AAT salary survey: are you on track?

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The current economic climate has put an emphasis on salaries, benefits and job security like never before. AAT conducted a salary survey this year to look at how its members are faring in these conditions. AAT Chief Executive, Jane Scott Paul, finds a lot to be positive about in the results

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We conducted an AAT salary survey in partnership with financial recruiting firm, Robert Half, to not only understand how our members contribute to the accounting profession and overall economy, but also to give us insight into factors that matter at different stages of their working lives.

Some of the results are as you might expect. As AAT members move up the career ladder, expanding their knowledge and skills, they take higher level jobs and their salary increase reflects this. Those that work for larger organisations tend to fare better than those in smaller companies.

A difference in job satisfaction between large and small businesses

What I was intrigued to see was the difference in job satisfaction between large and small businesses. Those that work for larger organisations were more satisfied in their job roles than those that work for smaller businesses. We do know that in harder economic times employees look for other benefits in the workplace and larger businesses are best placed to offer strong benefit packages.

When we asked members about the benefits they would like to receive from their employer, it was motivating to see ‘courses paid for by employers’ and ‘paid time off to study’ in their ‘top five’ desired benefits. We avidly encourage lifelong learning and want our members to be continuously investing in their CPD, so I’m glad that this is also a priority for them.

Women working part-time are earning more than men

It’s also interesting to see that women working part-time earn £4 more than men working part-time which could potentially mean that women are working more hours consistently.

We do know that women make up a large majority of our membership (65 per cent worldwide) and they work around other commitments including their families so they may be working longer just at more unusual hours.

Members keen to stay in their existing job

The survey also showed that regardless of age (from 15-55+) our members intend to stay in the same job role and with the same employer. Some may be surprised by this – especially among the younger age groups that often have a nature to move between jobs more frequently. I think in the current economic climate employees are thinking more carefully about their next steps.

A large majority (72 per cent) say they have good job satisfaction which indicates that those who study AAT (at any level) are challenged in the workplace and use their knowledge in their day-to-day work.

More than three quarters have strong job security

Furthermore, a huge 78 per cent say they have strong job security which is often due to employers investing in staff. This form of support creates a loyal and happy workforce and the results clearly show this.

As long as employers continue to invest in staff, they will continue to develop well-trained, productive individuals who in return bring new skills, insight and value to any business.

You can download your free copy of the 2013 Salary and Career Survey on the AAT website. You will also gain access to our interactive salary calculator which will show you exactly how you compare to the average salaries for your age, region, gender, sector and job level.

Jane Scott Paul was AAT's Chief Executive between 1997 and 2014.

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