Writing a great job description is hard enough, but there’s always the lingering question of how a business should advertise a position’s salary. There are different schools of thought on this topic, and what the company is looking for in a candidate may sway how it handles the situation.
One side of the issue believes it’s necessary to supply salary information to job seekers because many qualified candidates won’t bother applying without it. The other side posits it’s entirely unnecessary to post compensation because candidates who are truly in the market for a new job will apply knowing salary will be discussed at a later time. Every business must decide how informed it wants the candidate to be from the beginning of the interview process and how much negotiating power it wants to retain.
Here are four ways to consider salary information in a job description:
Advertise a lower salary
This may attract candidates who have a sincere interest in the position and aren’t only looking for the highest salary available. The candidates who apply will be more concerned with being happy at a company than making the most money.
This may also foster good will when hiring a new employee if the company’s initial offer is higher than what it advertised.
List the highest possible offer
If a company knows it provides competitive compensation within its industry, advertising this benefit can uncover applicants it otherwise might have missed. A business should be careful to note the salary is “up to” a certain amount. This will mitigate the chances of a candidate being upset with a different offer.
Post a salary range
Giving a salary range in a job post allows the company a small amount of leeway with compensation. Depending on the experience and skills a candidate brings to the position, the business can offer the high or low end of the range. This also provides more room to negotiate if the company believes the candidate will make a counteroffer.
A business should be aware stating a range can lead to problems when it offers an initial amount. Candidates may consider themselves to be at the top the range then feel disappointed if the company places them at the low end.
Don’t list anything
By not stating a level of compensation, the business is free to offer what it feels is most appropriate. This strategy gives the business the most negotiating power when hiring new employees, and allows you to offer the perfect candidate more than you would be prepared to offer less experiences candidates.
Not listing a salary has the added benefit of keeping employees’ compensation private within the workplace. Posting a specific salary or a range can be disruptive if other employees feel they should be making more than what is offered a new candidate.
There are no right or wrong ways to advertise a salary. The best option will be one that coincides with the business’s culture. Whether there’s a focus on happiness over compensation or the industry is highly competitive in regards to benefits will affect how benefits should be publicly posted.