The tech giant said it would boost its minimum starting hourly pay rate for workers to $22 – an increase of 10% compared to last year. Initial hourly pay could be higher in select regions, according to the company.
Starting salaries for Apple’s corporate workers are also reportedly expected to increase.
“Supporting and retaining the best team members in the world enables us to deliver the best, most innovative, products and services for our customers,” an Apple spokesman said in a statement obtained by the Wall Street Journal. “This year as part of our annual performance review process, we’re increasing our overall compensation budget.”
An Apple representative did not immediately return a request for further comment.
With the nationwide unemployment rate hovering at just 3.6%, companies across various sectors are scrambling to keep workers happy through pay bumps and other perks. Job openings hit a record 11.55 million in March and the number of Americans quitting their jobs also reached an all-time high.
Apple and other companies are also aiming to keep worker compensation in line with inflation, which reached 8.3% in April and has remained high even as the Federal Reserve enacts interest rate hikes to bring down prices.
Apple’s announcement followed a similar move by Microsoft, which said it would nearly double its compensation budget this year.
Apple revealed its plans to hike pay as retail workers at stores in states such as Georgia and New York move forward with efforts to unionize. In February, Apple confirmed it would offer more vacation time and sick days for its retail workers after some grumbled about their benefits.
Last month, organizers at Apple’s store in New York City’s Grand Central Terminal said they had voted to become an affiliate of the labor group Workers United and were gathering signatures to form a union. The group said they were seeking a minimum hourly wage of $30 for all workers.
At the time, an Apple spokesperson noted the minimum hourly rate for retail workers was $20, reflecting the company’s old pay scale. Apple operates more than 270 retail stores in the US and has tens of thousands of retail workers.
And earlier this month, Apple said it would delay a requirement that its corporate employees work onsite at least three days a week. Some workers had reportedly pushed back on the return-to-office push.