Salaries Up Modestly; Health Care Costs Soar

Article excerpt

In order to remain competitive, banks have taken various steps to ensure that their pay rates and compensation attract and retain employees, according to the results of the newly released 2011 ABA Compensation & Benefits Survey. Forty-eight percent offered bonuses while 36% had an across-the-board increase in salaries. In fact, 84% of respondents chose to increase base salaries in the 12 months prior to March 31,2011. The increase, however, was modest, averaging 2.6%, virtually unchanged from the previous year.

Average base salaries of chief executive officers in 2010 increased less than the average--up by just 1.0% from the previous year. Other results saw a slight percentage drop in the average base salary of the chief operating officer and a 9.3% increase in the lending officer's salary compared to last year's results.

The survey found a wide disparity in staff compensation due to asset size, geography, number of employees, bank structure, and technology. A growing number of positions are commission-based, while other jobs emphasize bonuses and incentives. A majority of surveyed banks offer some type of bonus/incentive plan (72%), with most bonuses being awarded based on bank performance (78%) or individual performance (72%) or both--multiple choices were allowed.

This year, 386 banks nationwide participated in the compensation and benefits survey--now in its 38th year. Close to half of the institutions taking part had assets between $100 and $500 million. …