The starting salary slowdown

Big pay hikes that came with job changes in recent years are beginning to flatten or fall across many industries — a signal for healthcare employers that the bidding wars for talent spanning industries are cooling down.

Average pay for the majority of more than 20,000 jobs on ZipRecruiter this year has declined from last year, The Wall Street Journal reported Aug. 21. In 2022, on the other hand, compensation for 75 percent of advertised job titles increased from the year prior.

In a July survey of about 2,000 employers conducted by ZipRecruiter, nearly half said they have reduced pay for recent job openings. Jobs in technology, transportation and other sectors that saw intensified in 2021 and early 2022 have seen some of the most substantial drops to pay. 

The Journal notes that more in-demand workers in certain industries continue to get pay bumps, such as tourism and construction, without mention of healthcare. 

Signs of starting salary slowdown may be welcomed news for health systems, which saw a 21 percent increase in overall labor expenses from 2019 to 2022 with contract labor expenses up 258 percent, according to the American Hospital Association

Competitive starting salaries for jobs outside of healthcare presented one more challenge for hospitals and health systems to retain a workforce that is more fragile than it was pre-pandemic. An estimated 333,942 healthcare providers dropped out of the workforce in 2021. This spring, as many other industries begin to see the quits rate abate, healthcare saw a bump in the number of resignations as a share of total employment.

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