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The average base salary for C-suite executives has dropped by 8.8% year-on-year, but those in director-level roles have seen their compensation increase an average of 4.6% in the same period.
According to the BlueSteps Executive Compensation Report, 41.8% of executives who did see an increase in total compensation between 2012 and 2013 said this was between 1% to 5%, while 26.6% said it was an increase of 6% to 10%. Only 10% of respondents said they received an increment of more than 20%.
Globally, the average C-suite executive received an annual base salary of US$254,276 this year, with a majority of them (24%) earning between US$201,000 and US$250,000.
As for those not in C-suite roles, base salaries went up to an average of US$210,477 this year, and the largest percentage (30%) earned an average of between US$151,000 and US$200,000.
The survey, which collected responses from 778 executives, also found 66.8% of executives were more motivated by long-term incentives, and 88.1% preferred cash bonuses over shares.
It also found global executives consider a flexible work schedule as the most valuable work-life benefit offered by organisations. More than half of respondents (54%) indicated that offering as “highly valuable”, ahead of others such as home working or telecommuting (41%), a fitness programme (29%) and time off as a result of overtime (25%).