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22 Mar 2023
by Gemma Carroll

Robert Drewell of Innecto on what current pay trends mean for business

Keeping employees engaged during a time of high inflation is tricky, particularly where pay is involved.

Robert Drewell of Innecto on what current pay trends mean for business.jpg


During REBA’s Pay in a high inflation economy webinar, run with strategic partner Personal Group/Innecto, Robert Drewell, client director at Innecto Reward Consulting, gave some insights into its recently released a peer-reviewed survey on pay trends.

Under pressure

“The cost of living crisis and high inflation are putting pressure on pay and causing challenges for organisations,” Drewell said. “It’s about building resilience to change, being able to understand your pay position as a business.”

He added that more organisations were trying to make the ‘right’ choices about how to deliver a pay solution in the current climate. “Some of our clients and organisations are doing sensible reviews of their pay position, conducting some thorough benchmarking to try to gain insight into what other companies are doing and understand what practices they might be following.”

This is likely to be followed by a review of the pay framework to see if it met the needs of the workforce and addressed the risks and concerns raised by the market.

Resilience 101

Something else raised in the webinar was the present extreme challenge of retention and attraction. “We’re seeing the need for companies to be very clear around their pay philosophy and how they engage with the market,” said Drewell.

“It’s about that resilience around pay, which means that you fully understand what your proposition is, how far you can go, what your reference point in the market is and how competitive you can be for the available talent.”

He suggested creating a framework that allows businesses to not only manage the in-house position, but also attract skills and capabilities from the market, and to make sure that it’s affordable.

Made-to-measure rewards

With high-inflation pay increases in demand, which many organisations are not in a position to deliver, employers should look at what add-ons they can offer.

“What else can we do to make it feel like we’re doing as much as we can?” asked Drewell. “Organisations and clients are listening and certainly wanting to engage and consider existing arrangements. We should look at how we manage our staff reward and recognise them in the right way.

“It might be that bonuses don’t happen and all the funds that were allocated to bonuses are reallocated to sustainable increases or fixes. We need to make sure that we are resilient to the market.”

He said clients were homing in on what their budget is and what their demographic looks like. With a diverse workforce, they need to understand their own data to deliver the best return and best solution. There isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach.

“There’s no magic wand that delivers the outcome that everyone wants,” Drewell said. “It’s about making choices and taking the time to understand the impact of a number of factors, rather than just following what everyone else is doing.”


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