Job posting doesn’t include a salary

Friday, March 20th, 2009 - Employment, Job Application, Job Interview Techniques, Minimum Wage, salary, salary negotiation

Salary Negotiation

Creative Commons License photo credit: bionicteaching

Joe asks: If a job posting doesn’t include a salary is it OK to ask what it is before a first interview?

In answer:
It depends on how desperate you are for employment, and also could be an employer “test” for applicants – particularly for those in sales.

You could assume they are nice and fair employers who provide good and decent remuneration packages against fair and reasonable jobs – but what is fair and reasonable? Then you could go through an application process that will take up around 12hrs of your time over three weeks and cost you in excess of $1000/£500 and find that either:

  • (a) they aren’t quite as nice as the advert/their website suggested
  • (b) they are nice, but you are not right for them/the job
  • (c) they are as nice, the job is ideal – but even at its maximum its £$20k/£10k under your current basic, oh and they don’t provide healthcare

Or you could hope for (d), where everything is OK, but right at the end of the interview you have to ask like a school kid what the salary is? This puts them in the power position, and you almost having to accept any number they utter.

If it was me, I would pick up the phone and make it your last question three/five detail questions about the job. If you don’t feel that confident, then read their website for remuneration policy, and quoting that back at them in your Cover Letter state: the key inclusions you expect (like healthcare); a package number you would see as reasonable in light of your current package/their job description.

If you leave it to the last issue of the first job interview, then the odds are stacked against you and for them. Job interviews are a negotiation and not a given.

Good Luck!

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