Between 2009 and 2014, Québec government employees’ position in terms of salaries and total compensation weakened in relation to other Québec employees, but remained stable compared with the private sector

Montréal, November 27, 2014 – The salaries of Québec government employees,1 calculated based on the benchmark jobs studied, are 11.5% lower in 2014 than those of other Québec employees working in enterprises employing 200 persons or more. They are also lower than the salaries of employees in the private sector by 8.4%. With regard to total compensation, which includes salaries, benefits, and hours at work, Québec government employees are behind other Québec employees as a whole by 7.6%. However, they are on a par with their private-sector counterparts. These are among of the findings of the report entitled Rémunération des salariés. État et évolution comparés 2014, made public today by the Institut de la statistique du Québec.

The Québec government is in a more favourable position for total compensation than for salaries because of a shorter normal workweek and more paid time off (holidays). Thus, Québec government employees have fewer hours at work (obtained by subtracting paid time off from normal working hours). Costs for benefits in the Québec government, at 25.2% of salaries, are lower than those of other Québec employers as a whole (28.8%), but are statistically similar to those in the private sector (24.8%).

The differentials are calculated based on 77 benchmark jobs representative of the Québec government employee structure and comparable to those in the different segments of the labour market. The jobs used are distributed among five categories: professionals, technicians, office employees, service employees, and manual workers. The benchmark jobs in the technician and office employee categories respectively account for 25% and 38% of the total number of Québec government employees covered by the comparison.

The Québec government’s comparative situation remained stable between 2013 and 2014 in relation to other Québec employees as a whole and to the private sector, in terms of both salaries and total compensation.

However, since 2009, Québec government employees’ comparative situation has weakened in relation to other Québec employees. The salary gap was wider in 2014 than in 2009, expanding from – 8.7% to – 11.5% over five years. The same is true for total compensation, as the differential increased from – 3.7% in 2009 to – 7.6% in 2014. Compared to the private sector, the situation of Québec government employees remained stable between 2009 and 2014 in terms of both salaries and total compensation.

Weaker projections for the year 2015 because of inflation

Based on the collective agreements filed with the Ministère du Travail and surveys by salary forecasting firms, the Institut predicts that Québec employees as a whole will benefit from average salary-scale increases of 1.9% in 2014 and 2.0% in 2015. Unionized employees should see a higher rate of increase in 2015 than in 2014 (2.2% versus 2.0%). Non unionized employees are expected to obtain an increase of 1.9% for both years. According to available inflation forecasts (1.4% in 2014 and 1.7% in 2015), Québec employees as a whole should see a gain in purchasing power for both years, but it is expected to be greater in 2014 (0.5 percentage points versus 0.3 points).


1. This sector includes the Québec public service and the public education and health and social services networks. Public bodies, for example government corporations, are excluded. They are part of the “government business enterprises” sector.


  • Nadège Jean
    Coordinator, compensation studies
    Direction des statistiques du travail et de la rémunération
    Phone: 514-876-4384, Ext. 6224
  • Sylvain Carrier
    Communications Advisor
    Phone: 418-691-2403, Ext. 3329
    Cell: 418-655-2411
  • Information and Documentation Centre
    Phone: 418-691-2401
    or 1-800-463-4090 (toll free in Canada and the United States)
  • Twitter account: