2021-2022 Salary Survey: candidate motivators and salary expectations

woman working with child

​The talent market in Australia and globally is under huge strain due to the restriction of movement over past 2 years. That’s why we’re seeing local talent pools in high demand and low supply, leading to steep salary increases during new hire negotiations.

But is offering unsustainably high salaries the best business strategy?

Likely not.

We’ve just launched our 2021-2022 Salary Survey to gauge the market. This is what we’re seeing, and what you, as employers, can expect over the next 12 months.

Australian salary expectations

We’re going to see a continued increase in salaries while movement remains sluggish, and the shortage of talent persists. In technology and transformation especially, there’s already been a 20-30% increase in salaries and contract day rates as more employers latch onto this as a ‘quick fix’ to fill roles.

But salary shouldn’t ever be the only sweetener in your honeypot.

There may be a need to balance high salaries to keep up with the market and attract skilled people, however, be mindful of its negative effect on existing employees. When high performers notice new roles open in the same team with higher salaries attached, it can lead to culture fragmentation.

Download the 2021-2022 Salary Survey here


The Great Resignation

According to recent research by Microsoft, more than 40 per cent of the global workforce are considering leaving their employers this year. Which is great news if you have an unbeatable people-pleasing offer that will snatch them, but not so good if your offer isn’t strong and well thought out, as you may be the place those people are intent on leaving!

Job seekers know they hold the balance of power. They can confidently go to market demanding a pay hike. But salary is only one piece of the pie – we’re also seeing candidates use their bargaining power to negotiate more favourable working conditions to meet their personal goals and needs.

This is why employers must focus on retention as much as they do growth to ensure they can keep their team together. You don’t want to effectively trade a new, unknown performer for an engaged high performer now looking elsewhere to feel appreciated.

Create an offer your people truly want, and you’ll attract and retain

Rising salaries aren’t sustainable nor are they fair for those high performing employees who want to stay with you.

Job seekers may hold all the bargaining power, but more money alone isn’t necessarily the best incentive for long-term retention. You want to offer a package that benefits the whole employee, not just their wallet.

That’s where candidate motivators come in to rescue you *and* place you at the top of the ‘aspirational employer of choice’ pile.

According to our 2021 Candidate Motivators Report, 78% of people believe non-monetary benefits are just as important as salary when considering a new role.

candidate motivators

(The main reasons people are moving, based on our 2021 Candidate Motivators Report)


So, instead of throwing all your money on attracting new talents while risking the loss of current employees, why not also consider how you can split the diff and create a highly coveted employee wellbeing and benefits offer that both new hires and current employees respond to.

Need help finding your competitive edge?

It’s our job as recruiters to be expert negotiators in candidate short markets. While salary and compensation play a huge role in attraction, we can help you uncover the human factors and benefits you offer that ensure you remain competitive beyond salary.

Drop me a line if you would like to discuss over a coffee - henry@talenza.com.au