Design Week’s survey reveals salary trends

Salary rises for designers working outside London have been more than double those enjoyed by their counterparts in the capital over the past year, according to Design Week’s annual survey of pay scales at design groups.

London traditionally outstrips the regions in terms of salary rises, but figures compiled from leading recruitment agencies suggest that, in the 12 months to September, non-London creatives secured increases of 8-11 per cent. London salaries across all disciplines, meanwhile, barely edged above inflation in most cases.

Design industry analysts have long maintained that staff costs run too far ahead of fee-income. It is not clear from the research whether London consultancies have factored a response to falling revenues into their payroll this year, while regional consultancies are yet to take action.

The only anomaly to this trend is at managing director level where salaries paid outside London fell 17 per cent, while London-based managing directors’ pay increased by 4 per cent.

Design managers and account executives have generally been rewarded with healthy percentage increases, though new business directors – both within and outside London – have seen their basic salaries fall.

Senior employees at interiors and architectural groups are also receiving above average salaries.

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