Strategic Pay

Taking a strategic approach to good staff

Dayna Hendry, Senior Consultant at Strategic Pay

Despite some dire predictions of job losses and business downturn, Dayna Hendry of Strategic Pay says employers are continuing to seek out skilled staff and intend to continue to do so for the rest of the year.

“This time last year we were seeing a very tight employment market with little migration and real shortages. A year on, despite the increase in migration that has been experienced we still have employers clamouring for good, skilled staff across all areas,” Dayna says.

Like its clients, Strategic Pay has also expanded its own staff numbers to meet the continuing strong demand for its specialty skilled services offering remuneration solutions and package options for employer clients.

The employment landscape has changed radically since Covid’s arrival three years ago, and Dayna and her team of experienced remuneration consultants have helped clients navigate the significant shifts in employee expectations that accompanied the global pandemic.

Three years on, those expectations continue and employees are equally capable of obtaining them in a continuing tight labour market. “We are also seeing more employers considering total remuneration options which may include variables such as bonuses or inventive payments, rather than just increasing base pay.”

She remains impressed at the level of creativity and flexibility employers are prepared to incorporate into remuneration packages, if it means they can secure the right staff for the right job.

Where employers were previously hesitant about how to offer options like working from home, family friendly hours and flexible leave, the past three years have proven employees’ ability to prove that productivity can remain the same or even grow with the right package combination.

Her optimism about employment opportunities for the coming few months is reinforced by responses to Strategic Pay’s own remuneration surveys and reports. “We are seeing businesses forecasting that they intend to continue to keep growing their head count across the board from factory floor to management level, with a third having good growth expectations.”

Employees with strong technical skills continue to remain in particularly high demand, with the Bay of Plenty’s growing agritech base calling out for additional talent to meet business growth curves.

With its nationwide reach, Strategic Pay collates national data to determine how closely salary packages meet external benchmarks.

Dayna says the entire remuneration package being offered can be fully scrutinised against nationwide levels.

But even with the gates firmly open to migrants coming into New Zealand compared to a year ago, securing the right staff can still be tough.

Strategic Pay’s team draw on a strong national network of consultants to assess and present package options to employer clients and put them into a realistic context. Often new appointments also bring an opportunity to redesign and revisit an organisation’s structure, providing a pathway to improve company efficiencies and outcomes that Strategic Pay consultants can also assist with.

While not promising to have a crystal ball for the coming year, Dayna and her team feel optimistic about employment opportunities in coming months, with no real indications the strong growth experienced in the past months is likely to cool.

“Organisations still need good skilled staff, and we are digging deep for our clients to come up with some innovative and interesting remuneration packages that really reflect the needs of our clients, and their employees’ expectations.”

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