The Randstad 2018 US Salary Guides points out it is now a job seeker’s market. What this means for your small business is you are very likely going to deal with competitive pay for your current employees and any new hires.
2018 Salary Trends
The competitive rates are being driven by a 4.1 percent unemployment rate and increased wages. Additionally, companies are investing back  in their human capital with bonuses, raises and other incentives due to the corporate tax cuts.
Even though small businesses didn’t get the same historic tax cut as corporations, they still have to deal with the high demand for workers. And when there is high demand, job seekers generally have the upper hand in negotiating salaries.
The 2018 Salary Guides  says salaries have risen by three percent across many fields and industries. And employees expect to get paid accordingly, which is what Jim Link, chief human resources officer at Randstad North America, explained in a press release  announcing the report. He said, “Paying employees a competitive salary has never been more important than it is today… today’s tight labor market means employers risk losing both current and prospective talent if they don’t pay according to job seekers’ expectations.”
Salary Guides is published by Randstad US annually with compensation data in key geographic markets across different fields and industries. The salaries can vary depending on local market conditions and position-specific requirements, including experience, certifications and knowledge of software.
The report combines salary data along with proprietary Randstad data, and information provided by the Economic Research Institute.
What Do Employees Expect?
The pay ranges in the guide are from common job titles or positions in engineering, finance and accounting, clinical and non-clinical healthcare, human resources, information technology, life sciences, manufacturing and logistics and office and administration.
Examples include: $125,233 for a senior-level validation engineer in the Northeast; $65,015 — $75,090 for a financial analyst in a large company in Baltimore, MD; $114,722 for a mid-level machine learning engineer in Atlanta, GA; $30.82 — $38.57/hour for an executive assistant with seven years of experience in Miami, FL; and $14.51 – $17.71/hour for a medical receptionist with five years of experience in Houston, TX.
Alternative Workforce for Small Businesses
As a small business, you now have more option than ever when it comes to hiring the right person. Freelancers  are a great alternative for one-off projects or specialized tasks that don’t require a full-time hire.
By properly managing these tasks with freelancers, you will save money, and the savings can be used to hire quality full-time employees.