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REBA Research #5: The ongoing effects of Covid-19 on pay and benefits

Covid-19 has impacted reward and benefits thinking for almost every business. At the time of this survey, the UK had entered its second national lockdown, with disruption to some businesses likely to continue well into 2021.

The ongoing effect of Covid-19 will inevitably have future consequences for reward and benefits thinking.  From the effect of reduced profit on executive bonuses, through to how best to remunerate staff who continue to work from home, reward and benefits directors’ 2021 plans will still be shaped by the aftermath of the crisis – even if widespread vaccination becomes a reality.

Additional factors, such as a renewed focus on responsible business and the need to re-engage workers after a fragmented and uncertain year, will also be high priorities.

But employers’ reward policies must also take into account a wider economic backdrop of unprecedented government borrowing, Brexit shifts in working patterns that will affect the UK and global business for decades to come.

This is REBA’s fifth survey specifically related to Covid-19. The survey covers:

The ongoing impact of the Covid-19 crisis on:

  • Current pay
  • Pay reviews in 2021
  • Regionally weighted salaries
  • Pay performance metrics
  • Employee and executive bonuses
  • Bonus and share option performance metrics
  • Business performance
  • Changes in talent needs
  • Reward and benefits priorities for 2021 and beyond

REBA conducted a snapshot survey between 12 November and 20 November 2020, to gain employers’ insights into pay, bonuses and benefits as they prepare for 2021, in the light of the ongoing effects of Covid-19.

REBA received 132 responses to the survey from its members, including organisations such as HSBC, Costain, Taylor Wessing LLP, Direct Line Group, Coutts, Co-op, Thomson Reuters, IKEA, Rolls-Royce and DHL Supply Chain. 

In total, the businesses that responded to the survey represent more than 700,000 employees from industry sectors including financial services, health and pharmaceuticals, professional services and technology. Over four fifths (86%) of respondents were from the private sector.