ACI HR Solutions’ annual study of employment trends in Asia-Pacific’s hospitality industry has revealed an improved landscape dotted with pay increments, bonuses and strong hiring demands.
The ACI Report 2023, which surveyed 798 hospitality professionals, found that 55 per cent of respondents obtained a pay increment while 47 per cent were given a bonus last year. The majority (36 per cent) received one to two months’ bonuses.
In 2021, 26 per cent of respondents reported a salary increment while 37 per cent received a bonus.
Salaries across the region trended mostly positive, indicating that companies have begun returning to pre-pandemic salaries and higher to retain and attract talents.
The UAE, Saudi Arabia and Qatar once again recorded the highest average salaries (US$144,784). Despite being shut out to international tourism for the majority of 2022, Hong Kong still saw a 23 per cent increase to average salary (US$129,522), while Australia also saw strong salary growth of 16 per cent to average salary (US$100,926).
In Singapore, average salaries nudged up just 3.7 per cent despite an intense need for hospitality talents to support the city-state’s return to international tourism.
Andrew Chan, founder & CEO of ACI HR Solutions, told TTG Asia that the increment in Singapore might have remained low, as “companies were still cautious in 2022” and “balancing between fiscal responsibilities and talent demands”.
Meanwhile, the lowest recorded average salary was in the Philippines (US$47,102), which also saw a further 22 per cent decline from the previous study.
Further optimistic indicators are seen in hiring demand, with 58 per cent of HR managers and recruiters expressing a need for new headcount in 2023 – a level not seen for over a decade. However, they have identified various challenges in recruitment – access to the right talents, lack of applicants, and higher salary expectations than budgeted.
While employee sentiments have improved – 59 per cent believing the worst is now behind them, compared with 46 per cent in the previous report, 56 per cent of respondents expect to change jobs in 2023.
The strong desire for job switches may have been driven by renewed confidence in the industry, which in turn made respondents “more open to greener pastures”, explained Chan.
He urged employers to keep engagement levels high during this period. “Now, more than ever, HR will play a critical role in retaining these talents,” he added.
The full report can be downloaded here.