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2024 Pay Trends: Key Findings from the ASE Compensation Survey

July 8, 2024

The 2024 ASE Compensation Survey provides a detailed look into salary trends across Michigan, reflecting the dynamic nature of the job market and economic conditions. With data from 411 employers covering 545 positions and over 95,000 incumbents, the survey offers valuable insights into wage growth, economic influences, and compensation practices.

Survey Overview and Methodology

The survey’s extensive reach included 411 Michigan employers, with 51 companies from West Michigan, and introduced 56 new job titles across ten job families. This expansion highlights the evolving job landscape, with new roles in areas such as Communications, Behavioral Health, and Human Resources.

Economic Conditions Influencing Wages

Several economic factors have shaped wage trends in 2024. Despite a reduction from over 12 million job openings in March 2022 to around 8.5 million in March 2024, job availability remains robust. This high number of job openings continues to drive competitive salaries.

Labor market activities, such as strikes and retirement trends, have also impacted wages. The post-pandemic labor market chaos has led to significant wage gains, as shown by data from the Federal Reserve. The Atlanta Fed’s Wage Growth Tracker indicated a 4.7% nominal wage growth, pointing to an overall increase in worker earnings.

Key Survey Findings

The survey revealed several critical insights:

  • Industry-Specific Wage Growth: The most substantial year-over-year wage increases were seen in job families tied to production and manufacturing. These sectors have benefited from economic recovery and increased demand for goods.
  • Minimal Wage Movement in Other Sectors: Some job families experienced little to no wage movement, highlighting the varying impact of economic factors across different industries.
  • Variable Pay Trends: Variable pay, including performance-based incentives, remains a significant component of total compensation. The survey noted widespread use of variable pay, reflecting its importance in employee motivation and retention.
Salary Budgets and Adjustments

In response to inflation, salary budgets have been adjusted. The survey found that companies are allocating reward dollars more strategically, with initiatives such as increasing starting salaries and implementing employee retention programs becoming more common.

Future Wage Trends

Looking forward, the survey suggests a normalization of labor markets. Indicators like declining job vacancies, a lower quits rate, and a reduced ratio of job openings to unemployed workers point towards an easing of labor market tightness. This rebalancing is expected to moderate the rapid wage increases seen in recent years.

Insights Into Specific Job Families
  • Healthcare: One of the highest-paying sectors, healthcare continues to see strong demand for professionals like nurses and doctors, driving competitive salaries.
  • Technology: The tech sector, especially in cities like Ann Arbor and Detroit, has seen significant salary growth due to the increasing demand for tech professionals.
  • Education and Public Services: These sectors have seen modest salary increases, influenced by budget constraints and local government policies.

The 2024 ASE Compensation Survey highlights the dynamic nature of the Michigan job market, with ongoing adjustments in compensation practices. As the labor market stabilizes, employers are likely to see moderated wage growth and improved job matching efficiency. These insights are crucial for business owners and HR professionals to make informed decisions about pay and benefits, ensuring competitiveness in the evolving job market.

View more key findings here.

To request to purchase the 2024 ASE Compensation Survey results, please click here. ASE member participants can access the data at no cost in the ASE Survey Library.

Sources: Federal Reserve, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, ASE 2024 Compensation Survey


By Emily Price, courtesy of SBAM-approved partner, ASE.

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