Canada Employment: Energy Sector Gives Off Highest Salary Hikes

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By Esther Tanquintic-Misa | August 20, 2014 1:42 PM EST

Canadian workers seeking higher and better financial compensation may want to transfer to the country's energy sector. A survey released by global consulting firm Mercer on Monday said the energy sector is forecast to experience a pay hike of 3.7 per cent in 2015.

REUTERS/Chris Wattie
A woman wears sunglasses in the shape of Canadian flags during Canada Day celebrations on Parliament Hill in Ottawa July 1, 2014. Canadians are celebrating their country's 147th birthday.

That's still a major hike to the actual 3.9 per cent increase in 2014.

Allison Griffiths, Mercer's Canadian Workforce Rewards Practice Leader, said the pay increases are motivated by the oil and gas numbers, as well as the energy sector employers typically having bigger budgets than employers from the other sectors.

Another factor for the huge base pay offers is the common fact that employers compete with each other for key talent.

Griffiths also noted that companies are feeling more stable and more confident about their outlooks, thus the hefty jumps in base pay.

"This year's results are not surprising. Over the last five years we've observed a differential between the national projection and energy sector of approximately one per cent," Griffiths said. "When we remove the energy sector from the national sample, the average projected salary increase drops to 2.9 per cent.

On the other end, workers in the transportation, equipment, consumer goods and retail/wholesale industries ought to brace for minimal salary increases forecast to reach only 2.6 or 2.7 per cent.

In the case of the retail industry, their profits and margins are usually very tight, thus they are very conservative with their salary increases, Griffiths said.

Per region, Alberta is expected to receive highest average salary increase at 3.2 per cent, followed by Saskatchewan at 3.1 per cent.

On the other end, Quebec and Atlantic Canada will receive the lowest projected salary increase at 2.8 per cent each.

The projected salary increase for 2015 for the Greater Toronto Area is 2.9 per cent, while it's 3 per cent for the rest of Ontario, which is the same as the national average.

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(Photo: REUTERS/Chris Wattie / )
A woman wears sunglasses in the shape of Canadian flags during Canada Day celebrations on Parliament Hill in Ottawa July 1, 2014. Canadians are celebrating their country's 147th birthday.
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