Salaries are a secretive and sensitive subject for UK employees

British workers are shy about revealing their salaries to their families, and a small proportion would rather leave their jobs than ask for a pay rise, a survey has found.

The research conducted by HR services provider Ceridian found that 53% of respondents would never share their salary details with their families, while one in six would never ask for a salary increase. One in 33 would rather leave than ask for more money.

Older respondents are more prepared to ask for a pay increase. Just 19% of under-34s felt comfortable asking for a pay rise, while 81% of over-35s were fine with the idea. Attitudes also depended on gender – of the 8% of respondents who claimed they would negotiate hard for a salary increase, three-quarters were men.

The survey of more than 1,000 full-time employees also suggested the UK is a nosey nation, with 46% expressing an interest in what colleagues earned. However, 73% wouldn’t tolerate having their salary details disclosed to their colleagues.

Karan Paige, chief people officer at Ceridian UK, said: “Our research demonstrates that pay is an important personal issue and one that employers need to think carefully about.”

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