Firms offer huge pay hikes to retain skilled workers

Employers are handing out five-figure pay rises to keep young workers as the skills shortage continues to bite, experts have revealed.

City-based financial firms are having to pay young professionals in excess of £20,000 to retain their services because of a shortage of qualified people in the market, according to recruitment company Robert Walters.

And staff ‘buy-backs’ do not only occur in the City, according to chief executive and founder, Robert Walters. “It’s happening everywhere, although the remuneration package is 50% higher in the City than anywhere else,” he told Personnel Today.

“By retaining an existing valued employee, a company can save on replacement costs, recruitment fees and the time lost to the induction and change process.”

Sharon Fraser, Deloitte managing partner for talent, said the market for high-calibre staff had been competitive for some years, with salary just one factor in the battle to retain and recruit.

Walters agreed that money was not the only reason staff left a company, pointing out that 80% of people who were bought back ended up leaving soon after anyway.

He added that the recent stock market scare had been shown to have very little impact on City jobs.

“If we had to cut our posts in half, we would still have too many vacancies for people with financial qualifications,” he said.

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