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Work/Employment
When to ask about pay rate?
By ballerinatwirler Comments: 2083, member since Sat May 29, 2004
On Sun Mar 22, 2015 09:43 PM

I recently graduated from college and I'm having a hard time finding a job that is the right fit for me. I've been applying for different positions that relate to my degree but haven't had much success. I had an interview the other day for a job. The job description was pretty generic. I did ask at the end of interview what was the starting pay rate for the position and she said she had no clue. I spoke with some of my friends and family members who think that the job is going to be a severe pay cut from my current job.

I will find out in a few days if I made it to the second round of interview since they are hiring for multiple positions.

I did some research online and it said to never ask about pay rates during an interview? I would really like to know before wasting my time at a second interview if the pay is horrible. Obviously I plan to wait and see if I get the interview and ask if the second interview goes well.

Ugh. I'm not loving job hunting!

4 Replies to When to ask about pay rate?

re: When to ask about pay rate?
By Moonlitefairy06member has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 7177, member since Fri Apr 16, 2004
On Sun Mar 22, 2015 09:53 PM
There's no truly right answer to this. Generally the rule of thumb is that asking about pay, benefits, anything like that is a big "no no" at an interview and that it isn't discussed until an employment offer is made. However, I do totally feel you on not wanting to waste your time, and the employer isn't going to want to want to their time either (unless they know who they want to hire but are required to interview a certain amount of people because of various policies which happens a lot unfortunately). My experience has often been that I'll have a phone interview first and they usually ask me what my salary requirements are to see if we are on the same page on what they can offer vs what I am looking for. But that's most definitely not always the case. Why is that your friends/family think it will be a paycut? The job description? Or the company? There are websites like Indeed that let employees anonymously say how much they make/made at that company. Indeed also lets you narrow the job search by salary which is helpful, though I'm not sure how accurate it is since sometimes the listings don't include a salary. I wish it were a requirement to put salary range in job descriptions. It would save employees and employers so much time.
re: When to ask about pay rate?
By hummingbird Comments: 10418, member since Mon Apr 18, 2005
On Mon Mar 23, 2015 08:00 AM
I think this is totally crazy! In Europe you list a salary range on the advert of the job, here you can get all the way to your final interview and find that they only want to offer peanuts! It's such a waste of everyones time. It's like trying to shop without being given the prices.
re: When to ask about pay rate?
By ballerinatwirler Comments: 2083, member since Sat May 29, 2004
On Wed Apr 15, 2015 07:48 PM
Thankfully I did not get the first job. I don't think it was the right fit for me. I have an interview Friday morning and once again I'm in the same boat of being curious.

I am hopeful that this job pays decently but of course I'll have to wait and go to the interview and go from there.
re: When to ask about pay rate?
By SarahdncrPremium member Comments: 634, member since Wed Jul 29, 2009
On Sat Apr 18, 2015 10:11 PM
Edited by Sarahdncr (214611) on 2015-04-18 22:22:42
This is a very interesting and timely discussion, as I have been out of the job market for over 27 years now, and I just started putting in a few resume's here and there, and 've also been getting a lot of unsolisitated inquiries from companies that know me and the work I did in the Forces (I just retired from the Forces in February), gauging my interest in coming to work for them.

So, I know my situation in very different than your's, but to add to the discussion, I AM asking about salary right up front from the get go, even sometimes before I interview. This is so I can quickly screen the inquirer so I am not wasting anyone's time as to if I am interested in the job or not as I know what I want to make in a retirement job, and also what I know I am worth in the civilian marketplace in my industry which is facilities engineering & facilities construction project management.

I've also been asking about salary at the very end of my interviews, if it was not previously brought up in the interview or if I did not already know the salary range going into the interview.

Funny, but just two weeks ago, I had a telephone interview for a job with a government contractor for a position in the US Pacific Northwest working for the USN. The corporate recruiter did not know the salary, and neither did the 3 on-site people who interviewed me -- which I found to be very strange.

The funny thing (sad actually--the state of employment practices today) is that at the end of this past week they offered me the job without even meeting me in person, and still they did not tell me any salary or benefit info when they made the job offer. They just wanted to know when and how fast I could start, (I think they are a bit desperate as they are into a new contract and it is not going well for them).

I told them they needed to slow down and start talking salary and benefits before I would accept the position. So now I am evaluating their job offer and who knows I might be living in the Pacific Northwest in a few months,..we will see.

So my advice and $0.02 is that while it should not be the very first question you ask, I don't think that it hurts to ask about salary at least at then end of the interview, (if the salary range has not already been told to you before hand) Also, it does not hurt either to call a companies HR department if there is an ad for a position that you see, but there is no salary mentioned in the ad.

Business's have to realize that folks need salary information to assist them in making decisions on where to seek employment and with which company they may want to work for.

Good Luck with your job hunt!!

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