Salary Increases for 2015?

Shawnee Love   •  
March 19, 2015

Boy what a difference a few months makes.  Fall 2014, reports were bullish about salary increases for Canadians in 2015.  Predictions ranged from 2.6% to 3.6% on average which was slightly better than previous years.  Then, the price of oil dropped and as much as consumers rejoiced about the low fuel prices, the abrupt change along with other unstable economic predictors nationally and globally means trouble for salary increases here at home.

The Conference Board of Canada recently reported lower expected increases (2.7%) than they were predicting from last summer’s vantage point for 2015. I suspect the reduced expectations are just beginning.

After all, even if your company isn’t or hasn’t had to do layoffs (yet?), the ripple effects of fear seem to be slowing down spending and making businesses cautious about long term HR investments such as hiring new staff, training (despite grants available) and committing to significant salary increases.

If I were a betting person, I’d be willing to guess that when this all plays out, salary increases for 2015 will range between 2-2.5% in the private for profit sector in Western Canada.  2% is hardly noticeable at the end of the year after the government takes their share, but then again, it is better than nothing.  Just ask people recently with Target, Suncor, Sony, Mexx, Talisman Energy, Nexen Energy, Cenovus, Precision Drilling, Conoco, CIBC, …

What do you think? Are you giving salary increases this year?