2016 Global Compensation Planning Report


This Report includes analyses of economic trends and salary increase data by local Mercer consultants and experts. The report focuses on salary increases and economic trends, but also includes information on short-term incentives, attracting and retaining employees. It provides a more nuanced view of planned salary increases, the data show salary increases both with and without companies that reported salary freezes (including and excluding zeroes).

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Economic trends and forecasts provide human resource professionals direction in terms of hiring intentions and capacity, attraction and retention efforts, and competitive levels of compensation and benefits. It is imperative for employers across different geographies to understand the economic scenario for their future growth planning.

Mercer’s unique Global Compensation Planning Report (GCPR) presents hard-to-find information on salary trends and key economic and labour market indices.

Covering 124 countries, (and 145 markets), GCPR is a reliable source of information on economic and salary increase trends across career levels (executive, management, professional, and para-professional). Available year round as an online tool or biannually in PDF format (July and October to coincide with annual compensation discussions), GCPR offers past year, current year, and future year (projected) information:

  • Pay increases.
  • Economic indicators (GDP changes, inflation, and unemployment rates).
  • Regional overviews.
  • Short-term incentives and labour market information.

Mercer Global Compensation Planning Report is organized into seven main sections:

  1. The Introduction section provides the report structure and a brief note on the topics covered in the report.
  2. The Compensation Strategy section provides recommended guidelines and considerations for effective compensation programs.
  3. The Summary of key findings provides an overview on economic trends, salary increases, short-term incentives, mandatory salary increase schemes, and talent forecasts.
  4. The Economic trends section summarizes economic measures, by percentage, for all countries represented in the report.
  5. The Salary increase trends section summarizes compensation trends, by percentage, for all countries represented in the report.
    Data are presented both excluding and including zeroes.
  6. The individual country pages provide important insights into the economic climate of each country, as well as actions being taken and considered by employers around the world.
    —  Economic trends: This section shows the gross domestic product annual average change (%), inflation annual average change (%), and unemployment (%) for the three years covered.
    —  Base salary increases: Mercer collects data on salary increases through detailed surveys of representative companies with operations in the countries analysed in the report. This figure includes merit increases, across-the-board increases, and any mandatory increase granted for inflation (cost-of-living adjustment). This section includes a table showing the percentage of companies reporting zero salary increases, and salary increases for six employee levels (plus “all employees”) excluding zeroes and including zeroes. All salary increase figures represent median values, except the figures denoted with an asterisk that represent average values, in case of small survey samples.
    —  Mandatory salary increase schemes: This section describes any mandatory salary increase schemes that might apply in the country.
    —  Short-term incentives: Variable bonus: This section shows variable bonus by employee level.
    —  Attracting and retaining employees: This section lists the employees hardest to attract and the employees hardest to retain.
  7. The About this report section includes the report methodology and a glossary of terms and definitions.

More Report Details

Comprehensive Data

The Global Compensation Planning Report offers global and regional reports, each provide six core sections:

  • Compensation strategy insights provides recommended guidelines and considerations for effective compensation programmes.
  • Summary of key findings provides an overview on all elements covered in the report.
  • Economic trends summarizes GDP, inflation and unemployment economic measures for each country.
  • Salary increase trends summarizes prior year, current year and future year increases.
  • Country pages provide further context with:
    • Economic trends
    • Base salary increases
    • Mandatory salary increase schemes
    • Short-term incentive / variable bonus data
    • Data on roles that may be difficult to attract or retain


124 countries. 145 markets.


  • Americas.
  • Asia Pacific.
  • Europe, Middle East, Africa

Employee Levels

GCPR offers most of its compensation information across employee levels. The following are represented in this report:

  • All employees
  • Executive
  • Management
  • Professional - Sales
  • Professional - Nonsales
  • Para-professional - White collar
  • Para-professional - Blue collar

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