of solutions that addresses the trends highlighted above can help an organization better navigate the current labor market challenges.

If you want to see more data or identify gaps between your HR strategy and the labor market, contact Carrie Cox using the information below.

Carrie Cox

Vice President
HR & Org. Development Services

Carrie has experience in a variety of human resource functions, including labor laws, compensation structures, employee classification, benefits administration, performance management and human resource best practices. She has served clients in a number of industries, including manufacturing, construction, banking, government, and not-for-profits. Carrie is a member of the national and local chapters of the Society of Human Resource Professionals (SHRM) and serves on the Wichita chapter board of directors.

She is a certified practitioner for the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® and the Hay Group’s Emotional and Social Competency Inventory. Her additional certifications include Certified Professional Coach from the Academy of Creative Coaching, Professional in Human Resources (PHR) from the Human Resource Certification Institute, and SHRM-CP designated by the SHRM.

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