Wages and salaries and labour costs
For work, people receive pay, or wages and salaries, which is agreed compensation for fulfilling work tasks. In addition to the sum that the employer pays to the employee, the employer pays labour taxes on that sum, which together with the wages constitute labour costs.
Wages are an important source of income, and their main purpose is to cover expenses on dwelling, food, transportation and other basic needs. This is why the law regulates the minimum an employee could be paid for full-time work. The minimum wage is set to protect the well-being of employees.
The statistics on wages and salaries and labour costs provide the following information:
- what are the average monthly and hourly gross wages in different economic activities;
- how much the wages differ in counties;
- whether jobs with higher pay are in the private or public sector;
- what are hourly wages of employees by occupation, economic activity, level of education, age group, length of employment or type of contract;
- what are the components of employers’ costs on employees and what is the share of each of these in the total costs;
- how many vacant posts there are in Estonia, and how many people have changed jobs;
- how many labour strikes have taken place in Estonia, how long these lasted, and how many people participated;
- how wide is the gender pay gap in different economic activities.
Statistics on wages and salaries are used to measure labour productivity, observe trends, assess changes in the labour market and make decisions on the national economy.