TRSA Members’ Entry-Level Pay Rise Exceeds Economy-Wide Standard

Staff Writer |

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — Wages for entry-level positions in TRSA (Textile Rental Services Association) member companies’ laundry operations grew faster in 2012 than pay for Americans as a whole, ranging from 1.5% for lesser-skilled positions like folding, ironing and hangering to 4.3% for more complex tasks like load-building and pressing, according to the TRSA 2012 Plant Employee Compensation Report.

Hourly pay across the spectrum of U.S. jobs increased less than 1% (0.89%) from fourth quarter 2011 to the same time in 2012. Thus, entry-level laundry positions’ median wage growth was almost twice to five times the national average. The higher-skilled segment of this group of laundry and dry cleaning roles has outpaced the workforce as a whole in this metric since 2009, according to the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics’ (BLS’) most recent data compilations.

Thirty-seven companies reported their wage and benefit practices to TRSA for the report; roughly one-third were healthcare laundry specialists, one-third were equally divided between food/beverage/hospitality and industrial uniform specialists, and the remaining one-third were mixed.

Laundry production workers who had worked in the industry for one to four years earned the highest median wage from linen specialists: $10.40 to $11.70 per hour varying with job complexity. Mixed plants had the lowest such pay ($7.75 to $9.14).

The TRSA 2012 Plant Employee Compensation Report also reflected the importance to the industry of recruiting outstanding route service personnel and ensuring customer satisfaction. Hourly base rates for such personnel with one to four years experience ranged from $13.25 to $17.49. This compares favorably with the economy-wide average of $13.22 for driver sales personnel. With incentives, the range for such TRSA drivers rises to $18 to $23.21.

Laundry production workers (roughly 40% of them) receive incentives as well; those in the 1- to 4-year experience range had overall median compensation ranging from $8.45 to $11.95.

TRSA produces the Plant Employee Compensation Report to enable association members to benchmark their pay and benefits practices, and covers the range of strategies deployed by textile service companies to take care of their people. The survey enables industry operators to compare their practices with operations similar to theirs in line of business, number of locations and sales volume.

For each position in each classification of company, an average salary or wage is listed with incentive potential and the number of companies in the survey offering such incentives. Various approaches to providing fringes are described, such as percentage of premium paid by employer, deductible and co-pay amounts, and 401(k) matching.

Copies of the TRSA 2012 Plant Employee Compensation Report are free to participating TRSA members; non-participating members and participating non-members receive a discount; others pay full price.

Package pricing is available with the TRSA 2012 Industry Performance Report, another benchmarking tool. Visit the TRSA store to learn more about the association’s reports.


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