Dos and don’ts of salary transparency - Glassdoor for Employers

Dos and don'ts of salary transparency

Job seekers and employees are clear: they want salary transparency. With an increasing number of states requiring salary ranges in job postings, it's time to board the salary transparency train. But without a thoughtful approach to address pay transparency, you can derail your efforts and harm your brand.

Pay transparency isn't a one-size-fits-all, and it doesn't have to be complicated. We can help with some dos and don'ts on your journey to salary transparency - before the train leaves the station with your top talent on board.

DO: Embrace DEI  

First, understand why pay transparency is important. It doesn't (just) mean disclosing pay ranges on job postings, it means demonstrating your commitment to fair and equitable pay and  closing the gender pay gap

This means stepping up and making a real investment in diversity, inclusion, and equity at your organization - beyond some text on your website. Without equity, there can be no equality. It's not just important to job seekers and employees, it's the right thing to do, and standing tall to say pay equity matters to you can set you apart from the competition.

DON'T: Make pay ranges too broad

The day after New York required job postings to include salary ranges, Citibank got skewered online for an unrealistic, way-too-broad pay range in a job posting. While it did revise the job posting and said the zero to $2 million salary range was a technical error, it wasn't a great start for its salary transparency position.

View this discussion on Fishbowl: Curious what conversations you're having about pay transparency laws and what standards your company is utilizing. Our TA VP wants to post a fake lower range so that when candidates inevitably aim for the top, we still land in budget - seems like this will cause a decrease in qualified applicants. Thoughts?

Be reasonable and realistic about posted salary ranges. If candidates with wildly different levels of experience could do the job, perhaps you need to either better clarify the roles and responsibilities of the position or split it into two positions - one for someone junior in their career and another for someone more experienced.

...when you take that transparency out [of employer branding], you're leaving space for insecurity, which means people are questioning things instead of being able to really flourish in your organization and contribute back to your organization.

- Kelby Tansey, Manager, Recruitment Marketing at Southwest Airlines

DO: Get ahead of requirements 

Work on getting to salary transparency ahead of schedule - before it becomes a requirement. By not waiting until you're required to disclose ranges by law, you're signaling that pay equity is important at your organization, making it a more attractive choice to job seekers. Even if it's not currently mandated in your state, it could eventually become a requirement, and why wait for the inevitable when transparency can help workers right now?

Provide managers with a guide to practicing pay transparency - what to do and what not to do and how to gear up for what's next.

View this discussion on Fishbowl: Anyone affected by the latest (or upcoming) pay transparency laws? What was your organization's approach?

DON'T: Underestimate salary transparency's role in recruiting 

In the competition for top talent, salary transparency is one of your best recruiting tools. By providing a pay range, you're indicating to job seekers that you have nothing to hide and that your company promotes a culture of inclusion, honesty, and fairness. This can lessen office politics and minimize resentment from workers thinking someone else is getting paid differently than they do for the same work. 

If you're struggling to compete in terms of salary, there are other ways to make your company stand out from the competition. Focus on why your company is a great place to work or showcase other benefits besides salary that set you apart.

DO: Learn the ins and outs of salary transparency

Glassdoor has been walking the talk on salary transparency for years. Our eBook is a helpful, informative guide to assist you with creating a salary transparency policy, ensuring an on-time arrival at the intersection of salary transparency and pay equity. Download our eBook today to learn more.