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Promotion, but no salary increase? Why dry promotion is trending nowadays?

Imagine: Your nameplate on the door changes, but your salary doesn’t — It's like giving someone a bigger hat, but not a bigger head to wear it!

Written by  Jasleen Kaur -- April 15th 2024 01:40 PM -- Updated: April 15th 2024 01:57 PM
Promotion, but no salary increase? Why dry promotion is trending nowadays?

Promotion, but no salary increase? Why dry promotion is trending nowadays?

New job trend:  Are you also a victim of dry promotion? The job market has always been full of surprises, from working remotely in 'pajamas' to sharing workspaces with strangers. But there's a new job trend that’s quietly making waves and might leave you scratching your head: “dry promotion.”

So, what exactly is dry promotion? Imagine your boss giving you a shiny new job title, more work to do, and added responsibilities, but without increasing your paycheck. Yep, your nameplate on the door changes, but your salary doesn’t. It's like giving someone a bigger hat, but not a bigger head to wear it.


A recent study by compensation consultant Pearl Meyer found that more than 13% of employers are opting to give employees new titles instead of raises. That’s a noticeable increase from just 8% in 2018, as reported by The Wall Street Journal. A separate survey of 900 companies by benefits-advisory firm Mercer found that companies are planning to allocate less of their 2024 salary budgets for promotions compared to 2023.


Understandably, many employees aren’t exactly jumping for joy over this new job trend. Experts suggest this growing practice reflects a decline in workers’ bargaining power. Dry promotions often pop up during tough economic times when companies want to cut costs.

In the past, companies facing labour shortages had to offer solid raises to keep their employees around. But now, with dry promotions, some employers are shuffling the duties of laid-off workers onto the plates of existing staff without any pay increase. It’s like being handed an extra slice of cake but told you can’t actually eat it.

Social media has seen employees sharing their stories of these dry promotions. One Reddit user mentioned that their boss said they were doing the work of a more senior employee, so they decided to drop “junior” from their job title. When the user asked about their salary, the boss replied, “Not changing—keep your wallet closed.”

Some fellow Redditors offered sage advice: “The only thing a better title will do with no additional money is help you find a better job somewhere else.” Another quipped, “If you stay, they’ll only give you tiny raises until you find yourself below market rate in five or six years.”

For those not ready to switch jobs, others suggested asking for alternative perks, like flexible schedules or extra paid time off, to make up for the lack of a raise.

So, next time you get that fancy new title, keep an eye on your paycheck. If it stays the same, it might be time to consider your options. And remember, while a promotion without a raise can be a tricky situation, it does come with one benefit: a great conversation starter at the next office party!

- PTC NEWS

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