IRISH workers will receive the third lowest pay increases in the world this year.
A study from consultancy firm The Hay Group found Irish employees will receive an average pay rise of just 0.8% this year, compared with a global average of 3.8%.
Irish staff will only fare better than workers in Latvia (0.67%) and Singapore (0.22%).
British workers will receive an average pay rise of less than 1.5%, also among the lowest in the world.
The Hay Group said organisations in Ireland were being hit harder by the recession than most firms.
Workers in France will receive pay rises of 2.2%, while those in the US will see 1.78% increases.
Hong Kong, Slovakia and Portugal workers will all receive 1.2% hikes.
The study also found there has been a significant increase in the number of firms freezing salaries, at 38% compared to just under a fifth last November.
A quarter of organisations were eliminating or decreasing training and development programmes, compared to less than a tenth in November.
Meanwhile, a separate poll by recruitment firm Monster found more than three out of four Irish workers do not expect to see an increase in their salary this year. Almost two thirds said they have already been advised that they will not be receiving a pay rise this year.
Workers in Switzerland, Sweden and the Netherlands are most positive about their pay rise prospects, with 44%, 38% and 27% respectively reporting that they expect to receive their annual pay rise.
Julian Acquari, of Monster in Britain and Ireland, said: “For anyone who was hoping for a pay rise this year and is no longer certain of getting one, a good way to achieve it is through changing jobs.
“Although many companies are freezing pay, we’re still seeing movement and competitive offers in the job market. Competition will be higher for jobs but, for the right candidates, the opportunities are definitely out there.”
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