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Wage & Benefits

Wage and Benefit Survey Results Suggest Moderate Growth in 2019 for Hudson Valley Manufacturers


The Council of Industry and Marist College’s Bureau of Economic Research and School of Management along with Ethan Allen Workforce Solutions have compiled and analyzed the results from the 2018 Annual Wage and Benefits survey of Hudson Valley manufacturing companies. Twenty-five companies participated in the survey this year with a combined total of 2,869 reported employees.

Wage Trends

2018 wage increases among participating companies averaged 3.1% for the management group, 2.9% for the professional group, 3.2% for the administrative/clerical group, 2.7% for the technical group, 3.2% for the manufacturing/production group, and 3.4% for the sales group. These were in line with the pay increases observed nationally, which came in at 3.1%.

Planned increases for 2019 are 2.9% for the management group, 2.7% for the professional group, 2.8% for the administrative/clerical group, 2.7% for the technical group, 2.7% for the manufacturing/production group, and 2.8% for the sales group. Nationally, pay increases for 2019 are projected to be 3.2%.

 Hiring Plans

72% of respondents indicated that they are looking to do new hiring in 2019, and the vast majority (96%) indicated that they are not looking to reduce their workforce in 2019. Most new hires made in 2018 were in the manufacturing and technical groups. Approximately 35% of respondents indicated that they had positions that went unfilled in 2018. Among the positions that were reportedly difficult to fill are: Machinist Positions, Assembler, Entry Level Production, Converting Operator, Machine Operator, CNC/Manual Machinist, Industrial Maintenance Mechanic, and Sales/Product Development.

“Hiring – especially for skilled workers is an ongoing challenge for our members and these survey results confirm that fact,” said Johnnieanne Hansen, Director of Workforce Development for the Council of Industry. “We are hopeful that several initiatives we have undertaken in the past year, including our Collaborative Recruiting Program (  and our Apprentice Program will have a positive impact in 2019.  We’re working to help our members find and train the workers they need.”

 Hudson Valley Manufacturers are working with the Council of Industry on several initiatives to address the challenge of finding quality candidates to fill open positions. 52% of respondents reported that they utilize the Council of Industry’s Collaborative Recruiting Effort. 48% of respondents do not. This initiative was put in place to help our members who are struggling to fill the previously mentioned positions.

 Health Coverage

All participating companies reported providing health care coverage for their employees, and that employee health care premiums are paid on a pre-tax basis. 21 respondents provide Dental Coverage, 20 provide a Vision/Optical Plan, and 21 provide an HSA or HRA.

Council of Industry President Harold King says, “The survey results confirm that manufacturing jobs in the region continue to provide good wages and benefits. We also see some upward pressure on wages most likely resulting from a tight labor market.”

The Council of Industry has been the manufacturer’s association of the Hudson Valley since 1910. Our membership includes manufacturers and businesses related to the manufacturing industry throughout Southeastern New York. We are a privately funded not-for-profit organization, whose mission is to promote the success of our member firms and their employees, and through them contribute to the success of the Hudson Valley Community. We provide access to training, networking opportunities, advocacy and discounts of products and services for our members.

This is the tenth wage and salary survey since a resumption of the collaboration between the Council of Industry of Southeastern New York and Marist College’s Bureau of Economic Research (BER) and the School of Management, and the fifth year that it is being co-sponsored by Ethan Allen Workforce Solutions.

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Recruiting Reboot and Wage & Benefits Data

Workforce has been one of the top issues for our members recently. The Council of Industry has put together an HR Network meeting to help with recruitment and we are conducting our annual Wage & Benefit Survey to help members see where their numbers fall in comparison to others in the Hudson Valley.

We have set up a presentation to help you update and upgrade your recruiting process with Recruitment Reboot a presentation by Rebecca Mazin from Recruit Right. Rebecca is also the instructor of some of our most popular Certificate in Manufacturing Leadership classes: Fundamentals of Leadership, Business Communication, and Positive Motivation & Discipline. She will identify tools and tips to change your approach to recruitment with the potential to attract the talent you are looking for. The meeting is free for all Council of Industry Members and will be held on November 2, at our offices at The Desmond Campus of Mount St. Mary College in Newburgh. Please register online so we know who will be attending:

The CI Wage & Benefit Survey is well underway but there is still time for you to participate. With the help of Marist College’s Dr. Ken Sloan, Ethan Allen Personnel Group, The Council of Industry has developed a Wage and Benefits survey which provides meaningful results while at the same time is easy to complete. Email Johnnieanne Hansen at for a survey link or questions.

Participation in the survey is critical to its usefulness. The more companies that participate the more valuable and reliable the data will be. As the market for manufacturing workers at all levels becomes tighter the data generated from this survey becomes increasingly important.

  • Position Descriptions can be downloaded and contain the benchmark descriptions to use in matching your positions to the proper survey entry.
  • Wage data should be reported as of September 30, 2018 (or as close to that date as is possible) to insure comparability of reported statistics. Wage data can be entered as hourly, weekly, monthly or annually.
  • The survey is set up so that you can save and complete later so that you do not need to finish the entire survey at one time.
  • Completed surveys should be submitted by November 9th.
  • Results should be available early December.


Help Us – Help You… Join our ad-hoc Survey Committee to help restructure and plan the 2019 wage and benefit survey and explore other survey topics to help meet YOUR needs. Click here to learn more and sign up for our committee meeting.

Full Results will be shared only with Council member companies that submit surveys.

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