Hacker News new | past | comments | ask | show | jobs | submit login

> illegal

The inevitable result of that is the people making bank will be sure to tell you, and ones making low salaries will not. The employer will therefore still know if you're making above or below the usual salary.

Businesses don't like risk (just like employees don't) and hiring a new person poses a lot of risk. It's expensive, and the employee may not work out at all. The more risk there is in hiring someone, the lower the salary offer will be to compensate. Salaries are a proxy for one's value when hiring. Removing that piece of information increases risk, and hence will lower the salary offers.




> The employer will therefore still know if you're making above or below the usual salary.

Thats still way better than being forced to give an exact number. Now the employer has to kinda sorta guess. Instead of getting underpaid by 30%, you might only get underpaid by 20%.


The more an employer has to guess, the more risk there is in hiring someone. Risk is mitigated by lowering the price, i.e. you get a lower offer.

Also, if you wind up getting a salary that's more than you produce for the company, you'll be first in line to get laid off.


> The more an employer has to guess, the more risk there is in hiring someone.

An employees current salary is only barely correlated with a employees skill. They have a multitude of other, much much better factors that they can use to determine if someone is a "risk" or not.

> Also, if you wind up getting a salary that's more than you produce for the company

You are describing something that is close to impossible to measure, for the vast majority of situations. A company does not go around making exact measurements on programmers, and thinking to themselves "Is this person *really 18.2% more effective than the lower paid employee?".

Thats just not how it works. Instead, a person might be 3 times more effective, or half as effective, as the other employees, and salary will be almost entirely unrelated to how much they "produce", which can't really be measure very well anyway.

And this is without even getting into more complicated things, such as sunk costs, and the replacement costs. IE, you may be 10% less effective, but the costs to replace you are equal to 6 months of your salary, so in reality, it makes zero financial sense to do so.

And finally, you are ignoring the fact that an employee can just lie about their previous salary, and there is basically nothing the employer can do about this. I have never, in my life, had someone demand my tax returns, or call up a previous employer to verify my salary, and in many places this can even be illegal. I can just lie about my current salary, and easily get away with, as I have done so multiple times in the past, as well as has many other people that I know.


> I can just lie about my current salary, and easily get away with, as I have done so multiple times in the past, as well as has many other people that I know.

You're not fooling employers, they likely know you and your friends are lying, and discount the offer accordingly. Try bringing a paystub next time, your prospective employer will appreciate it. It's worked out well for me.

There have been some high profile cases of people who've worked for decades for a company, rose to the top echelon, and were discovered to have lied on their resume. They were out the door without their severance package.


> You're not fooling employers, they likely know you and your friends are lying, and discount the offer accordingly.

It's worked out pretty damn well for me and my friends, actually. I've gotten multiple 25% raises, each time by doing that. (Along with a healthy dose of job hopping)

> were discovered to have lied on their resume

I've never lied on my resume. Only about salaries, while talking to someone in negotiations.

That's just how the negotiation games goes. The employer makes blatant lies all the time in negotiations, also.

For the record, I've gone from a starting salary of 100k, when I just got out of college 6 years ago, to where I am today, which is 270k total comp, at a big 5 tech company.

I am pretty happy with those results. Especially so, because I've only ever considered myself to be an average engineer.

Or are you going to try and flatter me by saying that I could have been doing even better than going from 100k to 270k in 6 years? Perhaps. But I'd hardly say that I haven't done alright for myself.


> The employer makes blatant lies all the time in negotiations, also.

I've heard such justifications for submitting fraudulent college applications, cheating in college, doping in sports, etc.

I've done significantly better than my peers with salaries, without lying about it.

Remember that fable about Steve Jobs' dad painting the back of the fence that no one would ever see? My father once told me that honor is what separates men from animals. Honor is what you do when nobody is looking. How much is your honor worth to you? I'm no saint, but wanting my father to be proud of me is worth a lot to me, even though he's passed away.


> I've done significantly better than my peers with salaries, without lying about it.

Thats great. But the other strategy, of engaging in successful negotiation tactics, has also worked out quite well for me.

So it seems like the strategy can be successful.


> people making bank will be sure to tell you

Actually if you work a while and are lucky enough to have done well, you may want to pick a place to work for reasons other than it has the highest salary. In that case you may not want to advertise your salary history because it can scare away employers. It shouldn’t but it does.


>The employer will therefore still know if you're making above or below the usual salary.

Then again if it's illegal to find out, how will they check if your lying or not?




Guidelines | FAQ | Support | API | Security | Lists | Bookmarklet | Legal | Apply to YC | Contact

Search: