The number of people who earn below the living wage has risen by 14%, from 3.4 million in 2009 to 4.8 million, according to a new report by the Resolution Foundation.
The Low Pay Britain 2013 report, which is based on official statistics and analysis, also revealed that:
- The living wage was calculated at £7.20 outside London and £8.30 in the capital for the period covered by the report (April 2012) the most recent full figures available.
- Since then, the living wage has risen to £7.45 an hour outside London and £8.55 in the capital.
- One in four female employees (2.9 million or 25%) earned less than the living wage in 2012, compared with 15% of male employees (1.9 million).
- Three-quarters of employees aged 20 and under (77%) earned less than the living wage.
- Just 16% in the South East and London were paid below the living wage, compared to almost 23% in Wales and more than 20% in many other parts of Britain.
- Pay below the living wage is most common in the hotels and restaurants sector, where two in three employees (67% are low paid) are in this position.
A spokesperson from the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) said: “According to the CIPD’s latest survey of practitioners, two-thirds of those starting in HR (having less than two years of experience) earn between £20,000 and £35,000 per year, while a quarter is paid £15,000 to £20,000.
“Salaries increase with experience, with half of those past the two-year mark earning between £25,000 and £35,000 per year.
“Amongst those specialising in learning and development, almost 60% earn more than £30,000 per year after two years in the industry.
“For those with more experience, when it comes to HR directors who hold a position on company boards, half earn between £50,000 and £99,000 per year, while almost one in five earn in excess of £100,000 per year.”