Over the last two months, Foodservice Equipment Journal has been carrying out an exclusive survey of the UK catering equipment sector to chart job satisfaction trends among industry professionals. With the results in, here is our headline summary of how you feel about salaries, training and job security post-Brexit.Two-thirds of employees working in the UK catering equipment sector claim they have received a pay rise in the past 12 months. According to the findings of the survey, 67% of professionals in the industry have seen their salary increase over the past year, while a further 16% have experienced a rise within the past two years. The remaining 17% indicated that they haven’t received a salary rise for at least three years or more.
Further analysis reveals that 66% of those who have received a salary rise in the past 12 months saw their take-home pay increase by between 1% and 5%. 10% said their salary had risen between 6% and 10%, while 24% said their salary had grown by more than 10%.The prospect of attaining better promotion and career opportunities elsewhere is the number one reason industry executives would quit their current role. Asked which factor would most encourage them to join a new company (aside from salary reasons), some 49% of respondents picked out the chance to move up the career ladder. One in five executives, meanwhile, say the opportunity to move to a company closer to where they live, or within easier commuting distance, would be their main reason for switching employers.
The potential for greater flexibility in working hours is also becoming an increasingly important factor in employment decisions. 15% of respondents identified it as the primary motivating factor that would persuade them to jump ship. A better pension package would encourage 9% of staff to move jobs ahead of the four other key factors cited in the survey.
Investments made by foodservice equipment companies into staff training have increased considerably in recent years, but there is still work to do, according to the survey. Industry opinion on the level of training that companies provide to staff remains heavily polarised.
An encouraging 48% of respondents insist they are “satisfied” with the current level of training they receive to carry out their role effectively. However, 26% of respondents wish they could get more training than they are currently afforded, while a further 29% claim they receive no training at all.The opportunity to attend an external course is the favoured training option for catering equipment executives. 46% of those polled think that attending a course off-site is the most effective way to improve their skills. On-the-job training from a colleague also ranked highly, with 38% of workers citing this as their preferred method.
Online training has become a quick and cost-effective way of learning, but it only struck a chord with 9% of respondents, possibly because the nature of typical catering equipment job functions, such as sales and operations, commands more tailored tuition. Half of catering equipment executives admit to feeling uncertain about the impact that Britain’s impending exit from the European Union will have on their earnings power. Asked what effect they expect Brexit to have on their salary prospects in 2017, some 50% of UK catering equipment professionals said they had no real feeling for whether it will enhance or lessen their chances of a pay rise.
The research does suggest, however, that more people think it’s likely that Brexit will have negative, rather than positive, repercussions for wages. 41% of respondents said they think Brexit will dent the chances of their salaries increasing, while just 9% said it would improve their chances of a salary rise. The ripple effect of Britain’s decision to leave the European Union has certainly been felt in the catering equipment industry, so it’s no surprise if uncertainty has filtered through to the job market. Just 9% of catering equipment executives say that exiting the EU has made them feel more secure about their jobs.
In contrast, more than a third (34%) are concerned that their job is less secure following the referendum. The overwhelming majority continue to sit on the fence, however, expressing no feeling either way as to what it might mean for job security in the longer term.