What will it take to get an experienced worker to apply for your job opening? According to survey data from the New York Fed, the magic salary number is $72,873 for the average American. That's a jump of nearly $4,000 from a year ago, and around $8,600 higher than the threshold before the pandemic.

That means if you're looking to hire you should ask around to make sure the salaries you're offering are competitive. And to retain the talent you have, it's also worth checking that your team members are well compensated.

The New York Fed asks a series of questions related to salary expectations three times a year as part of the Survey of Consumer Expectations, including on the topic of people's expectations for the wages they'd accept to switch jobs--what is referred to as the reservation wage. Data is available going back to 2014, when the number was $52,700.

Digging into the details, there are large disparities in the reservation wage, depending on demographics. Breaking the survey into those who are younger and older than 45 years, for example, shows a large and growing difference that leans toward younger team members. As recently as 2018, those under 45 had a lower reservation wage than those over 45, but in the most recent data the average person under 45 is expecting around $8,000 more than the average person over 45, $77,000 (up 23.6 percent since the pandemic began) to $68,900 (up 12.4 percent since the pandemic began). There is a large and persistent gender gap, with women's reservation wage under $60,000 and men's at $86,300.

The biggest gap is between those with college degrees--who expect $92,000--and those without, who expect around $60,000.

Of course, the details of your job opening will likely take you to a very different place from the simple average. The location of the role, what skills and experience you're hiring for, and what your closest competitors are offering are all significant factors in determining an appropriate offer.

That said, knowing the average--where a typical person's expectations begin--is a starting point for meeting potential employees where they want to be.