Pay for performance trend picks up: Kelly survey

  • Responses from more than 120,000 respondents in 31 countries, including approximately 5,200 in Malaysia
  • 67% in Malaysia say they would be more productive if earnings were linked to performance/ productivity

THERE is widespread support for performance-based pay, with 87% of Malaysian employees in sales already on variable pay arrangements while more than half of respondents say that they would become more productive if they were as well.
A total of 72% and 59% of respondents in Malaysia and Asia Pacific respectively have their pay tied to some form of performance or productivity targets, according to the latest findings from the Kelly Global Workforce Index (KGWI).
 Pay for performance trend picks up: Kelly survey
Among those not on performance-based pay, 67% in Malaysia and 56% in Asia Pacific say they would be more productive if they had their earnings linked to performance/ productivity outcomes, Kelly Services said in a statement.
Kelly Services Malaysia managing director Melissa Norman (pic) said the trend reflects widespread recognition that organisations and individuals perform best when their interests are aligned.
“There are many employees who are clearly confident in their ability to perform their jobs well, and they want the opportunity to be compensated according to their performance,” she said.
Kelly Services offers outsourcing and consulting services as well as staffing on a temporary, temporary-to-hire, and direct-hire basis.
The survey canvassed responses from more than 120,000 respondents in 31 countries, including approximately 24,000 in the Asia Pacific region and 5,200 in Malaysia.
The highest rates of performance-based pay are recorded by respondents in China, Indonesia and Thailand, all with 75%, followed by Malaysia (72%), Russia (70%), India (67%), Singapore (63%), Hong Kong (62%), New Zealand (36%) and Australia (29%).
Results of the survey in Malaysia (click infographic below to download it in PDF form):

  • When asked to choose between pay for overtime worked, and pay for performance, 67% of respondents preferred the latter in comparison to 25% for overtime worked.
  • The incidence of performance pay is higher among younger workers in the Gen Y and Gen X demographics, and also among males, and those with professional or technical jobs.
  • Only 45% of those surveyed in Malaysia and 43% in Asia Pacific agree that their current pay is equitable.
  • Among job sectors, the highest rates of performance-based pay in Malaysia are in security (73%), education (64%), math (58%), and healthcare (49%). This differs from Asia Pacific with the highest rates of performance-based pay in sales (80%), marketing (71%), engineering (67%), and IT (61%).
Pay for performance trend picks up: Kelly survey

Performance-based pay includes any arrangement where an element of the total remuneration is tied to meeting performance targets, including profit sharing, performance bonuses and sales commissions.
Norman said a renewed focus on ways of lifting productivity in enterprises has placed added emphasis on the role of remuneration in raising business performance.
“Performance-based incentive schemes can be a win-win situation. Employees can benefit from the opportunity to work smarter and raise their earnings capacity, while employers benefit from increased productivity and a more engaged workforce,” she said.
Complete findings are published in a new report, Paying for Performance at
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