The Cupertino, California-based company announced in an email to employees Wednesday that it would increase its compensation budget and raise wages for employees at businesses and retailers across the country, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The tech company would increase the starting hourly wage for retail employees to $22 an hour, an increase of $20 an hour, notes CNBC. The salary increases could take effect as early as July and will only apply to employees in the United States.

Apple is the latest big tech company to increase its pay amid record inflation and the fight for tech talent.

Apple's move follows other big tech companies, including Amazon, Google and Microsoft, in reviewing employee pay. Wages in the tech sector, even for top talent, are rising as companies compete for a small population of skilled workers. US employers posted 1.1 million tech jobs in the first quarter of 2022, a 43% increase from a year earlier, notes the Wall Street Journal.

Reviews:- official site Apple is hiking hourly pay for retail employees to $22 an hour. Corporate workers are getting a boost, too.

In February, Amazon doubled its maximum base salary from $160,000 to $350,000, citing an "unusually competitive job market" and "the need to remain competitive to attract and retain top talent." And this month, Microsoft announced that it was doubling its budget for merit pay raises.

Google is also reviewing its compensation policies and considering salary increases, CNBC reports, after Google employees complained about low pay compared to other big tech companies, including Apple. Other tech companies are slowing down or even freezing hiring due to rising labor costs.

Apple's announcement on Wednesday follows earlier decisions by the tech company to increase pay and benefits for retail staff. In February, Apple told employees that it planned to offer more paid vacation and sick leave to retail employees, including part-timers.

Apple retail workers have complained about working conditions at Apple Stores before and during the pandemic. Workers have been frustrated with long shifts and poor company messaging, as well as the damage to their mental health due to long hours working from home during the COVID pandemic, according to an investigation by The Verge published Tuesday. last year.

Like other high-end outlets, Apple employees are getting organized.

On Wednesday, workers at an Apple store in Louisville became the fourth group to launch a union campaign, after those at stores in Atlanta; New York; and Townson, Maryland.

On the same day, Deirdre O'Brien, Apple's head of distribution, warned against these initiatives. “I am concerned about what it would mean to put another organization in the middle of our relationship,” she told employees in a video.

Apple wouldn't be the only company to raise wages amid calls for a union. On May 3, Starbucks announced that it would raise wages at company-owned stores, but not at stores that had unionized or were in the process of unionizing.