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Do we place too much trust in recruitment?

Too much trust in recruitment? There are growing concerns about the amount of trust we place in recruitment and recruiters.

Do we have too much trust in recruitment?

Does income inequality exist because job applicants trust recruiters too much?

Recruiters and employers require applicants’ unconditional trust. Yet they fail to explain why they are unconditionally fair:

  1. Recruiters know what employers are willing to offer prior to advertising
  2. Applicants want to trust that an advert is a market signal denoting real opportunity. Job seekers don’t want to participate in labour scoping exercises. They are used to determine what the least amount is that applicants are willing to work.
  3. Job applicants trust that when a pay range is not published, it is not to hide an unequal pay vacancy
  4. Applicants trust that recruiters do not contact them simply to conduct market research regarding pay
  5. They trust that recruiters do not use pay information to obstruct an opportunity to discuss the value applicants could bring to an organisation regardless of pay expectations 
  6. Applicants trust that employers have priced the job according to validated policies and procedures
  7. Job applicants trust that current pay has no bearing on what they can justify and negotiate for within or outside of the employers pay range
  8. Applicants trust that when an offer is made it is compliant with policy and unconditionally fair.

Can we afford to Trust in Recruitment?

Recruiting is an essential process in any organization. It helps businesses to find the right employees to fill the vacant positions and achieve their goals. However, in recent years, there has been growing concern about the amount of trust we place in recruitment. One of the issues that have emerged is the unrestricted information that recruiters can collect about compensation.

No Pay Transparency: How do we place our trust in recruitment?

Many job advertisements do not include a pay range, making it difficult for candidates to know what to expect in terms of salary. Recruiters often ask applicants to disclose their pay history and pay expectations, which can be a sensitive and personal topic for many people. This information is often used to determine the candidate’s suitability for the job and the salary they are offered.

The problem with this approach is that it can lead to bias in the recruitment process. For example, if a candidate has a lower pay history, they may be offered a lower salary, even if they are qualified for the job. Similarly, if a candidate’s pay expectations are higher than the company’s budget, they may be eliminated from consideration, even if they are the best candidate for the job.

Pay History Questions are Unfair

Furthermore, the practice of asking for pay history can perpetuate existing pay gaps. If a person has been underpaid in their previous job, this will reflect in their pay history, and they may be offered a lower salary than someone who has been fairly compensated. This can contribute to the wage gap between men and women, as well as other marginalized groups.

Unfair Information Power

It is unfair for a recruiter to have more information about compensation than an applicant during recruitment and wage negotiations. This is because it creates an imbalance of power and can lead to unequal pay. When a recruiter knows more about the salary range for a position than the applicant, they can use that information to their advantage and potentially offer a lower salary than what the applicant is worth.

Furthermore, asking applicants for their pay history and expectations can perpetuate pay inequities. If a person has been underpaid in their previous job, this can reflect in their pay history, and they may be offered a lower salary than someone who has been fairly compensated. This can contribute to the wage gap between men and women, as well as other marginalized groups.

By providing a pay range in job advertisements and avoiding the practice of asking for pay history, employers can promote a fair and equitable recruitment process. This approach helps to level the playing field and reduce bias in the recruitment process. It also allows candidates to negotiate their salary based on their skills and experience, rather than their previous pay. Ultimately, this can lead to a more diverse and inclusive workforce, which can benefit businesses and society as a whole.

Recruitment Pay Secrecy Bans

To address these issues, some states and cities in the United States have banned employers from asking for salary history during the recruitment process. Instead, they require employers to provide a pay range in job advertisements and allow candidates to negotiate their salary based on their skills and experience. This approach helps to level the playing field and reduce bias in the recruitment process.

In conclusion, it is essential to evaluate the amount of trust we place in recruitment and the potential biases that may arise. By providing a pay range in job advertisements and avoiding the practice of asking for pay history, employers can promote a fair and equitable recruitment process. Ultimately, this can lead to a more diverse and inclusive workforce, which can benefit businesses and society as a whole.

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Leonie Hall

Leonie Hall, disruptive thinker and dynamic strategist, is an expert in education, development, quality management and innovation. She has spoken at local and international conferences; and currently works as an independent consultant and content developer. Contact Leonie for a consultation.

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