Comment On Ask WTF: Salary

Some IT problems are easier to solve than others. And some might be downright impossible, like this letter: [expand full text]
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Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 08:03 • by StephenCleary
THIS IS AN OUTRAGE. REVERSE DISCRIMINATION.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 08:06 • by Soumynona (unregistered)
I always want more money.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 08:07 • by snoofle
If you want to find out what you're worth, change the name on your resume to a male name and submit it to a few headhunters to see what sort of salary ranges are available for "you" in your chosen area.

You don't actually have to interview - just get an idea of what they're paying at similar companies for similar positions.

Food for thought...

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 08:16 • by Alek (unregistered)
In some countries, the law makes it mandatory for the employers to communicate salaries statistics averaged by gender, age and seniority to the unions. This is at least true in France ("Comité d'Entreprise").
As a unionist myself, I've been able to tell many fellow employees to know whether their salary is fair or not.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 08:21 • by Avonelle Lovhaug (unregistered)
Your advice is excellent. Too many people focus on what the person next to them is making, and assuming bad intentions when they discover that by comparison they are making less. There will ALWAYS be people who are making more than you, and many of them will not (in your mind anyway) have earned it. There are many, many reasons for this. You may think many of those reasons are "unfair", but you may not be right. Management will often value things you discount. For example: In my experience some people think following the rules is the most important thing, and will think those who don't follow the rules should make less. Guess what? This is not always true. Someone who takes risks and is successful may be more highly valued than someone who doesn't.

Focus on whether or not your pay is satisfying to personally, and take steps to correct it if it isn't. But don't spend time worrying about what others are making.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 08:24 • by WC (unregistered)
I was recently in a situation where I didn't feel I was making what I was worth. This had nothing to do with others around me in the company, but it did have to do with others in the industry.

After asking for a proper raise, and being denied, I left. My new job was a 40% pay raise from the previous. Problem solved. In fact, it turns out that employers that shaft you on pay also shaft you on other things. The new company makes it much easier to take a vacation, and they have full medical. Things just generally go smoother here.

My advice to anyone who thinks they are being underpaid: Ask for a raise, and start looking for a new job if they won't give you what you feel you are worth. You don't have to change, and you may find you're being paid fairly after all. But at least you'll have options.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 08:25 • by Foo (unregistered)
391283 in reply to 391280
Alek:
In some countries, the law makes it mandatory for the employers to communicate salaries statistics averaged by gender, age and seniority to the unions. This is at least true in France ("Comité d'Entreprise").
As a unionist myself, I've been able to tell many fellow employees to know whether their salary is fair or not.


Unions. There's TRWTF. They manage to screw everyone over.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 08:32 • by Matt (unregistered)
Can't help but notice that your evidence of the paygap makes a bare effort of taking experience into account- bare enough to make the effort meaningless.

Not to mention no effort whatsoever to take into account career changes, geographical location, or the fact that within even similar-seeming jobs, there are differences that affect pay.

Fact of the matter is, this study wasn't written to answer a question, it was written to support a political platform.

Additional point- asking about salaries is a firing offense at every company I've worked at. Do not do this. This is terrible advice. Best case scenario, you create tension between yourself and your coworkers and you do not want that.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 08:38 • by StMarc (unregistered)
391285 in reply to 391284
1) In some states there are laws that protect employees who discuss salaries regardless of employer policy. YMMV.

2) You're right: the pay gap is mostly a creature of statistical manipulation with a thin layer of political correctness on top.

3) That doesn't mean that in any *individual* situation, somebody might be making more or less than their colleagues. It doesn't have anything to do with purposeful discrimination most of the time, but if they feel they should be paid comparably, they have to take action. It won't correct it self.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 08:39 • by Okay then? (unregistered)
391286 in reply to 391284
Matt:
Additional point- asking about salaries is a firing offense at every company I've worked at. Do not do this. This is terrible advice. Best case scenario, you create tension between yourself and your coworkers and you do not want that.

PROTIP: That's either because they were significantly shortchanging you, or significantly shortchanging a lot of your co-workers. Welcome to IT!

In respons to the article: Thank you for not going on a mens-rights tirade, when I saw the letter I had my hand over the rage button - but you delivered.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 08:40 • by yername (unregistered)
391287 in reply to 391283
Foo:
Alek:
In some countries, the law makes it mandatory for the employers to communicate salaries statistics averaged by gender, age and seniority to the unions. This is at least true in France ("Comité d'Entreprise").
As a unionist myself, I've been able to tell many fellow employees to know whether their salary is fair or not.


Unions. There's TRWTF. They manage to screw everyone over.

"Everyone", in this case, being the employers and owners who prefer not to pay fair salaries, offer proper benefits, create a good working environment, treat other people with respect or comply with the law.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 08:42 • by NaN (Not a Name) (unregistered)
Some jobs back, I went through the process of building up a dev team which involved contractors being hired on as employees. There were a lot more variables than just experience. Pay was also a factor of when they were hired and who else was available at the time.

By the way, the highest paid person on the team was a woman. She was probably overpaid in comparison to this market, but at the time we hired here, there was just no one else available who could do the job.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 08:43 • by Anon Ymous (unregistered)
I don't know why salaries are such a taboo topic. Yes your employer doesn't want you talking to your coworkers about it because they want to negotiate with you on an individual basis and the less information you have about the market for your job/skills the more of an advantage they have in negotiating your salary.

If you think you are being shortchanged look online. There are websites that list information on salaries by field and location. If you find that you might be undercompensated, explain the situation to a coworker and ask if he or she would be willing to discuss their compensation with you. The worst they can say is no.

If you are dissatisfied, my advice would be to look for a new job. The reason being you have far more leverage negotiating your initial salary than trying to negotiate a raise. Just my $0.02.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 08:47 • by Alek (unregistered)
391290 in reply to 391283
TRWTF here might be using the word "unionist", which has a political and historical meaning according to wordreference ("supporter of union of Great Britain and Ireland"), instead of "union activist".

By the way, in France, many unions in a single firm compete every four years to get the employees vote and have the most representatives elected. In a way, this prevents them to "screw every over", at least for a long time.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 08:48 • by mott555
391292 in reply to 391287
yername:
Foo:
Alek:
In some countries, the law makes it mandatory for the employers to communicate salaries statistics averaged by gender, age and seniority to the unions. This is at least true in France ("Comité d'Entreprise").
As a unionist myself, I've been able to tell many fellow employees to know whether their salary is fair or not.


Unions. There's TRWTF. They manage to screw everyone over.

"Everyone", in this case, being the employers and owners who prefer not to pay fair salaries, offer proper benefits, create a good working environment, treat other people with respect or comply with the law.


"Everyone" also includes the workers who are often forced to pay dues to a union they may want nothing to do with, and are often told not to do their job (strike) in order to help their union prove some political point.

"Everyone" also includes non-union workers who may step in and take their place during strikes, yet because of stupid laws pushed through by the union leaders these non-union workers still have to pay union dues!

The only ones who consistently profit from the existence of unions are the leaders of said unions.

I don't know if we need unions or not, but what I do know is if we do need unions, the ones we have now are not the ones we need.

/political rant

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 08:52 • by Mike (unregistered)
So the advice in this article is to put up with discrimination and be satisfied?

No, this is wrong. Yes, the advice at one level is practical in that there will always be differences between individuals and that's life, it isn't fair. But that is completely different from accepting institutional sexism in the work place.

What is the advice for black people who get paid less? That's life and if you don't like it you have a personal problem?

Disgusting!!!

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 08:53 • by bill (unregistered)
"People who settle end up blowing out the candles on a retirement cake iced with regret. " Elegantly put.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 08:59 • by Bob (unregistered)
391295 in reply to 391283
Foo:
Alek:
In some countries, the law makes it mandatory for the employers to communicate salaries statistics averaged by gender, age and seniority to the unions. This is at least true in France ("Comité d'Entreprise").
As a unionist myself, I've been able to tell many fellow employees to know whether their salary is fair or not.


Unions. There's TRWTF. They manage to screw everyone over.


Ah, spot the USAian. I thought their product advertising was slick until I saw the pure brainfuck the government manages to visit upon its citizens.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 09:00 • by mystery (unregistered)
So, you get a lady submitter and you call her BH. hmmm

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 09:01 • by Matt (unregistered)
391297 in reply to 391286
Okay then?:

PROTIP: That's either because they were significantly shortchanging you, or significantly shortchanging a lot of your co-workers. Welcome to IT!

In respons to the article: Thank you for not going on a mens-rights tirade, when I saw the letter I had my hand over the rage button - but you delivered.


Maybe, maybe not. Also worth pointing out, I work in an "At Will" state. Which I'm fine with, because it cuts both ways. I've walked from more than a couple of bad situations because it's not hard to get a better offer. Welcome to IT!

And this isn't a mens-rights tirade. There may very well be a pay gap. I don't know. And the referenced data sure as heck isn't going to tell me.

This is more of a intellectual tirade. If you want to show evidence of a pay gap, actually show evidence of it. Don't hold up the same tired data, with the same heavy-handed slant, all the while ignoring the valid concerns about your results.

I do like the idea of sending out identical resumes with different names. Not statistically definitive, as it's one data point. You could, for instance, get one jerk of a headhunter. But doing that could be interesting.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 09:01 • by mozbo
391298 in reply to 391283
Yeah, especially the kids, they NEED to work in a factory at age 6. And you and me, it'd be much better if bosses could just lock us in for 110 hours a week. It's totally unfair that unions helped stop that. They're really mean.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 09:01 • by ObiWayneKenobi
The big problem in IT is a tendency to lowball, and taking a lowball salary screws you later on. For example, if you were making $60k but were laid off, you might settle for a job offering $45k rather than have no income at all or meager unemployment. But now a new job will look at the fact you're making $45k and, instead of saying "The market rate is $65k, we will pay you that and make you WANT to stay here" they think "This person is only getting $45k. We can offer $50k and save $15k off market rate" and then wonder why that person only stays long enough to find a higher paying job.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 09:04 • by Nick (unregistered)
Good advice, but I respectfully disagree. You should never be satisfied with your pay. Once you are, you'll stop striving to better yourself, stop being competitive with your peers, and stop being recognized as an outstanding achiever. Once you're happy, you've lost the game.

This isn't to say that you should pine for more pay. Set your goals just out of reach so you can keep striving for them.

Last thing: you're never going to get the raise you don't ask for.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 09:06 • by polanski (unregistered)
TRWTF happens when you're being paid less than the handyman. And that one's actually a true story in Middle-Eastern Europe.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 09:07 • by RaceProUK
391302 in reply to 391293
Mike:
So the advice in this article is to put up with discrimination and be satisfied?

That's not at all what the article advised. Let me point out the last few sentences:
Figure out what you’re worth, and demand that in return. Don’t let anyone cheat you out of that. Life is far too short for that.

So the advice is basically 'make sure you earn enough to be happy'.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 09:13 • by Anketam
391304 in reply to 391282
WC:
I was recently in a situation where I didn't feel I was making what I was worth. This had nothing to do with others around me in the company, but it did have to do with others in the industry.

After asking for a proper raise, and being denied, I left. My new job was a 40% pay raise from the previous. Problem solved. In fact, it turns out that employers that shaft you on pay also shaft you on other things. The new company makes it much easier to take a vacation, and they have full medical. Things just generally go smoother here.

My advice to anyone who thinks they are being underpaid: Ask for a raise, and start looking for a new job if they won't give you what you feel you are worth. You don't have to change, and you may find you're being paid fairly after all. But at least you'll have options.
One of my friends while in college was doing software development and was making $45,000. When he got his degree they did not give him a pay raise, but he was ok with it since it was a small company and he liked the benefits. A year later the company got absorbed by another company and he had to pretty much be rehired. I told him that if he asked for anything less than $60,000 I would go to his house and beat him up. He asked for $60,000 and got it. Then on IM he told me: "The guy did not even bat an eye when I said $60k."
(1 min later)
"I should have asked for more."

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 09:14 • by Matt (unregistered)
391305 in reply to 391292
mott555:


"Everyone" also includes the workers who are often forced to pay dues to a union they may want nothing to do with, and are often told not to do their job (strike) in order to help their union prove some political point.

"Everyone" also includes non-union workers who may step in and take their place during strikes, yet because of stupid laws pushed through by the union leaders these non-union workers still have to pay union dues!

The only ones who consistently profit from the existence of unions are the leaders of said unions.

I don't know if we need unions or not, but what I do know is if we do need unions, the ones we have now are not the ones we need.

/political rant


This is why I love the idea of Right To Work laws. If unions provide a deal that workers like, then they can feel free to join. If not, then not. It puts the choice back where it belongs.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 09:15 • by Delve
391306 in reply to 391292
mott555:
"Everyone" also includes the workers who are often forced to pay dues to a union they may want nothing to do with, and are often told not to do their job (strike) in order to help their union prove some political point.

"Everyone" also includes non-union workers who may step in and take their place during strikes, yet because of stupid laws pushed through by the union leaders these non-union workers still have to pay union dues!

The only ones who consistently profit from the existence of unions are the leaders of said unions.

I don't know if we need unions or not, but what I do know is if we do need unions, the ones we have now are not the ones we need.

/political rant


Oh, yes. I'd be outraged if I had top pay dues to an organization so that they could bring the full strength of the workforce to bear against the natural greed of the employers in salary negotiations.

Oh, right. I forgot. Collective bargaining is only a good thing when it's in the interest of corporations and free markets should only apply to sucking the money out of the public's pocket by any means necessary. Employment should always be every-person-for-themself like a herd of cattle before a pack of wolves deciding they'd be better off if they all split up.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 09:20 • by Delve
391308 in reply to 391304
Anketam:
I told him that if he asked for anything less than $60,000 I would go to his house and beat him up. He asked for $60,000 and got it. Then on IM he told me: "The guy did not even bat an eye when I said $60k."
(1 min later)
"I should have asked for more."


Standard salary negotiation regardless of position. Ask for a lot and argue down gently. Don't get absurd, but don't ask for your 'worth.' If they reject you outright then they wouldn't have paid you your worth anyway. This isn't a no-haggle car lot this is your prospective job.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 09:20 • by Anketam
391309 in reply to 391284
Matt:
Additional point- asking about salaries is a firing offense at every company I've worked at. Do not do this. This is terrible advice. Best case scenario, you create tension between yourself and your coworkers and you do not want that.
I would advise not working at companies that have that kind of policy since it is likely a symptom of other issues. The only reason why you should not share salary information is because it has a high probability of causing envy. However, if you and the coworker you are considering doing this with are both comfortable with people making more than themselves then I see no harm. My coworker and I over the past 4 years have shared and compared our promotions and cost of living and merit increases.

Also if you are uncomfortable talking with coworkers there are sites that have salary information broken out by a wide variety of parameters (and some even by company). My current company even shares the salary distribution for each job title so you can see where you fall. Right now I fall below the average, but I am ok with that since I can meet all my needs and maintain my lifestyle.

Lastly there are some companies that will pay 20% above the industry standard, but that is because their work environment is highly competitive and they expect overtime, and if you only put in the min 40 hours you will likely get fired.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 09:21 • by Danielle (unregistered)
I know exactly what you mean! I'm a female C++ developper. My boyfriend works at the same place. And we do the same job, we even work on the same dev team!

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 09:22 • by Mike (unregistered)
391311 in reply to 391302
Or basically, discrimination is your problem, and if your skills are not such that you are good at that (regardless of how good you are at your job) then that is your problem and the employer can carry on discriminating because you weren't tough enough.

It's the same message. Discrimination is the victim's problem.

Wrong!

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 09:22 • by brazzy
Here's a method through which a group of people can discover their average wage without anyone disclosing their personal wage:

* Stand in a circle, choose a random person to start.
* The first person comes up with a large random number, writes it down in secret, then adds their wage to it and shows the result to the next person.
* The next person takes the number they were shown, adds their own large random number (which is also written down in secret) and their wage, and shows the result to the next.
* Repeat until the first person is again reached.
* In the second round, each person subtracts their random number from the total before showing it to the next.
* When the fist person is reached again, the total is the sum of everyone's wages, so divide it by the number of people to get the average.
* Do NOT do the calucaltions on the same piece of paper and destroy all the papers afterwards - the secrecy of individual wages hinges on the fact that nobody knows how much any of the others added and substracted.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 09:31 • by Oh for crying out loud (unregistered)
The "paygap" is an average across all industries, levels of education and experience. Almost all of it is explained by the fact that women, more than average, make choices that don't necessarily maximize lifetime income but instead maximize happiness, family, or whatever.

For example, women on average work fewer hours per week (outside the home) than men.

For example, women tend to be the ones who have babies and take extended time off of work (slackers!).

Anytime someone mentions this 75% trope in the context of an individual salary -- that the women in a department are paid 75% of what the men are for equivalent work -- anyone who thinks that should stay away from statistics, economics and finance. Please.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 09:33 • by Losty (unregistered)
Matt:

Additional point- asking about salaries is a firing offense at every company I've worked at. Do not do this.


There's your real WTF.... :p
What country is this?

In Holland it's kind of a taboo to talk about this, but they can't fire you for it :p

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 09:35 • by Your Name (unregistered)
In the public sector, everyone's salary is public information, and somehow life still goes on.

I'm just saying.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 09:36 • by Foo Bar (unregistered)
I love how many commenters project their own very large biases onto this answer. Some think you're a politically correct communist demanding equal wages regardless of merit, others think you're an apologist for big business telling oppressed workers to suck it up.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 09:38 • by Remy Porter
391317 in reply to 391293
If that's what you get from "Figure out what you're worth and demand that", I think there's a severe disconnect in what's written and what's read. Your conclusion is the exact opposite of what the article said.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 09:39 • by Anketam
391318 in reply to 391306
Delve:
mott555:
"Everyone" also includes the workers who are often forced to pay dues to a union they may want nothing to do with, and are often told not to do their job (strike) in order to help their union prove some political point.

"Everyone" also includes non-union workers who may step in and take their place during strikes, yet because of stupid laws pushed through by the union leaders these non-union workers still have to pay union dues!

The only ones who consistently profit from the existence of unions are the leaders of said unions.

I don't know if we need unions or not, but what I do know is if we do need unions, the ones we have now are not the ones we need.

/political rant


Oh, yes. I'd be outraged if I had top pay dues to an organization so that they could bring the full strength of the workforce to bear against the natural greed of the employers in salary negotiations.

Oh, right. I forgot. Collective bargaining is only a good thing when it's in the interest of corporations and free markets should only apply to sucking the money out of the public's pocket by any means necessary. Employment should always be every-person-for-themself like a herd of cattle before a pack of wolves deciding they'd be better off if they all split up.
The major purpose of unions dates back to the time when there was no government regulations on companies and the workers had to protect themselves from abusive companies. Now companies have to deal with government regulation and unions which creates extra burden on the company. Also unions have become the very thing they hated: greedy. The unions using their power force companies to pay more and offer better benefits than what the workers are contributing in value to the company.

If you have a worker and are paying them $50,000 a year and an extra $50,000 in the form of benefits and overhead, then that worker better be generating over $100,000 of value to the company. But the union protects the weaker workers that are not making that break even point let alone contributing to the profitibility of the company, while at the same time demanding more money. Unfortunately unions in many cases have forced companies into very tight margins, and when a little trouble hits the market they go under.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 09:41 • by Rodnas (unregistered)
So, when it is about salary everyone is suddenly very serious. Not a single joking comment to be found. Okay, i will do it.

Lets ask Paula Bean what her salary is and use that as a base salary which will increase with your skills/experience.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 09:43 • by Remy Porter
391320 in reply to 391300
Speaking only for myself, more salary and my desire to better myself are completely unrelated to each other. Don't tell my day job, but I make more money than I know what to do with. A raise is nice, but it's not something that's a real motivator for me. More vacation time on the other hand...

My motivation to be recognized as an outstanding achiever is because I want to be an outstanding achiever. I like what I do and I want to be good at it. I want to push my organization to be good at it, and create an environment that fosters skill enhancement.

I certainly expect to be paid well for my time- and I am.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 09:44 • by brazzy
391321 in reply to 391313
Oh for crying out loud:
The "paygap" is an average across all industries, levels of education and experience. Almost all of it is explained by the fact that women, more than average, make choices that don't necessarily maximize lifetime income but instead maximize happiness, family, or whatever.

The wage difference is *in part* explainable by life and career choices, but definitely not all of it. There is still a 9% gap AFTER you factor out education, experience, industry and unionization (source: http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,1983185,00.html)

Oh for crying out loud:

Anytime someone mentions this 75% trope in the context of an individual salary -- that the women in a department are paid 75% of what the men are for equivalent work -- anyone who thinks that should stay away from statistics, economics and finance. Please.

Please explain. If an individual salary of a woman is 75% of an equally educated and experienced male colleague in the same department, isn't that the most crystal clear example of wage discrimination?

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 09:44 • by Sad Day (unregistered)
In my experience this "That co-worker plays golf with the right people" is what really matters, or at least i was luck enough to get 3 jobs that was like that lol.
Once i asked my manager why my rank/wage was lower than the people that came to ask my help every day. The answer? You dont have enough malice.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 09:49 • by Matt (unregistered)
391323 in reply to 391309
Anketam:
I would advise not working at companies that have that kind of policy since it is likely a symptom of other issues.


While I don't disagree, it's a bit like trying to find a company that doesn't have a "No porn at work" policy.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 09:55 • by Delve
391325 in reply to 391318
Anketam:
The major purpose of unions dates back to the time when there was no government regulations on companies and the workers had to protect themselves from abusive companies. Now companies have to deal with government regulation and unions which creates extra burden on the company. Also unions have become the very thing they hated: greedy. The unions using their power force companies to pay more and offer better benefits than what the workers are contributing in value to the company.

If you have a worker and are paying them $50,000 a year and an extra $50,000 in the form of benefits and overhead, then that worker better be generating over $100,000 of value to the company. But the union protects the weaker workers that are not making that break even point let alone contributing to the profitibility of the company, while at the same time demanding more money. Unfortunately unions in many cases have forced companies into very tight margins, and when a little trouble hits the market they go under.


There are still very few regulations regarding employment. Safety requirements? Yes. But if you can hire the workers for a soul crushing, family destroying minimum wage with no benefits and a paltry few days off (which can't be afforded since that's hours you're not working) well then. GOOD ON YOU! If you can get away with it. History shows that over time given any imbalance of power one side will dominate and the rest will suffer at the whim of the powerful.

As far as unproductive workers are concerned, I don't claim that our current crop of unions are halo toting saviors. But to demolish a system because the current inhabitants of it are less than savory... if we're going down that road let's go ahead and take it all the way and lynch the politicians, stake the bureaucrats out in the sun, take the high impact toys away from constabulary and the military, and have ourselves some proper anarchy shall we?

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 09:57 • by Micky (unregistered)
391326 in reply to 391300
Nick:
Once you are, you'll stop striving to better yourself, stop being competitive with your peers, and stop being recognized as an outstanding achiever. Once you're happy, you've lost the game.


You've only lost if competition and striving for more and more and more is a core feature of your life. Not everybody is like that. Many, at least I hope, reach a point where they can say that they've reached what they wanted to reach and from now on money is not the deciding factor anymore.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 09:58 • by anon (unregistered)
391327 in reply to 391299
ObiWayneKenobi:
The big problem in IT is a tendency to lowball, and taking a lowball salary screws you later on. For example, if you were making $60k but were laid off, you might settle for a job offering $45k rather than have no income at all or meager unemployment. But now a new job will look at the fact you're making $45k and, instead of saying "The market rate is $65k, we will pay you that and make you WANT to stay here" they think "This person is only getting $45k. We can offer $50k and save $15k off market rate" and then wonder why that person only stays long enough to find a higher paying job.
THIS JUST IN: Employers are cheap bastards that don't have your best interests in mind and will penny-pinch at every opportunity...
</sarcasm>

As snoofle intimated, it's all just a game, and you'll be much better off if *you* know how to play.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 10:02 • by golddog (unregistered)
First, I think I must say that I'm in the category of Remy's friend: “I like having more money, but I was making enough before.” So my viewpoint may be skewed; I can't see how people in this industry can possibly spend the kind of money we make.

And yes, I've looked at places like glassdoor.com and see for my experience/skills/etc, I'm not getting paid fairly. But, what would I do with another $X? I live quite nicely within the salary I get now.

For those people out there worrying about salary, don't let that be the driving force behind a potential job search. If you enjoy the work and the people with whom you work, that's worth a lot more than going to some shitty job for something as trivial as money.

When I last interviewed, practically the first words out of anyone's mouth (especially recruiters) were: "how much is your salary?"

My response was always that that isn't the main factor: If an employer wants to stand over me, poking me with a stick, trying to get me to code faster, guess what? There isn't enough money.

All that's nice to be said, but you shouldn't get taken advantage of either. It's a balanacing act.

Strange coincidence that this came up now. We recently had our company call at which various things like sales, general news, etc are discussed.

When it got to the portion of the company I support (I am the single developer responsible for our main application), the CEO talked about how we're $1M ahead of revenue for that sector, well ahead of our projected client retention rates. Later in the call, a different manager thanked me by name for something I'd put in last week to make her life a lot easier.

So, I'm sitting there thinking <Carl Spackler>How about a little something for the effort?</Carl Spackler>.

Of course, I can't take credit for the entirety of that good news; the product owner does a great job, as do the admins and the sales people.

But, at the same time, I'm an important part of that team. Spread the wealth around a bit...

OK, rant over. :-)

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 10:03 • by Matt (unregistered)
391329 in reply to 391321
brazzy:

Please explain. If an individual salary of a woman is 75% of an equally educated and experienced male colleague in the same department, isn't that the most crystal clear example of wage discrimination?


No. What you've proposed is *an* explanation, but not the only explanation, and that is the failing of every "study" I've seen on the subject. They don't attempt to account for all explanations of wage gaps in order to identify the cases that must be due to discrimination.

In your hypothetical, there are a few unanswered questions still. First is actual ability, which is highly subjective, unfortunately. But the fact of the matter is that experience does not equal ability. Secondly, same department does not equal same job or same job demands, which affects salary. As has been pointed out, bargaining ability has a great effect on salary.

Then we get into fun little edge cases. For instance, a company I worked for some years ago went through a restructuring that brought all the disparate programming groups into one department. A half dozen different departments equaled a half dozed different ways of determining a programmer's starting salary, based on a number of different things, including the fact that a few of those departments used to be their own company that had been bought by the parent company. And now, we're all one department. That's exactly the sort of thing that "studies" like this don't take into account.

Look- this sort of study is difficult. Anyone that claims to have the "right" answer is almost certainly doing so more to support a political platform than anything else, although I'd love to see more comprehensive data.

And last, but certainly not least, your situation is hypothetical. Statistics don't deal in the hypothetical.

Re: Ask WTF: Salary

2012-10-02 10:03 • by DCRoss
391330 in reply to 391323
Matt:
While I don't disagree, it's a bit like trying to find a company that doesn't have a "No porn at work" policy.


They exist. Perhaps you're just working in the wrong industry.

You may also find that the grass is not only always greener on the other side, it also smells a lot better and isn't infested with vermin, but that's a whole other story.
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