Let’s face it, money can be a touchy subject. Most employees usually want or need more money. The issue is so sensitive that many candidates interviewing for a job are hesitant to reveal their current income for fear of overselling or underselling what they are worth. Government and non-profit agencies often institute an established salary structure with a job description and salary range for their positions. In contrast, public companies may not have established salary structures; so where can a prospective employer look to compare salaries and be competitive within the market?
The following are my TOP FIVE strategies for staying competitive:
1) Ask a recruiter:
• One client asked me: “I need your best estimates for the minimum base salary and typical bonus potential for the following positions, based on your recruiting experience in our market.”
• Another client asked me: “I need two figures for each position listed below: (i.e. minimum base salary = $XXX; minimum bonus potential = $YYY).”
2) Research the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Economic Research Institute (ERI). These sites offer wage and salary surveys, along with information on the cost of living. However, keep in mind that a fee may be charged for the information.
3) Use the World Wide Web. Research the following:
• Salary.com – Enter a Job Title & Zip Code
• Simplyhired.com/salaries.html – Salary Calculator
• Indeed.com/salary – Salary search; 2-key entry
• Salary.Careerbuilder.com – Salary Calculator
• Payscale.com – Salary Comparison, Salary Survey, Search Wages
4) Request a Salary Guide from Robert Half International(RHI) – roberthalf.com/salary-guides This site contains useful salary guides that are industry and job title specific. RHI also partners with the Department of Labor to get its calculations, and a percent calculation is provided for each region.
5) Do a performance or “Stay” review with your current employee and ask leading salary questions: Why have you stayed here? What would make you leave? What are your nonnegotiable issues? How do you feel about your current salary?
You can determine your salary in the marketplace if you’re willing to do the research. Business owners need to set salaries so they are better than average for the job or area – or offer perks and benefits to stay competitive. Know your specific job market and pay a competitive wage. Your efforts will attract talented team players, the ones who will work tirelessly to make your business better and more profitable.