Salary update - March 2012


UK salary levels stalled by knock-on effects of recession

With a marginal decrease (-0.14% against February) in the average advertised salary rates for general staffing roles, March wasn’t as rosy as many had hoped. Customer service roles suffered most notably, with average salaries decreasing by 7.1% on this time last year, falling to just £16,905 — one of the lowest average salaries in general staffing.

Average UK advertised salaries for perm and temp staff

With lingering levels of high unemployment, demand for roles has been fierce; giving employers the freedom to reduce salaries, safe in the knowledge that a candidate-saturated market lowers jobseeker expectation. Continued economic uncertainty also means that businesses are striving to keep costs down wherever possible.

Despite this, some roles showed an improvement in salary levels compared to this time last year. PA and Office Managers faired especially well, with average advertised salaries increasing by 4.7% and 3.9% respectively; reflecting the additional responsibilities and increasingly wide skill sets now associated with these business-critical roles.

Salaries for PA and Customer Service roles by region

Steven Kirkpatrick, Managing Director at Office Angels, commented: “These figures show that there is still uncertainty in the jobs market, and that we are not quite over the brow of the hill yet. With unemployment figures remaining high, especially amongst young people, combined with strong competition for roles and a lack of spare cash within businesses, raising salaries is not a priority for a lot of companies. Nevertheless, talented jobseekers can still be hard to find, and for the best candidates in the market — those who can demonstrate the right skills and experience — salaries will continue to remain competitive.”