US expected to lead Asia in rate of wage increase over the year: Global Wage Report 2022

Year-over-year salary increase rates, United States and Asia

Nikkei Research’s “Global Local Salary Report” showed that there is a clear difference between the situation in the United States and that in Asian countries.

TOKYO, JAPAN, April 27, 2022 / — Nikkei Research Inc. has released the 2022 edition of its “Global Local Salary Report”. The report is based on data from Nikkei Research’s annual survey of salaries and benefits for local staff in Japanese companies. The report is organized by country and region, covering the United States and Asia (China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, Philippines and Vietnam).

The results of the latest edition showed that there was a clear difference between the situation in the United States and that of Asian countries. The average rate of year-over-year wage increases had returned to pre-COVID levels in the United States. However, Asia has yet to experience such a recovery and the rate of wage increases is expected to remain low. With the US rebounding and wages expected to rise further, they will likely overtake Asia in terms of this metric in 2022.

Here are some other conclusions about the conditions in the United States

■ Median annual total cash compensation was approximately $43,000 to $66,000 for a non-executive employee. These figures remained unchanged or decreased for certain job titles compared to the previous year. On the other hand, those occupying positions at the “VP/GM” level have experienced significant growth. For this cohort, earnings had increased by more than $60,000 from the previous year to about $183,000 as the median figure.

■The issue that worries labor management the most is that it is “difficult to hire the necessary employees”, as attested by 68.6% of respondents. Next come those who agree with the statement that it is “difficult to motivate local employees” (39.8%). The percentage who agree that it is “difficult to keep great employees” increased by more than 10 points to 33.1%.

■Regarding the impact of COVID-19, respondents were asked if certain conditions had “increased”, “not changed” or “decreased”. 31.7% responded that “communication between staff members” had “decreased”, compared to the situation before the pandemic. Meanwhile, 26.2% said “the number of local staff” had “decreased”. Correspondingly, 23.8% of respondents responded that “the mission and roles that Japanese staff members are expected to fulfill” had “increased”.

The survey covered a wide range of items, from wages and salary increases to bonuses and benefits. All data was collected from local branches of Japanese companies operating overseas. The report also included breakdowns of survey items by job category, area, industry and form of local entity.

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