|Figure 5. Public service premia (%) across weekly earnings distribution for Permanent Full-time Employees aged 25-59 – including size as an explanatory variable (Weighted)
The National Employment Survey is a major workplace and earnings survey conducted by the CSO (Central Statistics Office). The main results for October 2007 were published on 10th July - - see link below. Further analysis of the differences in earnings between the public and private sector is published today and the CSO says the public sector/private sector pay premium is 19.1% for public sector employees, i.e. when differences in individual and employment characteristics are controlled for.
The results show that:
- The unadjusted weekly earnings pay gap was 32.6% (€847.17 per week in the public sector compared with €639.05 in the private sector). However, these figures do not take into account the variation in characteristics of employees in both sectors.
- Sector of employment is not the only determinant of earnings; in this study, both the attributes of the employees (e.g. educational attainment, experience, hours worked etc.) and the characteristics of their employment (e.g. size of organisation) were used to further explore the wage differential between the two sectors. This analysis does not attempt to compare similar jobs between the public and private sectors.
- The analyses were carried out on both weighted and unweighted data. For comparability with the recent publication by Kelly et al (2009), the main results presented in this report were based on weighted data. It should be noted that there are issues surrounding the use of survey weights in multivariate analysis.
- The multivariate analysis of the data shows a premium of 19.1% for public sector employees, i.e. when differences in individual and employment characteristics are controlled for, public sector employees are paid on average 19.1% more than private sector employees. Further analysis based on gender yields a public sector wage premium of 14.8% for males and 22.9% for females.
- For permanent full-time employees aged 25 to 59 inclusive, the public sector premium was 12.6%, with a premium of 10.4% for males and 15.1% for females.
- Further analysis of the differential at differing points throughout the earnings distribution showed that the premium is largest at the lower end of the earnings distribution and generally decreased as earnings increased. For all employees, at the 10th percentile of earnings the premium was 25.7% but fell to 11.4% at the 90th percentile. For permanent full-time employees aged 25-59, the corresponding figures was 22% at the 10th percentile and 5.8% at the 90th percentile.
Finfacts report Sept 21, 2009: Public sector economists confirm Irish public service pay benchmarking was a sham; Premium on private pay increased dramatically from 9.7 to 21.6% between 2003 and 2006
Finfacts report July 10, 2009: Irish average earnings in 2007 were at €37,726; Pay at ESB and Bord Gáis at €71,572; Public/private gap was 48% ex-pensions