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June 02, 2011
SHRM LINE Report Shows New-Hire Compensation Increased in May

The SHRM LINE Report shows that new-hire compensation increased in May, and HR professionals found it more difficult to find qualified candidates for open jobs, by a net of 8.6 points for the manufacturing-sector and a net of 13.1 points for the service-sector.

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The Society for Human Resource Management’s (SHRM) Leading Indicators of National Employment® (LINE®) Report, the only national employment index of HR professionals’ month-ahead hiring expectations, shows that despite slowing job growth, new-hire compensation inched up in May, as did the difficulty in finding qualified job candidates.

The report shows that the manufacturing hiring index will increase by a net of 2.1 points compared with a year ago, while the service sector will drop by a net of 14.4 points.

"Though companies are still adding jobs, the rate of improvement compared to the same time last year has leveled off in the past few months,” said Jennifer Schramm, manager of workplace trends and forecasting at SHRM. “While year-over-year comparisons are still showing a positive increase from June 2010 in manufacturing, we haven’t seen the same in services.”

Over half of manufacturers (54.2 percent) plan to hire in June, while 7.2 percent intend to cut jobs. Hiring is up slightly compared to 1 year ago, when 51 percent of organizations planned to hire and 6.1 percent planned to cut jobs in June.

Service-sector hiring will drop moderately compared to one year ago, with 45.2 percent of employers intending to hire and 8.8 percent cutting jobs. One year ago, 57.7 percent of service-sector organizations planned to hire, while 6.9 percent planned to cut jobs.

Released the first Thursday of each month, the LINE Report provides a snapshot of anticipated hiring for the month ahead and also examines data from the previous month.

The SHRM LINE Report shows that new-hire compensation increased in May, and HR professionals found it more difficult to find qualified candidates for open jobs, by a net of 8.6 points for the manufacturing-sector and a net of 13.1 points for the service-sector.

“The percentage of HR professionals in both manufacturing and services reporting increased recruiting difficulty for key vacancies continues to rise,” said Schramm. “More difficulty filling vacant positions is probably why new-hire compensation is also on the rise. May was the eighth consecutive month of year-over-year increases in the percentage of HR professionals in both sectors reporting an increase in new-hire compensation.”

The net total of service-sector companies that increased new-hire wages and benefits was 8.2 percent, an improvement of 6.3 points over last year when 1.9 percent of companies reported an increase in new-hire compensation packages. A net of 8.3 percent of manufacturing sector companies increased new-hire compensation packages in May, an increase of 4.6 points from a net of 3.7 percent 1 year ago.

The LINE Employment Report examines four key areas: employers’ hiring expectations, new-hire compensation, difficulty in recruiting top-level talent and job vacancies. The LINE Report is based on a monthly survey of human resource professionals at more than 500 manufacturing and 500 private service-sector companies. Together, these two sectors make up more than 90 percent of America’s private-sector employment.

To read the SHRM LINE Report, go to the SHRM website and click the “Latest LINE Report” button. Follow SHRM Research on Twitter @SHRM_Research.

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