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York County Economic Development Reports Results of 2022 Wage and Benefit Survey

For Immediate Release:
July 15, 2022

York County Economic Development Reports results of 2022 Wage and Benefit Survey
Average hourly wage for local industry up 10%

YORK COUNTY, SC – Thanks to record participation by local industry, York County Economic Development recently reported the results of its 2022 Wage and Benefit Survey. This annual survey captured crucial workforce data including wages, benefits and training initiatives of more than 78 companies throughout York County.

The data collected represented more than 14,000 employees in the manufacturing, distribution and warehouse industries. The survey categorized wage information for exempt and non-exempt workers, including those temporary and contract employment.

Some of the notable findings in the 2022 survey included a 9% increase in the average entry level wage, now standing at $16.04 per hour. The average non-exempt/hourly wage for unskilled/semi-skilled workers had risen 10%, standing at $18.36 per hour, and the average non-exempt/hourly wage for skilled or technical employees had risen 4%, bringing it to $22.86 per hour.

Respondent companies reported that the annual wage increase for all workers had increased 3.5% for the current period – its highest level since the survey’s inception in 2017.
Additional data captured some hiring and retention strategies.

Nearly 73% of industries are now offering bonus or profit sharing incentives, while 62% are offering employee referral bonuses, and another 13% offering signing bonuses ranging from $1,000 to $5,000.

The top three reasons for turnover reported by survey respondents were, in order, employees finding higher wages elsewhere, policy violations, followed by overworked. As a whole, company-wide turnover was up 17%.

The results were recently presented in person at a York County Human Resource Roundtable event hosted by York County Economic Development (YCED) and the South Carolina Manufacturing Extension Partnership (SCMEP). Attendees were made up of designated representatives from local industry who had also participated in the survey.

During the discussion, professionals shared suggestions and trends they are seeing with their own workforce, including expanded benefits to create value for employees. Some of the added benefits shared at the roundtable included such things as added paid paternity and maternity leave, an increase in sick time allowed, flexible work schedules, paid volunteer hours, and enhancements to employee meal options.

A participant in the survey each year, James Taylor, Talent Acquisition Specialist for Koppers Performance Chemicals, reflected on the survey and discussion.

“Each year, this survey has been used to support salary and wage adjustments when discussing operational expenses with my division’s leadership. We use this data, coupled with the information from other attendees, such as regional and local workforce providers, as a means to formulate a strategy for recruiting candidates to fill our increasing staffing needs as our business grows.”

Taylor added, “The York County team also led group discussions on recruiting, retention, and employee engagement topics. These discussions allowed us to express our current company recruitment issues and the best practices we use to target applicants. I went back to my plant to see if the things others were doing could help in our journey of getting our roles filled.”

The Annual Wage & Benefit Survey, conducted by York County Economic Development, is in its fifth year. This survey is provided as a service to local manufacturing, distribution and warehouse operations in the county. The comprehensive survey has grown in recent years to include more detailed information as it relates to workforce training and benefits offered by companies in order to recruit and retain employees.


About York County Economic Development:
York County Economic Development (YCED) is the lead organization responsible for recruiting businesses, retaining and growing existing firms, and promoting and marketing York County. YCED also assists in strategic initiatives across York County that are focused on product development, workforce development, infrastructure improvements and quality of life.

Media Contact:
Caroline Floyd |


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