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Normandin Beaudry

Quebec salaries expected to increase by 2.9% in 2015


There, in black and white

NB Bulletin Vol. 17 N. 8, September 2014

Normandin Beaudry’s annual survey on salary increases reveals that Quebec salaries are expected to increase by 2.9% in 2015. Salary structure increases remain stable with an average increase of 2.0%.

The economic outlook for 2015 is positive. According to economists and financial experts, the labour market is expected to regain its momentum with an increase in job creation. The economic downturn observed in Quebec in recent years is expected to dissipate in favour of a rebound in economic growth. Despite this, organizations continue to be cautious with stable salary increase budgets for a third consecutive year. These budgets have increased since 2010 but remain significantly lower than the budgets of around 3.6% that were granted before the economic crisis hit.

Small businesses are more generous

Once again this year, small businesses are setting themselves apart from the market by forecasting salary increase budgets between 3.4% and 4.5% on average. These budgets are well above the provincial average and higher than 2014 forecasts.

Medium size businesses are more cautious with budgets below the Quebec average (on average between 2.3% and 2.5%). These forecasts are below budgets granted in 2014 in spite of a positive economic outlook. Large size businesses compare to the provincial average and continue to maintain their confidence by announcing salary increase budgets that are higher (3.0%) than those granted in 2014 (2.8%) for the upcoming year.

Regional differences persist in Quebec

Salary increase budgets for certain regions in Quebec are considerably higher than the provincial average for both the budget granted in 2014 and the 2015 forecasts.

  • Quebec City (projected for 2015: 3.3%, granted in 2014: 3.2%);
  • Laurentides, Lanaudière, Mauricie and Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean (projected for 2015: 3.0%, granted in 2014: 3.3%).

For a fourth consecutive year, organizations from Quebec City are forecasting salary increases higher than those for organizations from Montreal. This year, the expected difference is of 0.5% for all job categories.

In spite of a slight decline in the unemployment rate in Montreal, a gap in forecasts continues to exist between these two cities.  One possible explanation is that Quebec City, a region verging on full employment, must continue to stand out to attract talent in that region.

Higher salary increases for a few industries

Despite a certain degree of homogeneity in the salary increase budgets among the different industry sectors, some sectors are forecasting salary increase budgets that are higher than the provincial average. These sectors include retail trade/wholesale trade (3.0%), manufacturing (3.1%), high technology (3.0%), educational services (4.2%) and professional, scientific and technological services (3.0%).

For a second consecutive year, salary increase budgets for privately owned organizations are lower (2.7%) than those for public and parapublic organizations (3.2%).

The employer brand: a driver for improving organizational performance

According to the organizations that participated in the survey conducted by Normandin Beaudry, the issues of workforce attraction and retention continue to be of primary concerns, and monetary compensation alone is not necessarily the solution for these issues.

The results indicate that monetary compensation is very important when it comes to attracting employees, but less important when it comes to retaining them and encouraging them to excel. Non-monetary aspects of work such as challenges and professional development seem to have the opposite impact and are important for enabling organizations to attract talent, retain them and encourage performance.

About the survey

The fourth edition of the Quebec survey on salary increases was conducted in the summer of 2014. A total of 124 organizations completed this survey representing more than 337 000 employees, allowing us to build a reliable database that reflects the realities of Quebec. Data was collected by Normandin Beaudry’s compensation specialists so as to identify labour market trends and present salary forecasts for 2015 that reflect the economic conditions specific to Quebec.

Click here  to access full report (PDF). Available in French only.


Please feel free to contact us for additional information.

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