It's the high rise for e-business
The UK's Internet-centric businesses are paying
more to keep staff, or they risk losing them
to traditional firms, according to a new survey.
As stock options have collapsed into free-fall
dot coms, and other risky firms are having to
raise salaries, according to human resources
giant Hay Management Consultants.
Basic salaries in e-business are set to rise
by 9.7 percent on the next review, compared with
3.6 percent for the broader industry and service
market, said Hay. Basic wages for e-business
rose about 7.2 percent for the year to July 2000,
according to Hay's statistics.
Chief executives and department heads can expect
even more jam as firms seek to keep their key
talent and fend off an exodus to orthodox companies.
Hay expects the increase to be 13.6 percent at
the next review for the chief executives.
Iain Smith, a consultant at Hay, said: "Stock
is no longer enough on its own. Employees realise
that stock options might not materialise into
a gain and they need a more immediate reward.
They are acting as investment analysts of their
One company having to raise its salaries is
Dell. Brian McBride, vice president of Dell UK
and Ireland, said, "We're having to pay more
in terms of basic wages, whereas before, people
were looking more at their stock options. Now
we say to people, 'we expect to grow solidly,
so if you're here for three to five years, you
should do well.'"
According to Hay, the demand for e-business
skills is changing, with an increased demand
for integrators with a blend of new and traditional
"If your Internet skills are only programming
skills, you would still be worth more than a
C++ programmer, but the real premiums will go
to people who can put all the systems together,
from the back end through the transaction system
to the front end and Web enabling," Smith said.
"Often, dot com firms are looking for people
who have worked in large businesses and have
classic team and project management skills."
Internet-centric firms are still paying substantially
higher average sums than traditional businesses,
but salary increases will not go on indefinitely.
"The big unknown is the demand for e-people going
forward," said Smith.
"There are so many who have experienced working
in that environment, and know basic Internet
technologies, yet many big firms plan major e-business
projects so that could prolong demand."