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Advertised salaries accelerate month on month

By Emma Musgrave | |4 minute read

Australia is nearly at a point where advertised salary growth is outpacing the cost of living, new data has found.


According to SEEK’s Advertised Salary Index (ASI), the month of August saw advertised salaries rise 4.8 per cent over a 12-month period – a 4.6 per cent increase in the year to July.

Certain industries are driving the increase, with some jobs reporting much higher advertised salary growth than others.

The community services and development sector has recorded an 8.0 per cent in the year to August 2023. This is believed to have come off the back of the relatively large increase in minimum rates of pay due to a Fair Work Commission decision.

Meanwhile, the trades and services industry experienced 5.5 per cent growth in advertised salaries in the year to August. This, however, is down from a peak of 6.8 per cent in the year to April 2023.

The hospitality and tourism industry has seen continued moderation in growth, with advertised salaries up just 2.6 per cent in the year to August.

SEEK senior economist, Matt Cowgill, says while the results paint an interesting picture, they are unlikely to be a sign of more acceleration to come.

“We’re nearly at a point where advertised salary growth is outpacing the cost of living, with the SEEK ASI up 4.8 per cent in the year to August and inflation up 4.9 per cent in the year to July.

“However, this increase is not common across all industries – most are still seeing moderate growth after the highs of 2022,” Mr Cowgill said.

“The increase in the overall ASI has been driven in large part by the Community Services & Development industry, where minimum wages for certain occupations in aged care have increased by 15 per cent.

“Given that the pick-up is not common across many industries, the acceleration in the ASI is unlikely to continue in future months.”

As reported by HR Leader earlier this month, Robert Half research revealed that 45 per cent of Australian employers have reported an increase in shortlisted candidates negotiating compensation this year, and 40 per cent report the same from existing employees.

“In an era defined by skills shortages, employers are witnessing a growing frequency of compensation negotiations, where the pursuit of talent meets the constraints of a squeezed marketplace,” said Nicole Gorton, director at Robert Half.

“As the demand for top talent continues to outgrow the available supply, organisations are finding themselves reconciling the requirements of their business with those of their employees too. They must entice and retain skilled professionals while navigating the constraints of budgets and company policies. In this environment, compensation negotiations have become a critical tool for both employers and employees.”