Thursday, October 24, 2013
Wednesday, October 23, 2013
“What’s the salary range for this position? You won't tell me the top amount they're willing to offer?”
I've been doing this for a very long time, here is the reality of the scenario. Some companies have very specific ranges. Some companies have a rough idea. Some companies simply let the market tell them what they should be paying for a job. Some companies ask me to help them arrive at a fair range. Some companies will flex to a degree on what they are targeting for the hire. So as you can see there are numerous scenarios. No two situations are exactly the same.
It always depends on a person’s experience and how directly applicable it is to a company’s needs. Is the person more junior in experience? Is the person more senior in experience? How does the person’s experience compare to other people already on staff? And how is internal equity kept in line?
So there is never a real easy answer as there are so many variables. In the many years of doing this, my opinion of the best approach is to be certain that a company’s ideal number for the hire and a candidate’s ideal number on what they’d expect are in line. Do they have to be spot on? No. Sometimes there is flexibility on the company’s end, sometimes there is flexibility on the candidate’s end. Sometimes if the company feels the candidate is the person they want and the candidate feels that this is the opportunity for them there are creative ways of bridging possible gaps as well.
Last but not least, it is human tendency to always gravitate towards the top of a stated salary range. It never fails. The moment a range is thrown out in conversation the candidate will gravitate towards the top number. Right or wrong, consciously or unconsciously, I've seen it happen time and time again where a recruiter will tell a candidate a range, $65,000 to $80,000 for example, and when the offer comes and it is at $70,000 the candidate protests, “Hey Mr. Recruiter, you told me the job paid $80,000!”
The best way to avoid this, just be certain the candidate’s expectations and the company’s expectations fall within the “okay place.”
The bottom line: If I do my job correctly and all parties are forthcoming with information, then the hiring manager has an idea where they want to hire in, and the candidate has an expectation of where they need to be. Based on what I know from the candidate and from the hiring manager, if the situation were to move in a positive direction the candidate’s expectation will be met.
Thursday, October 10, 2013
Yesterday I overheard one of my colleagues speaking with a candidate about their resume. He asks why they didn't include any dates of employment. The response from the candidate was that he was instructed to leave dates off in an attempt to mask his age.
Frequently I’m asked the question by candidates, “Do you think my age will hurt me?”
The reality is that there will always be age discrimination in hiring decisions. It’s is a shame, but there will always be those making hiring decisions using age as a decision-making factor in their process. That’s just never going to change. However, I truly believe the majority of hiring managers do the right thing and base their decisions strictly on skills and applicable experiences as well as other factors, but do not allow age to enter into their selection.
In fact I have to say that I have seen more of my clients specifically saying that they are looking for someone with seasoning. And I believe that is true because companies are doing more with less and they need an impact player immediately as they don’t have the luxury of time to train someone. Budgets are tight and every hire has to make a difference as quickly as possible.
So what do you do with the resume? Don’t leave off dates. If you do, you will either be eliminated because you left them off, or you will be asked to include them on a revised resume. Instead simply include your last 10 to 15 years of experience and then include a section entitled previous work history to include…..and leave dates out in that section and just summarize the experience. Or you could even state, “Previous employment provided upon request.”
50 is the new 40 and 40 is the new 30 right? Attitude and outlook play a huge part in a person’s perceived age. Other than nasty tricks mother nature plays on us, age to a degree is just a number. I often hear from people that they are a young “whatever the number may be.” And I believe this as I feel the same about myself. I’d put my energy and stamina against any 20 something. I start my day at 3:30AM and end it only when I have finished what I set out to do that day. People tell me I look ten years or more younger than I am. I’m no Dick Clark freak of nature so I know plenty of other folks out there are just like me.
So while age discrimination may never disappear, in this market I feel as though it is less of a factor than in years past. Instead it’s not about that for many job seekers. It’s not about you. It’s about the job market. Keep positive and stay focused. Do something every day that moves you towards your goal.