Scottsdale, Arizona — WorldatWork’s “2021 Total Rewards Inventory Programs & Practices” survey reveals compensation practices are starting to return to normal at most organizations. Market-based adjustments (not COLA) are rising to pre-pandemic levels and, similarly, hazard/call-in pay are beginning to level back down.
The survey of 1,008 U.S. organizations representing different sizes and industries found that market-based adjustments rose to 82% in 2021 from 69% the year prior while hazard pay fell to 19% from 23% the year prior. Perhaps a sign of the tight labor market and rampant employee movement during the year, sign-on bonuses increased to 84% from 71% in 2021, spot bonuses increased to 73% from 64% and retention bonuses increased to 65% from 55%.
Additionally, the survey revealed that changes in how work is done remained in place in 2021. There is continued growth with organizations purposely designing full-time remote roles, rising to 72% this year from 55% in 2019. Telemedicine services, which emerged greatly during the pandemic, stayed commonplace with 97% of organizations offering these programs as part of their health care plan or as a standalone program.
“The survey results emphasize how organizations continue to be agile in adjusting their compensation and HR practices to the new world of work and the shifting expectations of the labor market,” said Deirdre Macbeth, content director, regulatory at WorldatWork.
About the Study
WorldatWork invited its broader membership and customer base to participate in an electronic survey on workplace total rewards programs and practices. A total of 1,008 responses were received, representing U.S. organizations of different sizes and across multiple industries. Email invitations were sent directly to participants on Oct. 25, 2021, and results were collected over a 14-day period. Sample sizes vary by question. Respondents that indicated they weren’t sure if a program was offered were removed from individual question sample sizes.
WorldatWork is the leading global nonprofit organization for professionals engaged in the critically important practice of total rewards. We serve those who are responsible for cultivating inspired, engaged, productive and committed workers in effective and rewarding workplaces. We guide them in the design and delivery of total rewards programs with our education and certification; idea exchange; thought leadership; knowledge creation; information sharing; research; advocacy; and networking.