Salaries for executives at multi-site organizations in the nonprofit aging services sector continue to trend upward, according to the latest numbers.

Overall in 2017, chief executives earned 4.98% more in base compensation than the previous year, according to a new survey commissioned by LeadingAge. That’s a little less than the 6.41% increase in 2016 and brought the national median base salary for CEOs up to $332,000.

The top financial executive/CFO position rose 5.8%, top marketing executive 4.0% and top human resources executive 5.26%. Information covered 17 job titles.

Across all executive positions surveyed, salaries increased by 4.7% overall, which matches the 4.7% increase the previous year.

That rise seems relatively modest, compared to salary increases seen in other healthcare sectors, though the data does not include incentive pay, noted Mario McKenzie, a partner with CliftonLarsonAllen, which conducted the survey. Compensation for execs in the publicly traded senior services sector is much higher.

“A pretty good portion of these folks do receive incentive pay, so it’s hard to really gauge if they’re doing well or not,” McKenzie said. “There’s obviously an element of pay tied to performance, but I would say, when you read articles about other sectors paying their CEOs, I would probably agree that the increase, overall, is reasonable.”

Since this salary survey started about 19 years ago, CEO salaries for multi-site organizations have grown by about 153%. Meanwhile, cash compensation has grown by about 159%, which is attributable to the increasing use of cash incentives to reward executives, according to the researchers.

LeadingAge officials urge long-term care professionals to stay abreast of this data to remain competitive in executive recruitment and retention. Information in the report was designed for use by boards and other hiring bodies.

“More than ever, our nonprofit providers must remain competitive in our field, which faces many workforce challenges,” LeadingAge President and CEO Katie Smith Sloan said in a press release. “The data from the Executive Compensation Study can help ensure that organizations remain current with benchmarks for compensation in the field as they work to advance their missions.”

Survey data was gathered during the summer months and used figures available through May 1, 2017. The report included data rom 108 organizations representing 1,300 executives.