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On Wednesday, Apple said it would raise wages for corporate and retail employees later this year. The move comes amid a historically tight labor market in the US and as employees face rising inflation and the cost of living.
Apple’s move comes after Google, Amazon and Microsoft made changes to their compensation structures in recent weeks to pay workers higher to retain and attract talent.
“Supporting and retaining the best team members in the world allows us to deliver the best, most innovative products and services to our customers,” an Apple representative said in a statement. “This year, as part of our annual performance review, we are increasing our overall compensation budget.”
Apple will also increase the starting salary of its retail employees in the US to $22 an hour, up from $20. Apple said that stores in some regions may have a higher starting price.
The increase in retail wages comes as Apple faces retail unions across the country demanding higher wages. Employees at a store in Atlanta, Georgia will vote in June whether to organize with the Media Foundation of America.
Inflation hit 8.3% in April, the fastest pace in more than 40 years, while the unemployment rate remained as low as 3.6%. The combination of these factors has motivated many workers, especially in demanding sectors like technology, to seek better wages or more flexible conditions at other companies.
There are some signs that the hot job market for tech workers may be slowing down in response to market conditions. Facebook, Snap and Nvidia recently said they would slow hiring to keep costs under control due to market conditions.
Apple remains a cash-rich giant, with revenue growing 34% in 2021 to more than $297 billion with a 43% gross margin.