Canadian Wage Hikes Predicted at 3.8% for 2008

September 6, 2007 ( - Average base salary hikes in Canada are expected to be about the same 3.8% in 2008 as they were in 2007, according to Hewitt Associates.

The consultant’s annual “Canada Salary Increase Survey” found that salary increases in Canada are about on the same track as those for U.S. workers and that no Canadian companies anticipate freezing salaries in 2008.

Individual performance awards are becoming more popular in Canada. Awards based on corporate performance were still the most common type of performance-based reward (62%), but individual performance awards were more common this year (51%) than last year (35%).

Special compensation arrangements for those with “hot skills” seem to be loosing luster, however, with 34% of companies offering them in 2007, compared to 39% in 2006 and 45% in 2005.

Flexible work arrangements are taking the place of special compensation arrangements for “hot skill” jobs, the Hewitt survey suggests. These arrangements are currently offered by 81% of organizations, up from 75% in 2004, and include flexible hours, working from home all or part of the time, and compressed work weeks.

In terms of salary adjustments by industry, increases are highest in the oil and gas industry, where they averaged 6.3% for all positions in 2007 and are expected to be around 5.5% next year.

Salary increases are projected to exceed the national average in 2008 include government jobs (5.2%), construction/engineering (4.7 %) and aerospace (4%). Industries with lower expectations for salary increases in 2008 include automotive (3.4%), hospitality/restaurants (3.2 %), printing (3%), and forest and paper products/packaging (2.8%).

For the full survey result visit .