Inflation! Should You Be Expecting a Raise This Year? Spoiler Alert: No (Unless You are Very Special)
- On May 7, 2023
WSJ reports a disconnect on worker versus employer expectations on raises this year. A majority of workers expect a bump because of inflation and rising cost of living, while employers struggle to contain costs.
What do I foresee for lawyers? They have already received big raises and bonuses (including off-cycle ones) 2021 and 2022 as “employers were scrambling to address labor shortages and keep talent.”
Alas, times have changed. SFGate reports comp at the big tech companies in the Bay Area have in fact gone down due to stock decline and cutbacks: “In the Bay Area’s dominant industry, middle-of-the-payscale employees saw their compensation shrink last year — forced down by stock price plunges and company cutbacks. Some companies bucked the trend, but financial reports show lower ‘median employee pay’ at several major tech firms. San Francisco-based Intel, Yelp, Uber and Lyft each saw median employee pay shrink in 2022, compared with 2021. Santa Monica-based Snap, Austin-based Oracle, Google owner Alphabet and Elon Musk’s Tesla also paid their median employee less, but the Bay Area’s Airbnb, Adobe, Salesforce and Meta bumped up pay. (That said, the latter two were subject to some of the most intense layoffs in the past year.)”
I agree with WSJ: “Companies, particularly in tech and other industries going through downturns, have been scaling back on merit and off-cycle raises in recent months.” And, as one expert on compensation structures, says: “Unless you have rare skills that are in demand, you are unlikely to get a special increase.”