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'So what salary are you on?' - Why you should tell your recruiter

Salary is undoubtedly a prominent feature in current news, from Iceland making it illegal to pay male and females differently for the same role, to British corporations publicly announcing the salaries of employees.

Not unrelated to this, we have been seeing an ever-increasing amount of articles and comments expressing why you should never disclose your salary details to a recruiter. This trend, linked to the gender pay gap, is suggesting that it is not relevant to the recruiter and that skills and expertise should be isolated and valued without a price tag attached.

Skill sets and required experience remains core and gender parity is also, for us, something which is a big focus to address. Whilst we are fully aware that there is an element of privacy when it comes to how much you make – something we always treat with utmost confidentiality and care – there are actually many reasons why letting your recruiter know (at least a broader range) is a significant benefit to you. 

1)  Skillset and market worth

A good recruiter should very much be able to recognise a desirable skill set and its approximate worth in the market they work in.

Once we know what salary you are currently on, whether this is underpaid or overpaid, we will do our utmost to get you what you want in your next role and also be able to advise on how best to go about this in the interview and offer negotiation process.

We can also offer advice on the market – whether you are shooting too low, too high – and generally be a helping hand. Sometimes having been in the same company/position for a while, people can get caught up in that internal structuring. Having a fresh perspective on your skills and expertise in comparison to the market is insightful and reflective when thinking about your next move. By no means do we sit by and placidly let this conversation go by if we spot a discrepancy in your expectations compared to what we think your worth is we will let you know - high or low. 

2) Benefits and bonuses

There are also a huge amount of other considerations to take into account, whether it is bonus, pension, healthcare, car allowance, equity, LTIP etc. Having interviewed thousands of clients and candidates we can give an honest and unbiased opinion on these things and help you find your way through the murky world of compensation which given peoples reluctance to talk about even in social settings, means that it is hard to spot truth from fiction.

 

3) High-ball not low-ball

“Recruiters only ask for my salary details so that they can low ball me and try and find me jobs at the same or less”

This is an often heard phrase or at least words to that effect. But in reality, using your salary as a thinly veiled tactic to try and get the minimum salary possible is simply not a sensible or commercial use of a recruiter’s time. Incentives are, not only, based upon a positively correlating to more commission, but also the person being happy enough in the job to stay in it and have a good experience – none of which is as likely if you end up accepting a pay cut you are unhappy with.

Similarly, the reverse of this makes no sense either –to inflate your salary expectations and try and get much more than you are worth would annoy a client, lead you down the path to a final round where you have unreasonable/unachievable salary expectations and eventually everyone loses out and wastes a lot of time during the process.

At Freshminds specifically, we prefer to work in ranges; this way your value has the flexibility to increase during the interview process. We also make sure to ask if your expectations have changed throughout the process and when it comes to a potential offer stage, this way we can be clear and concise with the client on what you are expecting to be offered, and more importantly what kind of offer would make you happily accept on the spot .vs. one you might accept but need to ponder .vs. one you probably won’t be happy with and will walk away from.

It is important to remember, good recruiters are on your side. We want to get you your dream role; we want you to be happy and fulfilled in your new position and essentially walk away from your recruitment experience spreading positive impressions about the process and said recruiter – this only leads to more work for us in a good way.

Therefore, although it is within your right and in some places your legal duty to not be asked about your salary, there are definitely significant benefits of sharing past and desired salary figures with your recruiter in order to help make the process of landing your dream role that little bit easier.  

 

Imogen Forbes-Edwards

Edith Carmichael

Consultant, Experienced and Executive Hire Team

 

Edith engages with candidates and clients for experienced, permanent roles. She manages senior level opportunities on a range of strategic and commercial functions across various industries.

 

Interested in finding out more about this subject?  Get in touch with Edith to discuss further.