One of the most common topics of discussions with employers, employees and recruitment companies in Bangkok is the pay of a job. Korn Ferry recently released their forecast for 2019, expecting a 5.5% increase in salary across the country for the year, same as the preceding year.
According to the Korn Ferry 2019 Global Salary Forecasst, Thailand is currently sitting at 5th, out of 100 countries, in terms of expected real salary growth (inflation-adjusted), tied with Azerbaijan; both sitting at 3.9%. The four countries ranked higher are Vietnam (4.8%), India (5.0%), Turkey(5.5%), and Ukraine (5.9%).
Globally, Asia is the region expected to see the most real salary growth for 2019, with the inflation-adjusted increase expected to be around 2.6%, which is, notably, a decrease from the preceding year’s 2.8%. The other regions, for comparison, are the Pacific (0.3%), the Middle East (0.4%), North America (0.6%), Western Europe (0.7%) Africa (0.9%), Latin America (1.3%), and Eastern Europe (2.0%).
As a country, Thailand managed to grow its economy at the highest rate since 2012, with the country’s GDP growth expected to be around 4.5%. Meanwhile, to the benefit of many recruitment companies in Bangkok, unemployment is expected to hover around 0.9%.
According to Managing Director Mana Lohatepanont, Korn Ferry Thailand, the increase can be tied to the forecasted growth in the GDP. The numbers are more even, due to the fact that local Thai businesses are opting for more conservative options for 2019, with the threat of global economic slowdown, the trade war, the upcoming local election, and rising interest rates.
Lohatepanont says that, as organisations in Thailand work on transforming their operations and expanding their capabilities, there’s a necessity of managing and balancing the costs of acquiring new skill and talents while keeping the current workforce.
The forecast made by Korn Ferry draws on the firm’s pay database, which has data for at least 20 million workers spread across 25,000 organisations from 110 countries across the world. The firm’s experts recommend that companies take a holistic approach when they’re calculating salary, noting that, while inflation indices are a good benchmark for market trends in salary, they still need to regularly review compensation programmes to make sure they’re aligned with market conditions.