On September 20 (Montreal) and September 27 (Quebec City), the Ordre des conseillers en ressources humaines [Order of Human Resource Advisors] unveiled their salary predictions for the year 2019. Here is an overview of the results.

If the current trend continues for the remainder of the year, the 2018 salary increase budgets will be higher than what companies had anticipated during the summer of 2017:

2018, Actual 2017 Predictions
Quebec 3.9 % 2.5 %

The historic low in employment and the thriving economy seem to be making a significant impact on salary increases in Quebec.

For the year 2019, Quebec companies are anticipating a salary increase budget of 2.7%. This prediction is slightly higher than what we experienced over the last few years. However, economists in attendance at the Order’s conferences do not see a recession on the horizon. In the present context, short of a drastic change that would bring the economic growth cycle to an end, we can expect that over the next year, organisations will continue to grow and their need for staff will increase.

The forecasted increases for 2019 could be in the range of 4.2%

Consequently, unless a sudden mass arrival of workers from abroad emerges to counteract the current demographic crisis, there is strong evidence to indicate that the labour shortage will continue, along with the pressure for salary increases. Thus, there is little doubt that the 2019 actual salary increases will be higher than the predicted 2.7%.

According to the firm PCI Perreault Conseil, the forecasted increases for 2019 could be in the range of 4.2% if we take into account the additional budget that organisations reserve for special cases involving non-unionized positions,.

Organisations that follow the IPC to determine their salary increases must pay close attention to this data. Inflation in Canada was around 2.5% in June and 2.8% in August. While this number seems to align with the 2019 salary predictions, it does not consider the 2018 market’s actual increases, or the impact of the additional budget presented by PCI Perreault.

The table below presents the 2019 salary predictions, excluding freezes, as published by the Ordre de conseillers en ressources humaines, based on various clustering parameters.

  Salary Increase Structure Increase
Average of All Jobs  2.7 % 2.1 %
Activity Sectors
  • Arts, shows, and leisure
2.4 % 1.8 %
  • Professional, Scientific and Technical Services
2.9 % 2.4 %
  • Production
2.6 % 2.1 %
  • Wholesale and Retail Sales
2.5 % 2.0 %
  • Finances, Insurance and Real Estate
2.6 % 1.9 %
  • Public Service
2.5 % 2.2 %
  • Information Technology and Communication
2.7 % 2.2 %
Job Categories
  • Senior Management, Senior Executives
2.7 % 2.1 %
  • Other Executives and Professionals
2.7 % 2.1 %
  • Operations and Production
2.6 % 2.1 %
  • Administrative and Technical Support
2.6 % 2.1 %
Company Size
  • 0 – 99 employees
2.8 % 2.3 %
  • 100 – 499 employees
2.6 % 2.1 %

Beyond salary predictions, it is still important for every company to take into account its specific reality. The salary increase budget must therefore bear in mind the following elements:

  • Demographic profile of employees and both the company’s and employee’s stated needs.
  • Short and long-term retention challenges.
  • Company’s financial situation
  • Difficulty attracting candidates to certain positions
  • Organisation’s positioning with respect to its market reference and the global compensation.
  • Value of the base salary within the global compensation offer.

We invite you to bring any of your questions to a member of our expert compensation team.


Published On: 23 September 2018



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