Public Works 2016 Salary Survey: As good as it gets?

According to the most recent reports from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, state and local governments pay workers an average of $44.66 per hour in compensation, with salary accounting for about 64% of that sum and benefits accounting for 36%. This translates to $28.45 in salary and $16.21 in benefits. Employees in private industry receive an average of $31.53 per hour in total compensation, which includes $21.98 in salary (about 70% of compensation costs) and $9.55 in benefits (30%).

To assess the impact of the Great Recession, five years ago we began asking respondents if their pay had increased, decreased, or stayed the same. More than half reported salary freezes. Since then, we’ve seen steady improvement. When compared with 2011 responses, the current percentage reporting salary freezes dropped by more than one-half. The number of respondents who say they’ve received a raise increased by 40%, and the number reporting pay cuts dropped by 10%.

This chart shows a sampling of the biggest changes in benefits offered by public employers since 2008. Although most changes indicate decreased offerings, advances in technology and prioritization on workplace succession may have motivated more employers to provide mobile devices as well as paid training, which often can be done online.

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