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Old 11-18-2015, 12:39 PM
1,378 posts, read 1,123,143 times
Reputation: 2202


Originally Posted by Jeromeville View Post
Yeah, but that's not my problem really... my desired salary would likely be well within their "OK" range. My past salary wouldn't be. I just want to find a way to indicate to them (gracefully) that I am making a career change and not expecting salary based on my past earnings.
You could say something like: "My salary has averaged $xxx in recent years. However, I sense a new and much welcomed challenge in the opportunity with your firm. Therefore, my salary expectations are flexible."
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Old 11-18-2015, 01:24 PM
Location: United States
464 posts, read 664,335 times
Reputation: 767
Originally Posted by MSchemist80 View Post
In the hiring process nowadays if you don't play ball and do whatever HR tells you they just deep 6 your app and declare you a "troublesome" candidate.
While that may be true, giving into their demands is the first step towards eventually surrendering other rights and privacy. It's not that you're troublesome if you refuse to play their game, you're just someone who refuses to be pushed around. So they bury your application, big deal. There's other employers out there.

Withholding the info and saying "no" isn't for everyone. It only requires some spinal fortitude and self-respect which, from reading some posts in these forums, is becoming rarer with each passing day. People seem to sell their souls for the right to be underpaid and overworked.

I've refused my salary history to several employers yet received offers, and subsequently employment, from each.
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Old 11-18-2015, 02:12 PM
Location: Chicago area
8,872 posts, read 13,364,032 times
Reputation: 16084
Then just understate/lie your salary history. Most people inflate their salary history.
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Old 11-18-2015, 02:40 PM
Location: nYC
684 posts, read 505,231 times
Reputation: 334
Originally Posted by Jeromeville View Post
The employer in a job I'm looking at is asking for a salary history in the application. I know why they do this - they want to screen out anyone who'd ask for too much. But I'm in the midst of a career change and I'm not looking for a job that pays what I used to get - nor will I likely be looking to get back to that level in the future (it's not realistic). I also know I probably wouldn't get that much for a job in this field.

How do I sidestep this question? I don't want my application to be rejected outright because of what I *used* to make, which realistically I won't get in this field. I'd prefer to give them a range I'm seeking. Is there a graceful way I can indicate my situation in my cover letter, or should I just include the salary range and be all "la la la I can't hear you" and not give my actual salary history?

You have to tell us the industry your are in. Sometimes they ask for pay stubs or W2s also.

When I fill out job applications I leave salary part blank, or write down arbitrary numbers if I have to. Answering those questions honestly is difficult because of the way we do business. Not every-one does this also, so basically if you tell em to bugger off, and interview else where.

What is it to you, you have told em the the salary you are willing to accept for this job. If they say that the salary raise you are getting is to high, ask them why they are wasting your time, you already mentioned your salary requirements prior to interviewing.
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Old 11-18-2015, 09:34 PM
Location: ohio
2,773 posts, read 1,335,425 times
Reputation: 3148
I would just put in "Competitive".

Thats what 98% of the ads say, so it must be OK.
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Old 11-19-2015, 06:02 AM
Location: HoCo, MD
4,374 posts, read 8,025,997 times
Reputation: 4796
Your situation is unique. If I'm reading this correctly, you're essentially switching careers to one that is less compensated than the one you're coming from. I think the key is to get that point across. Unfortunately, if you are using automated portals, it may or may not give you that option to communicate this unique situation. There is typically a "reason for leaving" or "reason for looking" text box. If that's available, I'd include the info there. Salary history is salary history. I personally wouldn't mixed that with salary requirement unless there is a clear way to explain it.

I think this may also require a different approach altogether. I'd actually rely more on my network and ask around. You are in a good position where you can be a huge asset with your other experience. For this case, is calling the prospective employer to tell your story an option?
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Old 11-19-2015, 12:26 PM
1,250 posts, read 2,997,770 times
Reputation: 1842
Yes, I'm really looking for "assistant" type positions in a new field, so these positions are not going to pay what I was getting after spending X number of years in my former field.

I don't think it's worth lying on a job application to get your foot in the door... that's not how I roll, and it always comes back to bite you in the end. I guess it boils down to, How do I feel about them demanding my salary history up front vs. how interesting do I find this job?

"My salary has averaged X in recent years" seems like a good fudge to include a cover letter, though.
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Old 03-12-2016, 06:54 PM
Location: Charleston SC
102 posts, read 88,930 times
Reputation: 81
I just filled out an application that required me to put my salary history. After graduating from college, I expect to make more than I did working part time on campus. They also wanted me to list the salary I expected. I looked at what other people working for this company made on Glassdoor and figured out what my desired salary is. Will they reject me or lower what they would offer someone else based on my salary history?
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Old 03-13-2016, 06:13 AM
4,074 posts, read 1,746,647 times
Reputation: 8280
The salary question is an awful one no matter what your situation. I work for state government in FL, where we have no state income tax and salaries are insanely low. Even in county and other quasi-state entities the pay is much higher, so providing that information (while it is already public record) can serve to hurt you since they are so deflated. People are only looking to move out because of that. I don't think the salary is a reflection on my value as an employee, just a reflection on how cheap the state is with respect to paying its employees and not giving them raises in years and years.
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Old 03-14-2016, 09:28 AM
Location: Tennessee
23,839 posts, read 17,744,737 times
Reputation: 27886
I would put the past salary on the form, but if there is any room for explanation, explain it in comments.
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