Remuneration and reward systems during an economic crisis: case study from Attica region, Greece


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This study investigated the structure of employees’ remuneration and rewards systems, focusing on medium- and large-sized firms in the region of Attica in Greece during the economic crisis. Data were collected using a structured questionnaire based on relevant literature. A sample of 150 companies filled out a total of 500 questionnaires. The results revealed that medium- and large-sized companies applied various remuneration systems, including the base wage, performance-related bonuses, and a combination of additional non-wage benefits. Greek firms did not avoid wage cut in times of low turnover, although hypotheses testing revealed no relationship between firm size and the use of flexible remuneration systems. However, a positive relationship between the unions’ engagement and the use of non-wage cutting strategies was confirmed. Furthermore, a positive correlation between wage rigidity, labor market legislation, and collective agreements for setting minimum wage levels was found. Finally, a hypothesis test regarding the association between the firm, the business sector, and wages cut over the last seven years was accepted. The study concludes that wages cut should be the final choice by firms since remuneration is a source to satisfy, engage, and attract employees.

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    • Figure 1. Scree plot
    • Figure 2. ANOVA means plot
    • Table 1. Demographic characteristics of firms
    • Table 2. Reasons that refrain firms from cutting wages to reduce labor costs
    • Table 3. Flexible benefits to employees per professional category
    • Table 4. Percentage of employees in a company who have experienced wage cut over the last seven years
    • Table 5. Incidence of wage cuts
    • Table 6. Firms’ reaction to an unanticipated slowdown in demand
    • Table 7. Descriptive statistics for the strategies that firms select to reduce labor costs
    • Table 8. KMO and Bartlett’s test
    • Table 9. Factor analysis of the strategies to reduce labor costs
    • Table 10. Correlations between firm size and use of non-wage methods
    • Table 11. Test statisticsa for the presence of unions and non-wage cost-cutting strategies
    • Table 12. ANOVA results
    • Table 13. Correlations between firm size and internal reasons
    • Data curation
      Stamatios Ntanos, Georgios Sidiropoulos
    • Investigation
      Stamatios Ntanos, Grigorios L. Kyriakopoulos
    • Methodology
      Stamatios Ntanos, Georgios Sidiropoulos
    • Project administration
      Stamatios Ntanos
    • Writing – review & editing
      Stamatios Ntanos, Grigorios L. Kyriakopoulos
    • Formal Analysis
      Georgios Sidiropoulos, Evangelia Triantafyllou
    • Writing – original draft
      Georgios Sidiropoulos, Evangelia Triantafyllou
    • Conceptualization
      Evangelia Triantafyllou, Miltiadis Chalikias
    • Visualization
      Evangelia Triantafyllou, Miltiadis Chalikias
    • Supervision
      Miltiadis Chalikias, Grigorios L. Kyriakopoulos
    • Validation
      Miltiadis Chalikias, Grigorios L. Kyriakopoulos