Property pay increases, but gender pay gap widens

Peter Moore MRICS, Managing Director, Macdonald & Company, explains the key findings from the annual RICS and Macdonald & Company Rewards & Attitudes Survey.

Key findings:

  • Male property professionals earn, on average, £11,000 more than female counterparts (£7,000 in 2016);
  • Sector salary pay rises up 7.2% overall, above UK wage inflation;
  • Average salaries down, but due to changing demographics of the survey.

Key findings for the 2017 RICS and Macdonald & Company Rewards and Attitudes Survey show that both the proportion of respondents who received an increase to their basic salary (+3% to 67%) and the average size of that increase (+0.6% to 7.7%) rose year on year.

However, it is notable that the mean average salary and the total reward received by property professionals both fell when compared to 2016. This is, in large part, attributable to changes in the demographic of respondents with 10% fewer respondents with 16 years’ experience or more and 9% more with 10 years’ or less.

It is also clear that a professional qualification is highly valued by the industry. At 20.9%, achieving a professional qualification led to the largest increase for respondents who indicated they had seen their salary rise this year. On average, respondents with a RICS qualification earn £55,644 versus £39,589 for those who identified as “Not Professionally Qualified”.

By comparison, the increase awarded as part of an annual pay review was 4.5%.

Looking forward, the survey also shows a marked softening in general confidence across the industry. With the prospect of a rise in interest rates becoming more likely, and political uncertainty at home and abroad, it is perhaps unsurprising that the industry has entered 2017 in a more cautious mood. In fact, falling confidence and rising uncertainty is a trend that has emerged over the past three years.

The 28% drop in respondents who expect economic activity to improve between 2015 and 2017 demonstrates this, although, at 52% the majority expect business as usual.

The results do paint a more uncertain picture than the past few years but, when taken overall, still demonstrate that the property industry remains a rewarding sector in which to work, offering attractive financial and professional rewards.”

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