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There are still calls for greater salary transparency

Nearly half of UK professionals (48%) would welcome greater pay transparency.

New research* the world’s largest CV-writing service, has revealed that nearly half of UK professionals (48%) would welcome greater pay transparency.

When TopCV asked professionals if they would like to know how much their colleagues earn, 50% said they would. More than three-quarters (77%) said they wouldn’t mind being asked by their colleague about pay and 70% said they would openly share how much they earn.

A more open understanding of what co-workers are earning may be linked to negotiating for a higher salary, with 39% of respondents sharing that they had asked for a pay rise in 2023.

Salary was also one of the leading factors in deciding to stay or leave a role. When TopCV asked for the top reasons why workers had left a job in 2023, the responses were as follows:

  • Salary (35%)

  • Flexibility (30%)

  • Toxic boss or work environment (30%)

Working too many hours (23%) and wanting to relocate (15%) were also cited as reasons.

Amanda Augustine, careers expert at TopCV, commented: ‘‘Our findings indicate that employees are no longer shying away from talking about salary in the workplace. And this isn’t exclusive to the UK. New laws emerging, such as the EU Pay Transparency Directive, may drive change in this area and could impact everything from how companies advertise salary details in job descriptions to the questions they ask candidates about salary history during an interview.’’

Augustine continues: ‘‘What’s also clear is that workers are more than willing to leave a role if they don’t believe there are opportunities for pay progression. In fact, for millennials, this was their number-one reason for quitting.

‘‘Before deciding whether to jump ship or stay the course however, it’s important to identify what feelings are driving a desire to quit. Understanding the underlying cause of your feelings will help you sort out if quitting is the right course of action and, if so, help you find the right job sooner during your job search.’’

Augustine suggests asking the following questions to determine whether there’s opportunity to improve your situation at your current place of employment with negotiation, or whether the best approach is to explore your options elsewhere:

  • Have I learned all I can from the role? Are my talents being put to good use? If you’re feeling bored, unchallenged or underutilised, find out if there are opportunities to take on new responsibilities, negotiate a promotion, or even apply for a job in a different department or line of business within the company before deciding whether or not to jump ship.

  • Is there room for growth at the company? If you feel stagnant in your position, there are no professional development opportunities available, and there is no opportunity to stretch and grow your skills and knowledge, it may be time to move on.

  • Am I getting paid what I’m worth? If you’re not satisfied with your current salary, you’re a strong performer, and your research shows that you are being paid under market value, it’s time to negotiate for a better compensation package. However, if you’re unable to negotiate an acceptable rate, it might be time to find a role that properly rewards you for your talents.

  • Is this job putting my health at risk? Sure, everyone has a bad day at work now and again. However, if you dread going to work each morning, count the minutes until you can leave or regularly have nightmares about the office, then take it as a sign to find a new job. Whether it’s a toxic work environment, a tyrannical boss or the extreme amount of stress your job creates, no job is worth risking your health and mental wellbeing.

  • Is the company stable? If the company has performed well this year, they may be more inclined to offer you more money or other perks that would make it worth staying. However, if the company is not faring well and you’ve lost faith in leadership’s ability to turn things around, it may be time to secure work elsewhere.

*research from TopCV,

Between 9 October 2023 and 10 October 2023, TopCV surveyed 350 UK career-driven professionals.

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