Re: Job listings with demand for salary requirments

Subject: Re: Job listings with demand for salary requirments
From: Lauren <lauren -at- writeco -dot- net>
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Date: Mon, 05 Dec 2011 19:06:23 -0800

On 12/5/2011 4:38 PM, John Allred wrote:

Hello, all,
When a company lists a job and specifies that applicants must give
salary requirements in their applications, what are they fishing for?

They are fishing for the lowest number they can get away with paying you. If you say that you work at $x for a technical writer position, but at 1.5 x $x for a position that requires project management, then they will pay you the low $x and expect project management.

Do you give them a figure, or simply move on to the next job listing?

Offer a range, but stay true to what the ends of range involve, like whether you do documentation repair and project management in addition to technical writing from scratch.

I can't figure how anyone would be willing to give away a negotiating
strategy before a company even expresses interest in them. Hmm. Maybe
I'm answering my own question.

This is a hard market for employees and recruiters. If a real job is being offered, then ask what the job is offering. If this is a fishing expedition to test the waters in the market, then hold out for a real job offer. Recruiters and, I guess other employers, will get many résumés for one job and they do not know what that job is really worth in this market so they will ask people who are not ringing their bells what they are worth. If you are worth what you are worth, then they will not ask you for that number until they have made the job worth your while.

Really what it comes down is what happened last time, before the dot-com boom and subsequent bust Recruiters will pay the lowest amount they can get away with, just to get a foot in the door of an employers site, or employers will pay the lowest just to get a person on the project, and then, when the economy improves, they will hire a person who may charge more just to "fix" or "finish" what has been started. How many times have we been called to complete a project because the incumbent is not working out? The incumbent is the one who accepted a $20-$25 per hour technical writing job, while the replacement began negotiations at twice that amount and is expected to do much more work.

I still wonder why so many employers think that coming into a project with documentation prepared by a person who was let go is easier and worth less per hour than beginning a project from scratch.



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