PETALING JAYA: Employees expectations of bonuses and salary increments are justified in view of the “skyrocketing” cost of living, said the Malaysian Trades Union Congress (MTUC).
Its secretary-general N. Gopal Krishnan said employee productivity had improved by 6.7% over the last 10 years while wages during the same period had only risen by 2.1%.
“It is legitimate for employees to expect to be rewarded for their hard work. They are merely seeking to continue the lifestyle they are accustomed to,” he said when contacted yesterday.
Although there was global economic uncertainty at the moment, he said, the stagnant wages over the years was proof that companies had not been rewarding their workers accordingly even during strong economic conditions.
Online recruitment portal myStarjob.com manager Ivy Leong said it was only natural for employees to expect rewards for their work, but the expectations had to be realistic.
Companies, she said, should also manage their employees expectations by consistently updating their staff about the company’s performance.
“If the business growth is positive and the company is reaping profits, it should reward its employees in order to keep them happy,” she said.
Leong added that many companies were having difficulty retaining their good employees as there was stiff competition to hire the best talents.
Fomca secretary-general Datuk Paul Selvaraj said employees needed to accept the economic reality and learn to manage their finances better.
“Salaries are stagnant, but the cost of living is rising. Local policies such as the Goods and Services Tax and the global economic uncertainty are all beyond our control,” he said.
“Consumers need to think about how to better manage their spending and how they can save more.”