Realizing the importance of salary survey information for senior living providers to build and maintain competitive pay structures for their employees, LeadingAge Illinois recently released their annual salary and benefits reports conducted with member organizations. The reports provide key salary and benefits comparisons across regions and positions (i.e., administration, managers, professionals, service/care staff, and consultants).
Senior living providers may utilize findings in their own organizations to ensure salary and benefit plans are internally equitable as well as externally competitive. Achieving these criteria enables organizations to recruit, retain, and motivate quality employees.
A total of 152 organizations participated in the 2014 LeadingAge Illinois survey. Over 70 percent of respondents are not-for-profits and 40 percent represent Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRCs). Salaries for more than 120 job classifications are presented with detailed breakdowns by quartiles and Illinois regions.
Comparing salaries for job classifications, 2013 salary increases for upper management positions averaged 2 to 3 percent, compared to average 2013 salary increases for middle management and staff positions of 3 to 5 percent.
Evaluation of employee benefits is the second key component of the report. A number of internal and external issues have been impacting employee benefits programs in recent years, including legislative changes, escalating expenses, reduced human resources budgets, and economic factors. LeadingAge Illinois members are gradually making changes to their benefit plans in light of these factors.
Several elements of benefit plans also differ by region. For example, nearly the same percent of senior living providers in the Chicago area offer employees a paid time off (PTO) plan compared to a traditional plan (i.e., separate time off for vacation, sick time, holidays, and personal days). In comparison, two-thirds of providers in other areas of the state provide PTO plans to employees. Additional areas of benefit plan analysis include insurance offerings, prescriptive medication coverage, insurance coverage, pension/401(k) plans, child care benefit, tuition reimbursement, employee wellness programs, and unemployment tax, claims, and costs.
In addition to the value of these reports in benchmarking one’s own salary and benefit offerings, implications for senior living providers include the following:
- Identify strategies to comply with the Affordable Care Act legislation implementation requirements over the next few years;
- Promote workplace flexibility policies that meet the needs of both employers and employees, particularly with the growing number of employee caregivers;
- Improve employee benefits communication to ensure employees understand the growing number of options; and
- Regularly review benefits via employee satisfaction surveys to ensure plans are meeting the needs and expectations of employees.