The UK is reportedly “falling behind” with annual average salary increases for hospitality and events workers, according to new research from payroll software provider Mitrefinch.
The research, which analysed the pay rates for countries over the past two decades, found the UK ranks in 20th place for annual salary increases, behind Ireland, France and the US.
It found that salaries in hospitality and events have risen by 20% for full-time workers in the UK since 2000, compared to 35% for Ireland.
Despite having the seventh highest real minimum wage at £7.56, the UK is behind in rankings as neighbouring countries reportedly improve their salary offerings at a faster rate.
Latvian employees were found to have the largest annual salary increase, with salaries rising by 148%. Hospitality workers in Lithuania saw their pay rise by 144%, with those in Estonia also seeing a rise of over 138% in average annual salary.
Commenting on the figures, Julie Lock, commercial director at Mitrefinch said: “The pandemic has amplified any existing financial concerns for hospitality employees across the UK, with many being furloughed during lockdown or losing work altogether as events were called off, venues were closed.
“Whilst pubs and restaurants have been opened to the public – they have also been shut again on repeat, leaving many businesses extremely vulnerable. As the lockdown eased, staff in hospitality returned back to work again to continue doing what they love most, and they deserve to be recognised for their resilience and hard work over the past year.”
She added: “The data shows us that the increase of both this rate and annual average salaries for full-time employees has been slow in comparison to neighbouring countries, which is disappointing for hospitality workers who have faced an extremely tough year in their industry.”
Jayne Harrison, head of Employment Law at Richard Nelson LLP said: “The data shows average annual salaries in the UK are rising at a slower rate than many neighbouring countries. This is frustrating for hospitality and events employees as they have continued to adapt to government guidelines and have faced unsettling job worries and financial stresses.
“After being hit by the pandemic, hospitality and events employees across the UK are looking to be supported financially by their employers as the economy begins to recover. These workers have played a critical role in getting the nation moving again, and we are expecting to see more of a push back on this over the next year.”