Do you have adblock enabled?
 
If you can read this, either the style sheet didn't load or you have an older browser that doesn't support style sheets. Try clearing your browser cache and refreshing the page.

(Slate)   A discussion on annual salary increases - from someone who clearly doesn't understand inflation or the consumer price index   (slate.com ) divider line
    More: Asinine, inflation  
•       •       •

3081 clicks; posted to Business » on 20 Mar 2014 at 12:30 PM (2 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



155 Comments   (+0 »)
   
View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest

Archived thread

First | « | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | » | Last | Show all
 
2014-03-20 04:07:09 PM  

sendtodave: Dr Dreidel: If productivity goes up, the only people who should make money are the owners, not the rank-and-file who do the work?

Are we talking under capitalism, or socialism?


Let's split the difference (sort of) and say "American capitalism".
 
2014-03-20 04:09:56 PM  
Union, Government worker here.

Wage/Salary is determined by your pay grade, which is tied to the Job title.

We get yearly COLA increases on Jan 1st as part of the contract. Well, we should normally, but our contract has been expired for over two years. Should get a nice bit of back pay when the new one is finally ratified.

We also get yearly pay grade step increases, up to five, implemented on the anniversary of your hire/promotion. I'm currently at pay grade 28, step 4. In September I'll hit step 5. After that you either peter-principle out to retirement/resignation or you get promoted. The maximum pay grade for our union is 31. After that you move up into the supervisory/exempt positions.

/Treated well.
 
2014-03-20 04:10:08 PM  

Dr Dreidel: sendtodave: Dr Dreidel: If productivity goes up, the only people who should make money are the owners, not the rank-and-file who do the work?

Are we talking under capitalism, or socialism?

Let's split the difference (sort of) and say "American capitalism".


Cream rises to the top.  So does money.
 
2014-03-20 04:10:12 PM  

TheSelphie: I'm out if my boss doesn't give me a substantial raise after starting my pay under market and then giving me the standard, everyone gets it 2% increases after two years.  She knows this and I'm pretty much essential as far as she's concerned, but it's been a week since the discussion and I haven't heard anything.  When do I put up a racket, assuming I don't get a hard job offer from another company by then (I have a few prospects)?


If it's been a week and things haven't been unusually hectic, it is time for a gentle reminder that you're waiting for an answer.  Maybe ask her if she is free next week to have a follow up conversation about the meeting.  That assumes you're willing to walk next week, though, if the answer is no raise.
 
2014-03-20 04:11:05 PM  

Nexzus: Union, Government worker here.


Your existence wastes hard earned taxpayer money.
 
2014-03-20 04:12:23 PM  
She's got a whole series of advice for middle managers/executives over at Inc.  Most of it painfully obvious and incredibly pretentious.  Trite.  Do people really get paid to write stuff like this?
 
2014-03-20 04:19:13 PM  

sendtodave: Dr Dreidel: If productivity goes up, the only people who should make money are the owners, not the rank-and-file who do the work?

Are we talking under capitalism, or socialism?


The answer is the same under both.

It depends whether that increased productivity translates to higher demand for the relevant labor. (Assuming ownership and labor are the only two things we're talking about, excluding a company that makes equipment that increases productivity for example.)
 
kab
2014-03-20 04:21:02 PM  
Wages stopped being tied to productivity the minute the idea of 'salary' was created.
 
2014-03-20 04:24:23 PM  

sendtodave: Dr Dreidel: sendtodave: Dr Dreidel: If productivity goes up, the only people who should make money are the owners, not the rank-and-file who do the work?

Are we talking under capitalism, or socialism?

Let's split the difference (sort of) and say "American capitalism".

Cream rises to the top.  So does money.


So then what incentive is there for me to work any harder than the barest of minima? I'm not going to do any better if the company does, so why bother at all? It's incentive for me to find ways to not do anything, rather than incentive to actually produce for the company (who, by the way, demand my full loyalty).

I wouldn't expect all $90k to go to the workers, but I would expect that some significant portion of it does. The lion's share will hopefully go to reinvestment (as it should). and what happens next is where I have the problem: it goes to exec compensation, and maybe - MAYBE, if it was a really good year that can't be hidden from the books, and if the boss isn't an asshammer (the chances of which, collectively, sit around 10%) - some nominal sum tossed to the workers.

Case in point: I made an orientation video for my old company (to remove the need to have "expensive" HR people talk at new hires for 8-10 hours their first 2 days of work). I wrote the script, recorded the VO, mixed/produced it, and made it available on the corporate intranet. I did this mostly by working 2 month's worth of weekends (to have a quiet space to record). My bonus? $200.

Not that I'd spit on $200 (and I did enjoy spending it on a new bass), but that's approximately what they saved on the next hire (singular). It would have been nice if the bonus (which I wasn't even expecting) was in some way commensurate with the effort and the savings.

// looking back, 24 year old me thought $200 was a good bonus
// a useless VP got a $10k bonus a few years after - no one's sure what she did to earn it
// that company's gone from 120 people 3 years ago to 4, and they're about to go tits-up entirely
// good riddance to bad rubbish
 
2014-03-20 04:35:44 PM  

Dr Dreidel: So then what incentive is there for me to work any harder than the barest of minima?


Welcome to Fark.

Also the global economy.

What is China's incentive to only build cheap crap?  What is Wal*Mart's incentive to run everyone out of business to sell crap cheap?

What is a CEOs incentive to lay off thousands of workers? What is the incentive of a shoddily trained H-1b writing your code?  Etc. Etc.

Good, fast, cheap.

Doing the bare minimal and winning on price and speed is still winning.  Looks good next quarter, even if the 5 year timeline sinks the company.  Its enough to get a bonus, get out, and brag how much money you saved by firing everyone and replacing them with peasants to make your junk and bad software.

Honestly, no, I don't like it.  But that is American capitalism.
 
2014-03-20 04:42:58 PM  

sendtodave: Honestly, no, I don't like it. But that is American capitalism.


On that, we can agree.
 
2014-03-20 04:43:12 PM  
Is this the thread where people who have never run so much as a lemonade stand spout off about how much better they could run a business than the people who now run them?
 
2014-03-20 04:44:41 PM  
I'm going to go out on a limb and guess that he didn't really differentiate between a cost of living adjustment and a "pay raise".

And I generally do expect that I'll be compensated similarly each year for similar worked performed. So a 1% cost of living adjustment doesn't seem at all crazy to me. I do not expect annual 5-10% pay raises unless I'm gaining that much more repsonsibility/authority/whatever.

Now, I could argue that an annual pay raise makes sense if you veiw it as it's always going to cost more to bring in a more experienced employee from the outside, but I'm not even going there.

So cost of living adjustments are good, but automatic salary increases perhaps less so.
 
2014-03-20 04:45:45 PM  
Looks like I was wrong. This appears to be the thread where people who, all else being equal, will pick the product that costs less biatch about people who, all else being equal, will pick the employee who costs less.
 
2014-03-20 04:46:49 PM  

DrPainMD: Is this the thread where people who have never run so much as a lemonade stand spout off about how much better they could run a business than the people who now run them?


Yes, this is a Fark.com thread.  Obviously.
 
2014-03-20 04:48:57 PM  

DrPainMD: Looks like I was wrong. This appears to be the thread where people who, all else being equal, will pick the product that costs less biatch about people who, all else being equal, will pick the employee who costs less.


Employees aren't, like, things, man!  They're not products.

They're people!

You can't put a value on people!

/but your boss can
 
2014-03-20 05:00:38 PM  

Marcus Aurelius: Wages must be based only on productivity.

So the CEO is only going to get paid 10 times as much as a secretary?

They're not going to like that.


No, you clearly didn't understand what the article said. At all.
 
2014-03-20 05:16:32 PM  

Fubini: rumpelstiltskin: If you're a responsible adult and don't spend more than about 20% of your income on goods and services for consumption, then inflation and the CPI really shouldn't have much to do with your annual salary discussions.

You don't seem to understand how inflation works.

If you rent, you can expect your rent (roughly) to go up with inflation.

If you own a home, you can (roughly) expect all your utilities and services to go up with inflation, as well as any home repair materials and labor costs.

If you drive a car or take public transit, you can (roughly) expect the cost of transportation to go up with inflation.

Certain sectors lag behind or jump ahead when it comes to inflationary costs, but in aggregate, every dollar you spend is (roughly) affected by inflation. That means that the only portion of your income that isn't affected by inflation is whatever you save and don't spend.

Ultimately, the business is the one who is "purchasing" the labor of the employee. Why shouldn't their costs go up with inflation? The only reason we haven't been having raises is because the labor pool is saturating.


Everything you mentioned is a "good or service for consumption", so I think I covered it.
CPI is a particular measure of inflation, which, despite some shortcomings, attempts to measure the price change in all goods and services for consumption. So I don't get your complaint. You seem to get it in the end, but it's not just savings which isn't affected, it's also spending on assets which may have the same price level as the previous period. Out of favor equity classes, for example. Still, yeah, it means you're not spending most of your income on your daily survival or pleasure. That's the point.
I guess the answer to "why shouldn't their costs go up with inflation" is, "why should their costs go up with inflation". The wage level and the price level are two distinct things, and while there's surely a relation between them, whatever it is, it's more complicated than we understand.
 
2014-03-20 05:24:02 PM  

mjohnson71: From 2000 to 2007 it was this way at my work:
"Needs improvement" on review = 1% raise
"Meets requirements" = 2% raise
"Exceeds expectations" = 3% raise.

Then the Great Recession hit and in 2008 they changed the breaks to .5%, 1.25% and 2%. Then they took away all raises for '10 to '12. When they gave raises back in '13 you'd think the bosses were dying around here.


Admittedly, there was actual deflation in 2009 and inflation has been abnormally low since then, so this isn't as bad as it actually looks at first glance.
 
2014-03-20 05:42:42 PM  

sendtodave: DrPainMD: Looks like I was wrong. This appears to be the thread where people who, all else being equal, will pick the product that costs less biatch about people who, all else being equal, will pick the employee who costs less.

Employees aren't, like, things, man!  They're not products.

They're people!

You can't put a value on people!

/but your boss can


Every time you pick the product that, all else being equal, costs less, you are putting a value on people.
 
2014-03-20 05:50:54 PM  

DrPainMD: sendtodave: DrPainMD: Looks like I was wrong. This appears to be the thread where people who, all else being equal, will pick the product that costs less biatch about people who, all else being equal, will pick the employee who costs less.

Employees aren't, like, things, man!  They're not products.

They're people!

You can't put a value on people!

/but your boss can

Every time you pick the product that, all else being equal, costs less, you are putting a value on people.


Not necessarily.  You may be putting a value on more efficient production techniques, cheaper suppliers, lower profit margin, etc.  It isn't necessarily coming out of the employee's pockets.  Labor isn't the sole factor in any price.
 
2014-03-20 05:58:12 PM  

obenchainr: It isn't necessarily coming out of the employee's pockets.


Of course it is.  They're not giving the extra profit realized by their low cost labor back to the Chinese workers, are they?

They're barely giving any more to their US staff.

No, they're voting themselves raises and pocketing the difference.  Which is exactly what you'd expect them to so.
 
2014-03-20 06:09:57 PM  
Productivity has been steadily increasing for years, while the cost of living has been going up faster than inflation in many areas and pay has remained stagnant for the last 30. It's quite clear that paying employees is not a priority for any employer. Capitalism is broken in its current form, and this man's arguments are broken from the ground up.

Unions must come back in force, or we need government regulations that force employers to pay their employees significantly more, or pitchforks must be productively inserted through the anus and out through the mouth.

I contend employee pay should be close to the maximum an employer can pay, and we shift the focus of our economic development from people supporting capitalism to capitalism supporting people.
 
kab
2014-03-20 06:21:08 PM  

DrPainMD: Looks like I was wrong. This appears to be the thread where people who, all else being equal, will pick the product that costs less biatch about people who, all else being equal, will pick the employee who costs less.


It's almost as if folks who lose ground financially (given stagnant wages vs inflation) are forced to buy with price in mind above all else.

No, that couldn't be it.
 
2014-03-20 06:33:04 PM  
"We strive to hire exceptional talent!"
"Our pay and benefits are in-line with industry standards!"

The goal of every corporation is to maintain a stable of dedicated, hard working, highly motivated, apathetic serfs.
 
2014-03-20 06:51:31 PM  

WhoIsNotInMyKitchen: "We strive to hire exceptional talent!"
"Our pay and benefits are in-line with industry standards!"


The goal of every corporation is to maintain a stable of dedicated, hard working, highly motivated, apathetic serfs.


Corporate speak makes me want to punch people in suits. Although, I'm unsure who I loathe more, the people that go around touting exceptionalism and positivity to workers they exploit, or the obsequious employees that lap it up so they too can live the good life going from 10 dollars an hour to 11.
 
2014-03-20 07:04:53 PM  

Dr Dreidel: Fark_Guy_Rob: I've had a few jobs where productivity went up, but it had nothing to do with us workers. I wouldn't expect a raise in those situations.

"Kiss ass while you biatch so you can get rich
While your boss gets richer off you"

If productivity goes up, the only people who should make money are the owners, not the rank-and-file who do the work?

Management lays out $10 grand for new computers, which kicks productivity up, which increases revenues $100 grand (over the same period last year). Where does that extra $90,000 go? Who "deserves" it more - management who threw money at the problem, or the workers who actually solved it?


Whoever owns the company.

That's what being an employee is all about.  You bring your talent, skills, knowledge, labor, whatever.....and they pay you.  As an employee, I do NOT have a stake in the company.  If the company losses money, I don't care.  Pay me, or I'm gone.  If the company makes a lot of money, I don't care.  The owners are assuming the risk of either making or losing money.  Me?  I get a paycheck at an agreed upon rate.

The rate I get should reflect what it costs to get another person just like me to do the job.  There is no reason to pay me more than X if other people as skilled as me can do the same job for less than X, all other things being equal.

Let's say I am a delivery driver.  And the going rate for a skilled/trained delivery driver in my area is $25 an hour (I have no idea, just guessing).  If the company spends $10 million on a fancy GPS tracking/routing system that increases productivity so that drivers are more productive....it doesn't matter.  The driver is just as replaceable as ever.  Another skilled/trained delivery driver in the area can show up and, with that fancy system, be just as productive as the last driver.

The driver shouldn't get a raise for doing his job, unless he has a very unique employment contract.

The flip side is 100% true too.  If my boss tells me to do something stupid, like drive around the parking lot for 8 hours - it doesn't matter either.  I should still get paid.  I've agreed to do my job, as instructed, for a wage.  If management has me do stupid stuff, I get paid the same wage.  If management has me do really smart stuff, by giving me new tools or improving the process, I get paid the same wage.

If a particularly delivery driver is measurably better than the average $25 an hour guy you can replace him with, then (and only then) does it make sense to pay him more than $25.
 
2014-03-20 07:26:06 PM  

sendtodave: Altman: sendtodave: Are you doing more than you were before to justify the pay increase?

Good.

Are you doing about the same amount of work as you were the previous year? Then you should get paid the same as the previous year.

What, you think your labor is magically worth more or something?

Inflation erodes your wages some amount, lets say 2-5% every year.  Should I do 2-5% less work every year if I don't get a raise?  No?  Then shut the fark up.

No, you should do the same amount of work and eat that loss.

If you aren't doing more work than the last year, you're still a lazy go nowhere.


Sounds like you think everyone in the world who works 40 hours is worth the same pay. Sounds like you think experience and knowledge are worth nothing. Sounds like you're very smart and have really thought this through.
 
2014-03-20 07:35:37 PM  
Yeah, the person that wrote this is an idiot.

You get what you pay for.  It's an old adage, but it still holds weight.
 
2014-03-20 07:49:40 PM  

Fark_Guy_Rob: Dr Dreidel: Fark_Guy_Rob: I've had a few jobs where productivity went up, but it had nothing to do with us workers. I wouldn't expect a raise in those situations.

"Kiss ass while you biatch so you can get rich
While your boss gets richer off you"

If productivity goes up, the only people who should make money are the owners, not the rank-and-file who do the work?

Management lays out $10 grand for new computers, which kicks productivity up, which increases revenues $100 grand (over the same period last year). Where does that extra $90,000 go? Who "deserves" it more - management who threw money at the problem, or the workers who actually solved it?

Whoever owns the company.

That's what being an employee is all about.  You bring your talent, skills, knowledge, labor, whatever.....and they pay you.  As an employee, I do NOT have a stake in the company.  If the company losses money, I don't care.  Pay me, or I'm gone.  If the company makes a lot of money, I don't care.  The owners are assuming the risk of either making or losing money.  Me?  I get a paycheck at an agreed upon rate.

The rate I get should reflect what it costs to get another person just like me to do the job.  There is no reason to pay me more than X if other people as skilled as me can do the same job for less than X, all other things being equal.

Let's say I am a delivery driver.  And the going rate for a skilled/trained delivery driver in my area is $25 an hour (I have no idea, just guessing).  If the company spends $10 million on a fancy GPS tracking/routing system that increases productivity so that drivers are more productive....it doesn't matter.  The driver is just as replaceable as ever.  Another skilled/trained delivery driver in the area can show up and, with that fancy system, be just as productive as the last driver.

The driver shouldn't get a raise for doing his job, unless he has a very unique employment contract.

The flip side is 100% true too.  If my boss tells me to do something s ...


That's the flawed logic of the status quo and it's not working out so well.
 
2014-03-20 07:58:53 PM  

MayoSlather: That's the flawed logic of the status quo and it's not working out so well.


That is a description of reality.

Just because you wish math didn't work that way won't change reality.
 
2014-03-20 08:02:53 PM  

BMFPitt: MayoSlather: That's the flawed logic of the status quo and it's not working out so well.

That is a description of reality.

Just because you wish math didn't work that way won't change reality.


Avarice is math?
 
2014-03-20 08:16:15 PM  

sendtodave: TheSelphie: I'm out if my boss doesn't give me a substantial raise after starting my pay under market and then giving me the standard, everyone gets it 2% increases after two years.  She knows this and I'm pretty much essential as far as she's concerned, but it's been a week since the discussion and I haven't heard anything.  When do I put up a racket, assuming I don't get a hard job offer from another company by then (I have a few prospects)?

Are you doing more than you were before to justify the pay increase?

Good.

Are you doing about the same amount of work as you were the previous year?  Then you should get paid the same as the previous year.

What, you think your labor is magically worth more or something?


The same amount of money as received in the previous year is worth less due to inflation. By your logic someone who is doing the same type and amount of work they were in 1980 should still be getting the $300 per week they were getting back then.
 
2014-03-20 08:24:31 PM  

Altman: Voiceofreason01: Besides, inflation costs an employee 2-5% per year, if the're not getting at least that much of a raise then they're essentially taking a pay cut.

Didnt you read what Send to Dave said?  You should magically eat that pay cut and be happy the Lords and Ladies are still paying you at all!

Meanwhile, not keeping wages steady with inflation costs taxpayers bookoo bucks in food stamps, EITC, etc etc...


On a larger scale it also reduces the ability of consumers to buy the products the companies are selling. If employees real wages are being eroded their ability to buy goods and services is also eroded.
 
kab
2014-03-20 08:37:07 PM  

Fark_Guy_Rob: As an employee, I do NOT have a stake in the company.


A fundamental flaw with how capitalism is currently exercised in this country.
 
2014-03-20 08:54:17 PM  

Dr Dreidel: Whenever it's THEIR salaries under discussion, it's "the market" setting their wages, and they're just helplessly going along to get along.

Whenever it's OUR wages under discussion, what have you done to deserve it, serf?


You believe these things are somehow different?
 
2014-03-20 09:15:02 PM  
Marcus Aurelius: FTA: 'Wages must be based only on productivity.'

Then the entire country is owed about thirty years worth of back pay?

www.motherjones.com
 
2014-03-20 09:24:39 PM  

sendtodave: TheSelphie: I'm out if my boss doesn't give me a substantial raise after starting my pay under market and then giving me the standard, everyone gets it 2% increases after two years.  She knows this and I'm pretty much essential as far as she's concerned, but it's been a week since the discussion and I haven't heard anything.  When do I put up a racket, assuming I don't get a hard job offer from another company by then (I have a few prospects)?

Are you doing more than you were before to justify the pay increase?

Good.

Are you doing about the same amount of work as you were the previous year?  Then you should get paid the same as the previous year.

What, you think your labor is magically worth more or something?


If they can get paid more somewhere else, then yes.

Companies show no loyalty and will downsize/outsource/offshore at the drop of a hat. If they can get cheaper work elsewhere they will.

Why should employees show any loyalty if they can get paid more elsewhere?
 
2014-03-20 09:32:08 PM  

Flint Ironstag: Why should employees show any loyalty if they can get paid more elsewhere?


Who is it that you think is saying anyone should turn down job offers that they feel are better than their current job?
 
2014-03-20 09:37:24 PM  
The only thing this article proves is that America is still full of temporarily-embarrassed millionaires, and that someone who runs a jewelry business thinks they're on the level of corporations.  Not only is this person an ass, they're more of an ass than most actual large businesses because she thinks she's one of them.  Her and her shiatty little company.

We are truly farked in the head.
 
2014-03-20 09:38:30 PM  

TheSelphie: youmightberight: TheSelphie: I'm out if my boss doesn't give me a substantial raise after starting my pay under market and then giving me the standard, everyone gets it 2% increases after two years.  She knows this and I'm pretty much essential as far as she's concerned, but it's been a week since the discussion and I haven't heard anything.  When do I put up a racket, assuming I don't get a hard job offer from another company by then (I have a few prospects)?

Now. You engage her in conversation every week on Friday right before lunch and make sure to update her on people that are recruiting YOU. If you're having to hunt for a position I'd leave things alone until you have a legitimate job offer and then tell her counter it or I'm out.

Headhunters are contacting me on their own regularly, though the position for which I have a 2nd interview was one I applied to.  The 2nd interview is pretty soon though, so if I can get an offer from that, it might be worth it just to wait until that happens.  It still is frustrating just waiting day after day when you know you are getting f'd in the a, but I guess I gotta deal.


If it was me, and everything else being equal, I'd take a higher offer and leave even if my current employer suddenly matched it. That just shows they could have done it at any time but chose not to because they could take advantage of you. Screw them.

Unless they came up with a far better offer tell them you're leaving and that it is because of what they did.

/But that's just me.
 
2014-03-20 09:59:44 PM  
What a bunch of lying shiat.  It's been well established that individual employee productivity continually increases over time, yet wages have been stagnant or even declining -especially in comparison to inflation and COLA.

FTA:
Wages must be based only on productivity.

Oh, really?  So naturally when a company lays off significant percentages of its staff, those that remain who are expected to maintain the overall productivity, despite fewer numbers, will see greater compensation for the expected increased individual productivity?

What a lying POS.

According to this jackasses philosophy, the next time your colleague calls in sick leaving the business short staffed, the employees should either NOT work to pick up that productivity slack, or insist on a pay increase to do so -because he endorses pay for productivity.
 
2014-03-20 10:29:26 PM  

Fark_Guy_Rob: llortcM_yllort: Fark_Guy_Rob: I'm not saying don't give them raises.  I'm saying tie it to there performance, ability, skillset in the current marketplace.

Inflation and cost of living isn't relevant.  What they can earn somewhere else, is.

However, the nature of inflation and cost of living means what the same level of productivity is worth should usually increase in terms of nominal dollar amounts (as in, not inflation adjusted).  It also means the market rate should (usually) go up in nominal terms if productivity remains constant.  This, of course, assumes that performance is easily measurable and has a direct effect on the profitability of the company.  The truth is that the concept of "worth" is so nebulous in many cases that figuring out how to "pay someone what they're worth" is next to impossible so instead it becomes "paying what you can get away with" versus "getting paid what you can get."

I totally agree, it's very hard to objectively measure someone's 'worth'.

But I feel like tying it to inflation and/or cost of living is admitting failure and giving up.  At the same time, in the places I've worked, I really never had much trouble having a really good idea which co-workers were handy to have around and which ones weren't.  In most cases, I never knew how much anyone was paid, but certainly, this is information people at the company should have access to.  Lots of jobs aren't easy....managing employee salaries should take effort, but it's the single most important thing an employee looks for (at least, nearly all employees).


Okay, so we pay the better people more.  How much more?  What is a good accountant worth?  What is a bad accountant worth?  What's the reason for the difference?  It's one thing to say "pay the better employees more," but you can't just put down "more" on a pay stub.  At some point you need to quantify that difference in quality or just pay what you can get away with.

In some cases, inflation goes up and salaries in that same market go up.  And in that case, I'd agree an employee that was worth 30k last year would be worth 30k plus inflation.  But in lots of places the cost of living goes up and wages don't.  Or inflation goes up and wages don't.  So giving a raise across the board, potentially, puts your employees into the category of being overpaid.  Overpaid employees don't leave.

If all we are basing it on is market rate, then isn't that "paying what you can get away with" versus "getting paid what you can get"?  Because if we are basing worth solely on how much it would cost to replace the worker, then isn't "what you're worth" basically "paying what you can get away with"?  There's nothing wrong with that, but that seems to be what you're implying.
 
2014-03-20 10:56:32 PM  

Communist_Manifesto: Wages must be based only on productivity.


Wages are so far disconnected from anything based on something concrete like productivity that it's not even funny. Wages are overall set at the market level. How does one determine what the market is paying? You buy salary surveys from consulting companies (Towers Watson, Aon Hewitt, Mercer etc.) Then your name and job title/job code are taken from your companies HR database and matched to the market based on vague factors like job descriptions. Comp people are lazy, so they're more than likely just matching the job by title. Then they aggregate the data, and set "market appropriate" pay ranges for the jobs. Doesn't matter if the place would farking sink without you, you're probably not going to get above market value. Sure you might get a decent raise, but it will still be within the pay range set by the surveys.



I'm not sure how true that is.

according to surveys like Robert Half, average pay of a Financial Analyst with 3-5 years experience is about $75k, with a 25-40% adjustment for the NYC metro area (25% for NJ suburbs, and 40% for Manhattan).

in my last job search here (thankfully over) I was struggling to find one of these roles that topped $80k, even in Manhattan. I found salaries in Chicago & Detroit to be the same or slightly lower, despite the immensely stupid cost of living here.
 
2014-03-21 07:14:55 AM  

kab: Fark_Guy_Rob: As an employee, I do NOT have a stake in the company.

A fundamental flaw with how capitalism is currently exercised in this country.


It may or may not be a flaw.

Still, the simple truth is, I ONLY ever hear employees yelling that they deserve more.  I've never heard an employee say, 'Well, the company didn't sell enough widgets this quarter, they should cut my pay 10%'.  There are certainly positions where your salary is tied to the success or failure of the company.  That's a viable option.  Likewise, starting your own company, directly ties your income to the success or failure of the company.  It's risk verse reward.  Employees risk less, and they *should* have less upside.

People want low risk and the potential for more reward.

The last house I bought was a bank owned foreclosure in horrible condition.  I renovated it, sold it, and made a bunch of money.  But certain things, by law in my area, required a professional.  The electrician I hired, should get paid based on what an electrician reasonably gets paid in that market.  He's doing the same job regardless.  If I made a lot of money on my 'flip' (for lack of a better word), it hardly seems fair for him to turn around and say, 'I HELPED YOU FLIP THAT HOUSE.  I WANT 25% MORE PAY'.  And it would be equally unfair for me to go back to him and say, 'The market dropped.  I couldn't find a buyer.  I lost 20k on that house.  Since we were both involved, both teammates, I'm going to need 25% of your pay back for the electrical work you did.  I'm not pointing fingers, but that was part of the house and the house didn't sell'.

Some employees work like that.  Most don't.  If your employment contract DOESN'T explicitly entitle you to profit sharing of some sort, you should expect EXACTLY ZERO profit sharing.
 
2014-03-21 08:07:44 AM  

quizzical: TheSelphie: I'm out if my boss doesn't give me a substantial raise after starting my pay under market and then giving me the standard, everyone gets it 2% increases after two years.  She knows this and I'm pretty much essential as far as she's concerned, but it's been a week since the discussion and I haven't heard anything.  When do I put up a racket, assuming I don't get a hard job offer from another company by then (I have a few prospects)?

If it's been a week and things haven't been unusually hectic, it is time for a gentle reminder that you're waiting for an answer.  Maybe ask her if she is free next week to have a follow up conversation about the meeting.  That assumes you're willing to walk next week, though, if the answer is no raise.


That's about what I did. Once I decided it was "time" I went to the boss and had the talk. The whole thing complete with here's how much money I made you last year, and in fact here's how much I made you over the last 5 years, here are points at which I saved you money, and here are the points where I would have saved money but didn't get listened to, and so it cost you more than it should have. And here is what people in my position who do what I do make elsewhere. When I got no response, I got serious about finding something new. After I had an offer in hand I went back to the boss and showed it to him and told him that here was his chance to offer something to at least try to keep me. He didn't even bother to counter so I left for the new job at 25% more pay.

Now, people might say that since he didn't bother to counter, that I wasn't worth what I was asking for, but the reality is that he was constantly losing and hiring contractors for 2x PLUS what I was making. They underperformed, didn't have institutional knowledge or a stake in the community or culture of the company. Those of us who were permanent employees frequently had to redo their work when they left often in less time than the contractors were initially given to complete. We did it though, and the thanks we got was usually nothing, but occasionally was around half of inflation (about every third year we would get about half of a raise) It's pretty sucky to have to train someone to help you but who you know is getting paid more because "market conditions"

Make yourself part of that market. Good luck.
 
2014-03-21 08:25:53 AM  
I appreciate all of the feedback in this thread, it's great.  Unfortunately new s*** has come to light about my job that I don't want to risk talking about here that, at best, means I'm leaving as soon as I find another job, or, at worst, could get me fired for retaliation as a whistleblower (which is illegal obviously, but like I said, I'm one foot out the door anyway).
 
2014-03-21 08:55:57 AM  

sendtodave: What, you think your labor is magically worth more or something?


Sure is, and it ain't magic.  It's called inflation.

Change in income = raise - inflation.

Plenty of companies are more than willing to pay you less year over year because you're too stupid to realize it, or too screwed to do anything about it.
 
2014-03-21 09:14:15 AM  

Altman: rumpelstiltskin: I was being a little obnoxious with the responsible bit. I don't think "most" people in America can afford to be "responsible", the way I've said it. More than are could be, but if it comes to most, it won't get there by much.

Yeah, but I think a lot of people in major metro areas forget how much lower the cost of living is in other parts of the country.  If you live somewhere cheap and make like $30K a year, you can live well and still be able to sock away a good amount of money each month.


Not sure if high or retarded. I live in east central IL which is pretty f*cking cheap, and $30K a year with no kids/family will get you a car payment, shiat rental domicile and...that's about it.
 
2014-03-21 09:42:16 AM  
Every single company I've worked for has offered my a raise when I resigned. Maybe if they offered more than an one or two percent during my annual review I wouldn't have had a wandering eye to find a better job. MBA types of course will counter with "why would you pay anyone more than they're willing to accept" not understanding things like the costs involved in finding someone new and the loss of institutional knowledge. If you keep paying people the bare minimum, you'll keep getting the bare minimum effort and get the people from the bottom of the labor barrel. Most people chose a career in something other than salary negotiations and aren't interested in spending lots of time and effort on it. All too often changing jobs is simply an easier way of getting a raise than staying in place, even if your current company has a greater economic reason for paying you more than a new company would.

Reminds me of how Wal-Mart has been so successful at cutting labor costs that they can't even stock the shelves with merchandise. They made reducing labor costs more important than selling goods to the public, which is pretty stupid.
 
Displayed 50 of 155 comments

First | « | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | » | Last | Show all

View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest


This thread is archived, and closed to new comments.

Continue Farking
Submit a Link »
On Twitter






In Other Media


  1. Links are submitted by members of the Fark community.

  2. When community members submit a link, they also write a custom headline for the story.

  3. Other Farkers comment on the links. This is the number of comments. Click here to read them.

  4. Click here to submit a link.

Report