Employees in the UK will receive one of the lowest pay rises in the world with the average coming to just 1.5 per cent.

That is according to research by management consultancy firm Hay Group, which has revealed that Britain’s businesses are being hit hard by the recession.

The results reveal that this is a downward trend, as the statistics are worse than in November last year.

Colin Evans, UK head of reward services at the Hay Group, suggested that cutting staff was not the answer.

He said: "There is huge pressure on organisations to cut staffing costs quickly. But the focus on short-term measures, particularly reducing headcount, may jeopardise the UK’s ability to bounce back come the eventual upturn."

Ruth Spellman, chief executive of the Chartered Management Institute, recently stated that it was important companies understood the value of investing in their staff.

She said that by developing employees’ skills, organisations would be "well placed" when the economy recovers.