THE IMPACT OF A CHANGE IN POSITION ON LEVEL OF RESPONSIBILITY AND SALARIES

As an appendix to the 2011 survey on pay for salaried engineers, we wanted to measure the impact of a change of employment on the level of responsibility for the new position (same, lower, higher) and the according change in salary brought about by the new position.
 

LEVEL OF RESPONSIBILITY AND THE NEW POSITION

As a whole, among those who changed positions, 51% took a position with senior level responsibility, 39% had the same level and only 10% took a position with reduced responsibility.

Our first finding was that this overall trend changed depending on whether the change of job was voluntary or not, and whether there was a change of company.

In fact, 65% of people who took another position within the same company increased their level of responsibility, while this is only true for 42% of people who changed companies and 33% of those who left because of reorganization, closure or job cuts etc.

While 27% of respondents who remained in the same business changed position to one at the same level of responsibility, this is only true for 49% of those who voluntarily changed companies and 46% of those who had to leave their job.

Regarding the respondents who changed positions for one with less responsibility, 7% stayed in the same company, 9% voluntarily changed companies and 21% had to leave their position.
 

SALARY INCREASE

Engineers who changed positions received an average salary increase of 8.1% while those who remained in their position received on average an increase of 3.7%. 

Engineers who took a new position in the same company received an increase of 8.1%. This mostly accounts for the fact that a large percentage (65%) took a position with greater responsibility. The respondents who took a position in a new company saw their salaries increase by 10%. However, only 42% of them had a position with an increased level of responsibility. Engineers who were forced to leave their jobs due to closure, reorganization, layoff, sale of the company or for other reasons only saw a limited increase in salary (2% on average). 

We observed that those who currently hold a position with a higher level of responsibility than in their previous position received a 10.9% increase on average, whereas those who accepted a position with the same level only received a 6.2% increase. The average increase for people who took a job with a lower level of responsibility is only 1.1%. Table 1 illustrates the findings.
 

TABLE 1 PERCENTAGE INCREASE IN SALARY AND LEVEL OF RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE NEW POSITION


We also observed that for positions with the same level of responsibility, a change in company meant a larger increase in salary. In fact, those who changed employers and took a position with an increased level of responsibility received a 12.3% salary increase compared with 10.6% for those who remained with the same employer. Additionally, people who worked for a new employer in a position with the same level of responsibility saw an increase of 9.4%, compared to a 3.6% increase for those who stayed with the same employer at levels of equivalent responsibility.

People who were forced to leave their position saw lower increases in salary (6.9% for a position with a higher level of responsibility and 0.5% for a position with the same level). People who were forced to leave and who took a position with a less responsibility saw a drop in salary levels by -4.2%.
 

CONCLUSION

The numbers show that voluntarily changing companies for a position with the same level of responsibility meant the best salary. In most cases, the candidate was in a good position to negotiate and not accept a change of employment unless it meant an appreciable growth in salary. 
Two out of every three times, an internal change of position meant a promotion. By taking advantage of their knowledge of the business and the recognition of their skills, these people managed to make their career progress successfully.