Why we made the Australian salary calculator available to you
Posted on June 28, 2019
If you are familiar with the Salary Coach website, you’ll see the Australian Salary Calculator emblazoned on the menu for all to see. It’s something that I have manually used for decades to demonstrate the impact of unlocking your earning potential to many a client.
In the far-off distant future is retirement. We look at salaries in a matter-of-fact way of seeing whether they will pay our way. We expect to shift from one position to another and to see an increase in money or prestige.
Yet we never stop to think about the accumulation of financial security and the benefits in a medium or long-term plan. That’s where the Australian salary calculator comes in
What is the aim of the Salary Coach’s Australian salary calculator?
The aim of the salary calculator is to quickly and effectively translate your future into numbers you can use. What I have been putting in front of my clients for years is their potential. You look at the potential increase in earnings in relation to your super.
It takes you to the heart of the matter when it comes to super and retirement by looking at:
- Your earnings
- The potential savings that will result under the Australian superannuation scheme
- How many years you have to grow those savings
- How they translate into your future retirement plans
It also accounts for salary increases you may receive.
This is a sobering exercise for most people. W e assume that if we keep socking away our super, life when we retire will be sweet. Yet it isn’t until you see the impact of even modest impacts on what you accumulate over time that many see the value in taking super and savings seriously.
This is what the Australian salary calculator helps you visualise.
Why aren’t we already doing this?
When we start work as fresh-faced 20 somethings, we’re often uncovering what our version of meeting our needs means. Things like rent, moving out of home or out of share house accommodation, progressing the diet from university days of noodles to something a little healthier and sustaining, saving to travel, exploring arts and culture, and updating aspects of our life are the primary concerns.
What I mean by that is getting new work clothes, finding identities and expressing that through interests, getting new furniture, maybe getting a new bicycle or car and shifting away from the university, TAFE and post-school days by developing taste and style. It’s above moving from hand me down kitchen tables and childhood beds to something of our own in a lot of cases.
That pay cheque you get is warmly received in most cases. It means freedom and it means doing more than making do in most cases. There’s very little reflection on how to improve that situation until we move from one company to another. Or chase an internal promotion. And even then, questioning what we get paid usually isn’t on our radar.
This continues into your 30s. The goals may expand to include family, homeownership, business ventures and more. But so too do the cost of these dreams escalate.
Won’t everyone be in the same boat, so it doesn’t matter?
The answer is no. The way the world is costed out doesn’t reset if the next generation is being paid less. The price remains with the market. And the market is currently dominated by Baby Boomers who have a lot of assets and cash that you as a new worker do not.
And you may never see if you don’t act now.
Look around you and assess the challenges you currently face. The housing market, the cost of living in places like Sydney and Melbourne, and the savings you accrue all determine your success day-to-day.
Now look at future you.
You may be looking to get married, raise a family, buy your own home, travel the world, start a side business, change careers or return to study.
All these things are made easier through having more money paid to you over time.
Parenting takes us away from work and adds additional costs and management stress. You may have to manage a physical disability or a mental health condition. Maybe, you simply don’t want to work fulltime.
How do you expect to offset the earnings absent during these times?
Now, look even further still into the future.
Retirement is big business. It costs money to downsize into apartments. Aged care costs are not cheap. Your super is also a safety net against accident and hardship.
We don’t know what will happen with fundamental services like childcare, health provision or the pension in future. In only this decade, the retirement age has been lifted from 65 to 67 and there is talk of pushing it to 70.
The government is pushing people to create their own safety nets for a reason. And it’s better to be prepared for all eventualities than ignore the potential changes that may result.
Beyond the future, acting now helps
Using the salary calculator demonstrates the value I have raised for clients as well as the individual value you can find for yourself. It has a focus on retirement, but the lesson still applies to the present.
The more raindrops you place in a bucket, the quicker the bucket fills. And the more your bucket fills, the more you can slake the thirst for the kind of working life you want.