Belgian salary most satisfying in Europe, study shows

Belgian salary most satisfying in Europe, study shows
Worker at the Antwerp Terminal and Processing Company (ATPC). Credit: Belga / Dirk Waem

Almost half of the employed population in Belgium feel their pay is fair compared to colleagues or others in the sector, putting the country ahead of the rest of Europe.

Belgian residents are among the happiest about the fairness of their salary package, as almost one in two workers (45%) agrees their pay is in line with that of their colleagues, confirmed a recent study by human resources provider SD Worx which surveyed 16,011 European workers. This is much higher than levels recorded in the other 15 countries surveyed by SD Worx.

"It is positive that almost half of Belgian employees are convinced. Companies that make an extra effort will be able to convince even more employees," said Reward specialist Virginie Verschooris.

Germany and Finland follow with almost four out of ten workers convinced that their pay is fair compared to that of their colleagues. By contrast, fewer than 30% agree with this statement in France and Sweden.

In Belgium, too, one in five (22%) is not yet convinced of internal fairness within the company. Verschooris stressed that "offering employees a perspective is motivating and has a positive effect on recruitment and retention policies."

In terms of confidence in market fairness, Belgian residents also place themselves at the top of the European leaderboard, as 41% of Belgian employees consider their pay package fair compared to others doing similar work in other organisations. Meanwhile, for a quarter of surveyed Belgians, market conformity could be even better.

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The study's results come in the wake of a European directive which will impose transparency about the salaries of certain roles on all companies to eliminate the gender pay gap. This will ensure that both current employees and job applicants will be able to see what salary is linked to which position. Belgium must transpose this directive into national legislation by 2026.

"Those who continue to work on a transparent and flexible wage policy with pay scales and evolution possibilities will be ready by 2026 for the new obligations in terms of wage transparency," said Verschooris.

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