/, Work Tips/BNAG (that’s BANG out of order) – Is it right to ask for a person’s current salary?

BNAG (that’s BANG out of order) – Is it right to ask for a person’s current salary?

There comes a point in every interview that most candidates dread – the salary question. Is not something that one can lie about as this is too easy to confirm with previous employers when getting references. But there is also the chance of selling yourself short because many potential employers will offer just above what you’re currently getting rather than what the position is really offering. So it’s a bit of a catch 22. Is the solution to ban employers from asking the question in the first place?

The candidate perspective

Often candidates will look to move jobs because they want to earn more. In many countries and especially the US, there is a consistent wage gap between men and women. Women in the exact salary questionsame position, typically earn 20% less – 80 cents for every dollar earned by their male counterparts. By revealing her previous salary, a woman may never have the opportunity to close that wage gap despite her abilities to outperform her male colleagues.

Sometimes candidates negotiate on salaries in lieu of other benefits such as more flexible work hours or more days of annual leave. It could also be that they were willing to take a lesser salary just for the opportunity to work in a certain division or for a certain company because they believed the learning experience would be worth it. In this case the employee is still benefitting, but it does put them at a disadvantage when they want to move up to a more market related earning level.

Why hiring managers ask the salary question

Hiring managers are primarily concerned with two things: can the person do the job and what will be the cost to the company. If they can negotiate a lower starting salary then it it’s to the company’s benefit which puts them in a positive light.

Sometimes asking the salary question is also a bit of a tester to see how the candidate values themselves and how confident they are in their own abilities. But does this necessarily make them the best person for the job?

Should asking the salary question be banned?

In several areas on the East Coast of the US such as New York City, and the State of Massachusetts a complete ban has been implemented preventing employers from asking the salary question in interviews. Instead the companies have to state the salary and benefits up front. Of course they can first take the time to determine the potential employee’s worth before sharing salary information.

Those pushing to ban employers from asking the question say that a person should be hired on their worth rather than what they previously earned. This may sound fair, but just how easy is it to establish this in an interview?

Companies that are against the ban say that these measures are extreme and prevent companies from being able to negotiate on their own terms. It certainly puts a great deal of pressure on hiring managers to get it right when it comes to selecting employees. If they get it wrong the cost to the company can be high. (Think firing, rehiring and retraining)

So what is the best solution?

Instead of dreading the salary question, employees could be better prepared for it. If they are expecting much more than what they are currently earning they need to be able to confidently justify this. Hiring managers also need to come to the party, making the effort to properly evaluate candidates and offer salaries based on their worth within the budget they have available.

Resource On Demand (ROD) is Europe’s first specialist Salesforce Recruitment Agency. They were founded in 2007 and are highly respected across the entire Salesforce ecosystem. Their specialist areas of recruitment include; Salesforce (SFDC); digital marketing and marketing automation technologies, which include Eloqua, Marketo, ExactTarget and Pardot; Human Capital Management (HCM) technologies such as Workday and SAP HCM and SuccessFactors. For more information contact ROD on rod@resourceondemand.com or on 020 8123 7769.
2017-04-19T05:05:53+00:00 Careers, Work Tips|