RE: perspective on rates

Subject: RE: perspective on rates
From: "McLauchlan, Kevin" <Kevin -dot- McLauchlan -at- safenet-inc -dot- com>
To: "Gene Kim-Eng" <techwr -at- genek -dot- com>, <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 21 Oct 2008 14:39:36 -0400

Gene Kim-Eng wrote (replying to the scenario where there are just 3 or 4
techwriters in a company and one of them posts her/his salary as
representative of that company, and another writer from the same company
views the posted salary and finds it higher than what they, themselves
have been getting):
> I would consider this an indication that the company
> has either (a) a grossly unreasonable differential
> between high and low salaried employees (that is,
> one based on favoritism or nepotism and not on
> the clearly demonstrated performance of the
> employees), (b) a lousy method of evaluating its
> employees and communicating to them the reasons
> why they are in the pay grades they are in and why
> their salaries are positioned where they are in the
> pay ranges for their grades or (c) both.
> I don't post everybody's salaries for an entire group
> to see for obvious privacy reasons, but everyone
> knows what the pay ranges are for all the grades that
> are applicable to any group I manage. If two of my
> group decide to compare salaries and the lower-paid
> person doesn't understand what about his or her
> performance compared to the higher-paid person
> accounts for the differential, then that's a management
> failure on my part.

I've gathered the impression, rightly or wrongly, that you manage a
group that works pretty much in the same locale and pretty much on
related products.

At our place, each techwriter is basically a one-person department,
working in the silo that is their particular product line(s), and in the
city where that/those product line(s) is/are headquartered. We just had
a quick flurry of e-mails among the three (widely-scattered) North
American TWs, which was the first contact in several months. Now we'll
subside back into our respective swamps, reporting to our respective
business units, for another several months... perhaps I'll remember to
send a Christmas greeting. I'll probably not include the <indeterminate
number of> India writer(s) because I don't have the religious/cultural
info to know if that's a good idea or not.
But, the point is that we're all managed from different places. We've
also all been with the company different lengths of time (ten years for
me). I've hit the salary ceiling, unless I move to something that
doesn't involve techwriting. Others might not have. Also, because of
the acquisition history and the honoring of original contracts, I've got
5 weeks annual vacation while I believe everybody else tops out at 3
(mebbe four, but I don't raise it as a question...). Good thing the
site doesn't ask for bennies as well as salary. :-)

> The only good reason for a company to want to keep
> its employee salary data confidential is to prevent its
> competitors from using it to gain an advantage in
> hiring away its employees.

That would certainly make sense.

- Kevin
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RE: perspective on rates: From: Nancy Allison
RE: perspective on rates: From: McLauchlan, Kevin
RE: perspective on rates: From: Combs, Richard
RE: perspective on rates: From: McLauchlan, Kevin
Re: perspective on rates: From: Gene Kim-Eng

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