Why be explicit about salaries?

Recently we had a number of situations where the candidate and employer were not able to come to an agreement. This is frustrating for all involved and, I hope, the intention of none of them. Before the recent crisis going through a recruitment process, in order to benchmark your current situation and force you current employer to raise your salary, did happen. I hope these times will not return but I suspect they might already have. This is what we do to prevent this.

Have the offer of the client clear

During an intake meeting with a client, I will ask what the salary bandwidth for that specific position is and if there are scenarios in which he will consider a candidate with higher demands. Furthermore I try to get as much insight into fringe benefits. Some employers are a bit reluctant to disclose too much because then this is an incentive for a candidate to raise his expectations. I always remind them that a candidate has to deal with competition: other candidates might be willing to start for less.

Have the expectations of the candidate clear

During a (telephone) interview I will ask the candidate what his current package is and what are his expectations. I will not ask for the small details but will give an indication what to expect if they pursue a specific opportunity. The remark that a current package is not related to the salary in a new job is understandable. But let’s be practical. Why should I take your time with an assignment with a non-matching salary?

What we furthermore do to manage the salary part of the match-making process

Besides having the offer and expectations clear we will do the following:

  • Unless stated differently, the salary mentioned in an advertisement is the annual base salary. In The Netherlands this is a 12.96*monthly salary;
  • We will mention the maximum if this is defined;
  • In the final stages of the recruitment process we will ask for every detail to prevent mismatches, both current as well as expectations. This includes base salary, bonus, expenses, telephone, car, pension, vacation, education, flex work, etcetera;
  • In case of an interim assignment, we will mention the rate the interim manager receives for every hour worked. Expenses are not included in this amount.
  • An application process is, for both employer as well as employee, exchanging information in order to decide if there is a good match. The scenario remains that everything matches only not the remuneration. We will have to accept this,

Pieter de Kiewit

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