Salary Guide 2016

Australia salary survey guide 2016

View the findings from each sector:


Specialisation is key for salary growth in Australia: Hiring organisations are cautious yet flexible where there is a shortage of in-demand talent.

Leading global professional services recruiter, Morgan McKinley, has released its 2016 Australian Salary Guide, providing insights into hiring and salary trends over the past 12 months and forecasts for the current year. The guide covers Morgan McKinley’s specialist sectors and professional disciplines: Accounting & Finance, IT & Business Transformation, Risk, Compliance & Audit as well as Strategy.

Key highlights:

  • Overall salaries have remained flat across these core disciplines.
  • Those who have a track record in driving revenue growth and profitability, or achieving cost savings, will be able to command higher salaries.
  • Professionals who demonstrate an ability to communicate effectively outside of their core disciplines (“business partners”) are also in strong demand.
  • Change and project management specialists – in particular professionals with Lean or Six Sigma qualifications and experience in “Agile” software development are highly sought after.
  • Digital transformation is a current business priority for many organisations – therefore individuals with skills in big data analytics and mobile & online platforms are also in demand.
  • There is increasing pressure on Australian firms to reduce costs. One consequence is more outsourcing and offshoring of non-core business activities. Another is more hiring for fixed-term and temporary positions.
  • Given the expectation of low salary growth in permanent positions, longer term career progression is a primary concern for job seekers. Companies must address this to attract top performers.
  • Staff retention is also an issue for many organisations.
  • Businesses are striving for improved gender balance at leadership levels but progress has been slow.

“The slow recovery of consumer confidence, the slide in commodity prices and falls in the Chinese stock market have all contributed to lingering concerns about Australia’s economic growth prospects, despite the fall in the value of the Australian dollar and low interest rates,” comments Louise Langridge, Joint Managing Director, Morgan McKinley Australia. “Therefore it comes as no major surprise that our annual salary survey has revealed a trend of slow overall growth in salaries.”

Nevertheless there is a shortage of talent in some sectors and professional disciplines and strong demand for results-oriented individuals who can help move organisations to the next level, in terms of revenue growth, cost reduction and competitiveness.

“In disciplines such as Accounting & Finance, having the right professional qualifications will not necessarily land an exciting opportunity. As these disciplines become more highly specialised, the ability to communicate with other functions within the business is an important counter-trend. Demonstrable soft skills, such as the ability to present a business case to senior executives, or fluency in foreign languages, in particular Mandarin, can make all the difference.

“Similarly, as organisations face sharper competition to retain or extend market share and customer loyalty, they are putting a premium on change management and expertise in the newer information technologies,” she adds.

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