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Regional employer survey shows local wage growth accelerating

posted on July 20, 2018

The recently completed the 2018 Western & Central Wisconsin Wage Survey has revealed a 3.70% overall increase in its group of 35 benchmark jobs, an acceleration of last year’s increase of 2.99%.

The increase is an “indicator of positive wage growth and robust market conditions,” notes Deborah Marshall, Senior Manager, HR Consulting, at Wipfli in Eau Claire, who serves as the lead technical advisor for the survey. “Although there are always variations in numbers reported due to different employers participating (or not participating) and individual job fluctuations, the ‘overall’ number is still a fairly reliable statistic. Accordingly, actual average pay increase percentages awarded were up from last year as well.”

In its 19th year, the survey results were compiled from submissions by 151 companies in various industries, in an area encompassing the coverage area of the Chambers of Commerce in Chippewa Falls, Eau Claire, La Crosse, Marshfield, Menomonie, Portage County, Rice Lake, Wausau, and Wisconsin Rapids. Also involved were local chapters of the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) in the Chippewa Valley, La Crosse, Wausau and Winona, MN. The survey is administered by the Eau Claire Area Chamber of Commerce.

Employers in central Wisconsin were included for the first time this year, resulting in a 25% increase in the number of participating organizations. Base pay levels for over 18,000 employees were included in the survey, on 150 different job titles. Manufacturers represented 43% of the employers and 50% of the rates of pay in the survey, up significantly from last year. The survey also has industry breakouts for healthcare, financial institutions, non-profits, and a general category for all other types of organizations.

The full survey results are available to employers for purchase at the Eau Claire Chamber. A copy of the survey will be available at the Eau Claire Public Library. Participating members of the Chambers of Commerce and SHRM chapters receive a copy at a reduced price. The order for is available online at:–central-wisconsin-wage-survey.html or contact Casey Schumacher at or 715-834-0614.

Western Central Wisconsin Wage Survey Full Press Release