Benefits and pay equality more common in the public sector

Almost two-thirds (63%) of respondents in the public sector provide employees with equal benefits, compared with 40% of respondents in the private sector, according to research by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD).

Its Labour market outlook for summer 2013, which surveyed 1,034 private and public sector employers, found that just 7% of respondents do not offer any benefits to staff other than pay.

In the private sector, 28% of respondents offer a more generous benefits package to senior managers, compared with 17% in the public sector.

In terms of how pay increases are differentiated across employees, 44% of respondents said that all employees received the same percentage basic pay and total pay increase.

For increases in total pay, respondents in the voluntary and not-for-profit sector (72%) and the public sector (59%) were more likely to report that all employees received the same percentage increase.

Within the private sector, 38% of respondents reported equality in total pay increases. Similarly, equality in basic pay increases was more likely to be the case in the public sector (49%) than the private sector (40%), and it applied for the majority of respondents in the voluntary and not-for-profit sector (68%).

The research also found:

  • Among respondents predicting a pay rise in the next 12 months, the average forecast has risen to 2.5%, from 2.2% in the previous quarter.
  • The average pay increase in the private sector, excluding respondents that are planning a pay freeze or a pay cut, is 3.2%.
  • A greater proportion of public sector respondents now expect future pay levels to increase, up to 59% from 26% a year ago.
  • There has also been a reduction in the proportion of public sector respondents that expect a pay freeze, down from 22% to 16%.
  • 57% of private sector respondents were unable to say how their average pay will change because it is hard to tell, it will depend on performance, or they do not know.
  • The proportion of private sector respondents that expect pay to increase has fallen to 33% from 39% in the previous quarter.