As reported in last week’s iBrief Blog, the lodging industry experienced across the board wage increases for both hourly and salaried employees this year. Overall, wage and salary increases were reported as 2.6% for 2012, which was almost double last year’s increase of 1.4%, as reported by WageWatch in its PeerMark™ Wage Survey of over 5,000 hotels nationwide. Last week, the iBrief Blog focused on hourly increases. This week in the Blog, we will review wage increases for salaried employees.
Managers in key front of the house and back of the house positions received salary increases in excess of the average wage increase of 2.6% reported in last week’s iBrief Blog. The largest salary increase went to Chief Engineers, who on average received a 17.6% pay increase in 2012. This trend is a continuation of what WageWatch reported last week where maintenance technicians I and II received on average 5.5% hourly wage increases. Pay for experienced technical positions continue to lead the way.
Other key management positions receiving above average salary increases in 2012 include front desk managers at 3.7%, marketing and sales directors with 3.9% average increases and food and beverage directors with a 4.3% average salary increase.
As reported last week, there was little difference in the wage increase for full service hotels and focused service hotels. However, the results of the Wagewatch compensation survey for salaried employees do show some differences between full service and focused service hotel employees. The most notable difference was the salary increases for general managers. Overall, general managers received a 1.9% increase in average base salaries; however, focused service general managers on average received only a 1.5% increase while their counterparts at full service hotels received on average a 3.5% increase. The number of full service and focused service hotels surveyed in 2011 versus 2012 was not statistically significant.
Another key trend we are beginning to see emerge in the lodging industry is the hiring of more college graduates to the fill the ranks assistant managers and the management training programs. Our ongoing discussions with hotel management companies as well as with the AH&LA discloses a need for filling entry level management positions that were reduced during the severe national recession of 2008-2009.
This is a trend worth watching. If the economy continues to improve next year and rate and occupancy levels continue to climb to the degree they have the past two years, we will begin to see increased interest on the part hotel management and ownership companies to explore expansion programs. Having a strong bench of middle level managers that can fill the positions at new hotels will be critical to their plans.
WageWatch, Inc. is the leading compensation survey provider for the lodging industry with over 5,000 hotels participating in its PeerMark™ Wage survey. The PeerMark™ Wage Survey is the only Web-based custom survey tool that allows individual survey participants to select their competitive set for comparison purposes.