Feature Article - July 2019
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On the Up & Up

Our 12th Annual Salary Survey

By Emily Tipping

Over the past few years, the number of respondents who have reported increases to their salaries has been increasing gradually. Since 2014, when 54.3 percent of respondents said their salary was higher than in 2013, the number reporting higher salaries has risen steadily, reaching 59.8 percent who reported an increase in 2017 and 63.2 percent reporting an increase in 2018, with an average increase of 3.8 percent for all respondents. (See Figure 8.) At the same time, the percentage of respondents reporting a lower salary has fallen relatively steadily, reaching a low of 5.6 percent who saw a decrease in 2018.

Looking forward, as is generally the case, fewer respondents report that they expect to see their salaries increase in 2019. That said, this number is always overturned in the following year. So, for example, in 2018, only 33.1 percent of respondents said they expected their 2018 salary to be higher than their salary in 2017. But this year, 63.2 percent reported their salaries actually were higher. So, while 34.2 percent of respondents in 2019 expect that their salaries this year will be higher than in 2018, we can expect that number to be significantly higher when data is collected in early 2020.

Respondents from parks were the most likely to report that their salaries had increased from 2017 to 2018, with 72.7 percent indicating they'd seen an increase in that time period. They were followed by Ys, where 61.6 percent of respondents reported an increase, and colleges, where 56.7 percent reported an increase. Respondents from health clubs were the least likely to report that their salaries had increased from 2017 to 2018, though nearly half (47.9 percent) reported that they had seen an increase. (See Figure 9.)

While the average salary increase in 2018 for all respondents was 3.4 percent, some industry segments fared better, on average, than others. The highest salary increases were seen among those from Ys and camps, where respondents reported a 3.5 percent increase from 2017 to 2018. They were followed by parks (up 3.4 percent), colleges (up 3.3 percent), and health clubs and rec centers (up 3 percent). The lowest average salary increase from 2017 to 2018 was reported by respondents from schools, whose salaries rose by 2.6 percent in that time period.