Report: Skills shortages drive marketing salaries up

Latest Hays report shows more than 8 in 10 employers will be increasing marketing professional salaries off the back of the skills shortage

Marketing professional pay cheques are on the rise, with more than eight in 10 employers expecting to increase salaries in their next review.  

That’s one of the key findings of Hays’ new FY22-23 Marketing and Digital Salary Guide, released this week. The recruitment firm found 83 per cent of marketing employers will increase salaries in the next review, up from 58 per cent year-on-year. Nearly one in four (22 per cent) said they will award increases of 3 per cent or more. This contrast with 61 per cent who said increases will be under 3 per cent.  

And the driver for more bucks? Skills shortages. Over two-third of respondents (69 per cent) said they’re being forced to offer higher salaries than planned because of the skills shortage.  

Yet Hays also found marketing professional believe their performance and demand for their skills merits an increase greater than 3 per cent. In fact, only 31 per cent of marketers are satisfied with their current salaries, prompting this to become the top factor motivating 57 per cent of job searches. This scored ahead of promotional opportunities and poor management or culture.  

Hays found the skills shortage has made 53 per cent of marketing professionals more confident to ask for a pay rise. And over half (53 per cent) have already benefited from the skills shortage through a salary increase, new job or both.   

“Intense competition for skilled professionals will translate into gradual salary increases this coming financial year,” Hays Marketing and Digital regional director, Eliza Kirkby, commented. “Moving away from the salary stability stance of recent years, employers say the skills shortage is the reason increases are higher than planned. Already, 90 per cent are experiencing a skills shortage, and 82 per cent say it will impact the effective operation or growth plans of their organisation.”    

All this is fuelling a once-in-a-career market, Kirkby said. “Previously camouflaged by skilled migration, and further impacted by headcount growth, skills shortages have reached a level unmatched in our years in recruitment and sparked deliberate salary increases from employers,” she continued.  

“However, while both the value and extent of salary increases is rising, employees’ expectations are growing faster. In a job-rich, candidate-poor market, they feel more assured of their worth and have prioritised a pay rise. 

“In such a market, the number one question we’re asked by employers is how to stand out as their preferred candidate’s first choice.”  

To help, Hays pointed to a wider array of value-based benefits worth pursuing. For example, in its survey, the firm found 33 per cent of marketing employers have improved benefits and working practices to entice more staff. The top three sought by marketing professionals are more annual leave days, training and ongoing learning and development.  

More broadly, Hays found the top five marketing skills in demand right now are marketing management, product management, communications management, digital marketing management and ecommerce management.    

In addition, 65 per cent of marketing employers intend to increase permanent staff levels in FY22/23, while 46 per cent will increase their use of temporary and contract staff.  

CMO is running its first State of the CMO webinar on 15 June 2022 where we'll be exploring the state of marketing leadership, skills and functional capabilities and more. Don't miss this opportunity to gain unique insights into modern marketing leadership and hear from some of the leading brand chiefs locally and globally and register for this complimentary virtual event here.


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