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2015 Wage & Benefit Survey - Key to Keeping Great Employees

Posted Wednesday, June 10, 2015 by Jules VanSant.

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The “Wall Street Journal” recently published an article on trends in national wages and the reasons why wages were not growing as fast as economists expected. Based on unemployment rates, the 2.6% increase for the first quarter 2015 was considered low. This is interesting information, but how does it help a manager/supervisor know what a “fair” wage might be for a six-color press operator? In Seattle? Anchorage? Boston?

The Wage & Benefit Survey produced by PPI may not provide macro economic predictions, but it provides information based on industry peers sharing information. The publication furnishes key figures about wages, policies, and benefits for our industry. Based on thousands of data points from hundreds of companies across the United States, as well as providing information by regions of the country and size of company, this information is much more valuable than economic reports from the Department of Labor. In case you are not familiar with this survey, or have not participated in the past several years, here’s an example of the data published in 2014 for a six-color 40” press operator (one of over 100 job classifications in the survey):

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Along with press operators, the survey covers nearly every position in a company from executives to delivery personnel. With a transforming workforce, having this type of data is invaluable in decision making. For more information about this significant source of information and how to participate and receive a copy of the survey results, contact {Name}.

① This represents the number of companies participating in that region, while

② represents the number of wages being reported.

③ The mathematical average of the datapoints.

④ The lowest reported wage reported within the classification.

⑤ This number represents the “ceiling” for the wages which represent the lowest 25% of the wages reported.

⑥ The value here is the mid-point. ½ of the reported wages are lower and ½ are higher.

⑦ 75% of the reported wages are lower than this number

⑧ 90% of the reported wages are lower, or differently stated, only 10% of the reported wages are higher than this value.

⑨ The highest wage reported in this classification. Sometimes this can be an outlier, but if the mid-point and average are very close, the less the possibility that the highest reported wage is an outlier.