Do you want to know how much your work colleagues earn?

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You are not alone. Nearly three-quarters of employees would want to know how high paycheck of their colleagues is. Salaries and wages remain a taboo subject in European countries. Companies usually try to keep pay details secret and very few employers publish salary and wage details in their job adverts. But companies are starting to drive some iniciatives to convince the workers that their company remuneration is fair. Are you sure that your remuneration is treated fairly compared to other colleagues in your company?

Paylab portal conducted the international survey on how big is people’s temptation to know how much their colleagues, friends, neighbours and acquaintances earn. Is it common to talk about our pay in private? Most employees agree that salary details are a private matter and a very sensitive topic of discussion.

Watch our VIDEO with key findings of the survey on people’s attitudes towards their pay.:



The survey was conducted on-line from May to June 2017 in 9 European countries using a sample of 40,262 employees through local salary portals under the Paylab brand and with identical data acquisition methods. The survey is part of PAYLAB COMPENSATION MONITOR which observes on regular basis trends related to remuneration. Read detailed findings in Paylab Newsroom.

The higher the income, the greater resistance to salary disclosure

Paylab also attempted to determine if attitudes towards pay and salaries vary by income level. The survey showed that people with higher or lower incomes were roughly just as interested in the pay of others. However, employees who earn less than average in the country are much more open to discuss their income with their surroundings. People in management positions are the least likely to share any salary details. Only half the employees in lower and middle management and 39 per cent of top managers agree that those closest to them know how much they actually earn.


Is salary disclosure a good thing?

Salary disclosure is a very unpredictable process in any company, and management and the HR department are often hesitant to take such a step. If a company is unable to clearly communicate its salary policy and compensation and benefits overall, then this process can result in more harm than good. Companies should be upfront in communicating the fact that they care about the adequate and fair compensation of their employees. Read more in our blog: Are companies prepared for salary disclosure?

Communication and Market Research Specialist with focus on Compensation & Benefits