Compensation and Benefits… An Important Combination When Attracting and Retaining Talented Staff

HFTP 2018 Compensation & Benefits Survey

Figuring out the right combination of compensation and benefits is the key to attracting and retaining top talent within your organization. Since 2002, the HFTP Americas Research Center has been tracking trends and publishing the HFTP Compensation and Benefits Survey. The purpose of this survey is to assist industry executives in their daily functions, whether it be setting compensation levels, budgeting for the following year, or analyzing staffing levels.

It is time again to complete this definitive survey for hospitality finance and technology professionals. With your input, the 2018 HFTP Compensation and Benefits Survey will continue to be the authoritative resource for the industry.

Please take the time to complete the survey.

The following provides a glimpse at the data over the years.

Average Compensation
As expected, overall compensation has trended upward over the years, from a total of $80,000 in 2002 to $130,000 reported in 2016. It is interesting to note that deferred compensation and bonus levels were higher in 2006 causing the overall compensation to peak.Average Compensation

The basis for bonus determination has shifted over the years to being less profit based. In the 2014 and 2016 surveys, respondents indicated the top bonus determinants were meeting budgeted goals and board or general manager discretion.Bonus Determination

The benefits offered by the greatest number of organizations throughout the years has remained consistent, with meals at the facility, business travel allowance, and golf taking the top spots. A new addition to the 2018 survey are employment perks such as flexible schedules, vacation allowances, company social events, and compressed work schedules. These are emerging trends in other industries and it will be interesting to see if they have taken hold in the hospitality industry.Benefits

Number of Employees
The survey goes beyond compensation and benefits, and also gathers information on staffing levels. Tracking the trends through the years, which are presented in the following tables, provides a glimpse at the changing tide in accounting and IT departments. Accounting and finance departments have ebbed and flowed through the years, but the majority of organizations still employ between two and five employees. In IT, the number of properties outsourcing this function is evident in the number of IT staff employed in-house. In 2002, 14.2 percent of respondents indicated they had no in-house IT staff; and, in 2016, that number had risen to 55.3 percent.

Number of Employees

Again, please help HFTP maintain this valuable record of data by responding to the 2018 survey:

2018 HFTP Compensation and Benefits Survey

For further information about the HFTP Compensation and Benefits Survey contact Tanya Venegas (, executive director of the HFTP Americas Research Center.

Tanya Venegas, MBA, MHM, CHIA is the executive director at the HFTP Americas Research Center at the Conrad N. Hilton College of Hotel and Restaurant Management at the University of Houston. Contact Tanya via email at or via phone at +1 (713) 743-1839.

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About the Author: Tanya Venegas