PwC renews its salary structure, bonus payout and other benefits

25 July 2021 Consultancy.com.au 3 min. read
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Professional services firm PwC has announced a range of new pay and reward initiatives – in what is the latest move among the Big Four to attract and retain staff amid a national talent shortfall.

PwC has let off the latest round in the ongoing battle for local talent, announcing a new ‘Total Reward Strategy’ which should lead to consistent pay increases and will likely double the number of staff eligible to receive bonuses to around 80 percent. The firm will also invest $15 million into a new ‘PwC Academy’, described as a world-class learning and education program for employees.

“To attract and keep the best talent in the market you’ve got to ensure that your reward strategy is the best in the industry and responds to what your people value and what motivates them,” said PwC CEO Tom Seymour, who noted that the new rewards package was formed in response to employee engagement surveys and assessed by the fifteen members of PwC’s People Council.
PwC renews its salary structure, bonus payout and other benefits

The first of the initiatives will see PwC increase transparency and clarity for employees on the way it determines bonuses and pay, with a move away from “thousands” of different bands of remuneration to simpler and more consistent pay structure better aligned with career progression – although it's unclear how the transition might affect employees currently paid above the new bands.

What should be clearer is the broadening of the firm’s bonus eligibility criteria, complemented with the creation of a ‘bonus simulator’ through which staff can calculate their potential rewards. Under the new system, PwC says that around 80 percent of its employees can now expect to receive bonuses under the new strategy, a sizable jump from around 40 per cent in previous years.

The third major component of the Total Reward Strategy will see the Big Four firm pour $15 million into the creation of a new PwC Academy in Australia, which along with offering a range leadership courses on subjects such as ESG and strategy will look to provide access to credentials from a recognised provider which could contribute to an MBA-equivalent qualification.

Lastly, the rewards overhaul is set to include enhancements to other benefits, such as offering greater scope for taking time off for physical and mental health, providing flexibility around public holidays, establishing access to a range of deals and discounts, and introducing a ‘Balanced Lifestyle Benefit’ in addition to its existing Wellness Benefit. Details will be finalised by November.

“We’ve launched our new strategy in response to staff feedback,” Seymour said. “Fixed and variable pay was ranked as their most valued reward, followed by the opportunity for career progression and professional development. We’re proud that we have been able to reward our people as a result of their continued efforts and respond to their desire for more transparency.”

PwC’s rewards revamp comes as Australia’s ongoing international border closure has meant a continued scarcity in suitably experienced accountants and consultants to take advantage of a sharp market rebound. In recent weeks, Big Four rival KPMG has introduced a ground-breaking flexible parental leave program of 26 weeks, while Deloitte has scrapped fixed in-office working hours.