Some employers continue to face challenges in attracting and retaining staff, with competitive pay emerging as a crucial factor. While wages aren’t the sole determinant, offering a fair and competitive salary is essential for enhancing a company’s appeal. Recently, a member in the manufacturing sector disclosed losing employees to a popular fast-food chain, which was offering $4 per hour more in pay. They were unaware that their wages were not competitive until they started losing employees.

Unfortunately, many employers still rely on outdated practices for wage determination. Traditionally, candidates were often asked about their current salary, and the employer would either match or exceed it Similarly, some companies adopted a blanket approach of providing annual cost-of-living raises irrespective of market rates or employee experience. Over time, these loyal employees are underpaid compared to others in the market. They eventually leave for more money, feeling unappreciated and disgruntled.

These two scenarios are responsible for some of the pay disparity we see, because wages weren’t set correctly from the start. These disparities hit minorities and women the most, although most employees who work for a company who makes the wages up as they go tend to be underpaid. This is part of the reason pay transparency laws are passed.

In Nevada, Senate Bill 293 (SB293) was passed during the 2021 legislative session. The law prohibits, among other things, employers from asking for salary history to determine how much they will pay the candidate.

Setting competitive wages involves various considerations, including FLSA status, job responsibilities, education, experience, and demographics, such as the location, business size, sales, and profitability. Benchmarking against industry standards is a common practice. This information can be found in a myriad of ways, from looking at popular websites like Glassdoor or comparing job posts. But caution is advised when using unverified sources as they won’t always provide a true picture. Salary surveys are the most reputable method of gathering pay data to set wages. Wage information is verified, current and the best pay survey models also include comparisons, based on company demographics. This is how you know you are providing your employees with the most competitive pay and set yourself up for hiring success.

Recognizing the significance of accurate pay data, NAE has upgraded our survey platform to Payscale Peer. This online platform gathers regional and national data on over 5,000 benchmark positions, boasting a nationwide participation of nearly 2,500 contributors, representing over 7 million employees. Participating in this service through NAE membership enables employers to establish and maintain competitive wages, ultimately attracting top talent.

For detailed information about Payscale Peer, please visit our website. Should you have any questions, feel free to reach out to us at or call 775-329-4241.