Should Salary Information Be Confidential?

  • x

    SSC-Insane

    Points: 23478

    Jeff Moden wrote:

    Lynn Pettis wrote:

    x wrote:

    Lynn Pettis wrote:

    x wrote:

    Lynn Pettis wrote:

    x wrote:

    Jeff Moden wrote:

    Eric M Russell wrote:

    If you are an employee of the US federal government, then your salary history is public information.

    Search Federal Employee Salaries

    https://www.fedsdatacenter.com

    7,040,119 entries

    Heh... just one of the many reasons why I won't be a Federal or State employee. 😉

    Ok I give up, what are you trying to hide?

    Why does he have to be hiding anything?  There are people I will tell what I am making and there are people I won't tell.  It comes down to a need to know.

    Well I know, but he seems really disturbed about the federal policy (or for that matter, state policies like I used to work under). These are actually fairly routine policies. I'm interested in the psychology behind his (and your) phobia.

    edit: I'm not saying to disclose it on the web, but would it really be all that difficult to work somewhere that requires this disclosure? What are the downsides?

    Hey, I'm not saying that you guys can necessarily articulate your fears, I was just posting on the off chance that maybe you could. Just curious 🙂

    Are you saying you have a right to know how much I make?  Sorry, but I agree with Jeff on this.  It is my business and the business of the company I for which I work.  My supervisor has no idea how much I make nor do I know how much he makes.  Neither of us as a need to know what either of us make.

    I worked for the military and a government employer.  There I understand that our salaries were public knowledge, at least a salary range.  My exact salary wasn't publicly known as far as I know (seems that may not be completely true based on earlier comments).

    And it isn't a phobia.

    I'm not saying that *I* have a right to know anything, but I did offer up some curiosity on the *why's* of Jeff's (and your) opinion on the editorial topic. I'm not saying I *deserve* answers either, heh actually any steadfast resistance to even that level of introspection is pretty instructive in itself. So its all good here!

    Thanks for your comments!

    You want a why, here is it is in a nut shell. Personal Privacy.

    Precisely.  And, oddly enough, the questions about this are coming from someone that uses the letter "X" for a user name on this forum.

    Well that's different, on one hand we have associates at work who we will be personally familiar with and often work closely together, and on the other hand, we have internet nutjobs.

     

     

     

  • Jeff Moden

    SSC Guru

    Points: 994951

    x wrote:

    Well that's different, on one hand we have associates at work who we will be personally familiar with and often work closely together, and on the other hand, we have internet nutjobs.

    I'm not sure of the meaning of that post as it applies to the subject.  I just found it odd that you're asking if I have something to hide when you're hiding behind literally an "X" user name.  If you think I'm an "internet nutjob" for what I've stated about privacy, then please consider that.

    --Jeff Moden


    RBAR is pronounced "ree-bar" and is a "Modenism" for Row-By-Agonizing-Row.
    First step towards the paradigm shift of writing Set Based code:
    ________Stop thinking about what you want to do to a row... think, instead, of what you want to do to a column.
    "If you think its expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur."--Red Adair
    "Change is inevitable... change for the better is not."
    When you put the right degree of spin on it, the number 3|8 is also a glyph that describes the nature of a DBAs job. 😉

    Helpful Links:
    How to post code problems
    Create a Tally Function (fnTally)

  • x

    SSC-Insane

    Points: 23478

    Jeff Moden wrote:

    x wrote:

    Well that's different, on one hand we have associates at work who we will be personally familiar with and often work closely together, and on the other hand, we have internet nutjobs.

    I'm not sure of the meaning of that post as it applies to the subject.  I just found it odd that you're asking if I have something to hide when you're hiding behind literally an "X" user name.  If you think I'm an "internet nutjob" for what I've stated about privacy, then please consider that.

    Well we were talking about the subject, should salary information be confidential. I'm guessing that you will not share it with anybody, and you make no difference between strangers on the internet and your close associates with whom you work daily and that's fine! I would (and have) share salary info with associates I work closely with and heck friends for that matter, but if I feel like interacting differently with unmoderated forums on the internet then maybe I will. If you feel that's somehow contradictory, thats fine, I really don't mind 🙂

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

  • Jeff Moden

    SSC Guru

    Points: 994951

    x wrote:

    Jeff Moden wrote:

    x wrote:

    Well that's different, on one hand we have associates at work who we will be personally familiar with and often work closely together, and on the other hand, we have internet nutjobs.

    I'm not sure of the meaning of that post as it applies to the subject.  I just found it odd that you're asking if I have something to hide when you're hiding behind literally an "X" user name.  If you think I'm an "internet nutjob" for what I've stated about privacy, then please consider that.

    Well we were talking about the subject, should salary information be confidential. I'm guessing that you will not share it with anybody, and you make no difference between strangers on the internet and your close associates with whom you work daily and that's fine! I would (and have) share salary info with associates I work closely with and heck friends for that matter, but if I feel like interacting differently with unmoderated forums on the internet then maybe I will. If you feel that's somehow contradictory, thats fine, I really don't mind 🙂

    Correct.  IMHO, it's especially important that close associates not share salary information.  In the past, I've found that it creates unnecessary problems between associations even for truly petty differences.  As some have stated on this thread, even my immediate supervisors don't know what my salary is.  It just works out better in the long run.

    So, why are you hiding behind the letter "X"? 😉

    --Jeff Moden


    RBAR is pronounced "ree-bar" and is a "Modenism" for Row-By-Agonizing-Row.
    First step towards the paradigm shift of writing Set Based code:
    ________Stop thinking about what you want to do to a row... think, instead, of what you want to do to a column.
    "If you think its expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur."--Red Adair
    "Change is inevitable... change for the better is not."
    When you put the right degree of spin on it, the number 3|8 is also a glyph that describes the nature of a DBAs job. 😉

    Helpful Links:
    How to post code problems
    Create a Tally Function (fnTally)

  • Matt Miller (4)

    SSC Guru

    Points: 124185

    I think thre's a rather sizeable difference between associates informally sharing salary info, and a company that openly publishes/discloses all salaries.  In the first case  - since the company isn't on board with it all it will do is as you say: possibly make some folks upset about it and cause divisions on the team. On the other hand - a company that IS willing to go through disclosure would presumably be ready to discuss those differences and stand behind why they might be there.  Which frankly sounds like a reasonably healthy stance: I'd rather know where I stand and WHY I stand where I stand in the scale.  That doesn't necessarily mean that I would welcome a full list being posted broadly (i.e. on public forms, the internet), but again - posting ACTUAL salaries (without names) for companies by position should be required

    In this kind of unequal relationship where nothing is to be disclosed, the company holds all control over the discussion.  Not getting clear feedback or allowing for such things doesn't really help us in the long run, no matter how cozy we might think our positions are.

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Your lack of planning does not constitute an emergency on my part...unless you're my manager...or a director and above...or a really loud-spoken end-user..All right - what was my emergency again?

  • Jonathan AC Roberts

    SSCoach

    Points: 16973

    Our employer once told us that there was a ban on telling anyone your salary. Later it became illegal (in the uk) for an employer to enforce such a rule. It's in an employer's interest to stop people being open about their salary as if two people were doing the same job but getting different salaries it would lead to one of them demanding a rise. It's been shown that in companies where salaries are open there is a decrease in the salary differential between jobs and there is more equality. I wouldn't mind if my salary was made public information inside my company just so long as everyone else's was too.

  • x

    SSC-Insane

    Points: 23478

    Jeff Moden wrote:

    x wrote:

    Jeff Moden wrote:

    x wrote:

    Well that's different, on one hand we have associates at work who we will be personally familiar with and often work closely together, and on the other hand, we have internet nutjobs.

    I'm not sure of the meaning of that post as it applies to the subject.  I just found it odd that you're asking if I have something to hide when you're hiding behind literally an "X" user name.  If you think I'm an "internet nutjob" for what I've stated about privacy, then please consider that.

    Well we were talking about the subject, should salary information be confidential. I'm guessing that you will not share it with anybody, and you make no difference between strangers on the internet and your close associates with whom you work daily and that's fine! I would (and have) share salary info with associates I work closely with and heck friends for that matter, but if I feel like interacting differently with unmoderated forums on the internet then maybe I will. If you feel that's somehow contradictory, thats fine, I really don't mind 🙂

    Correct.  IMHO, it's especially important that close associates not share salary information.  In the past, I've found that it creates unnecessary problems between associations even for truly petty differences.  As some have stated on this thread, even my immediate supervisors don't know what my salary is.  It just works out better in the long run.

    So, why are you hiding behind the letter "X"? 😉

    Well that's the thing, I was curious about the problems disclosure caused and the nature of the issues. If I found a compelling argument for either side, I could certainly use this for future reference. I really have found that the whys matter, its why I ask, heck I've learned much by digging into the reasons and I fully recommend it. Heck, with as much salary disclosure as seen with public positions, there's clearly value on the other side. Its ok if I don't feel fully enlightened by the seemingly defensive responses, there does seem to be more to the story, but maybe its ok to not prod further and so I'm good with it.

    As for "X", I figure if I don't fit in well with any given community, I'd probably enjoy posting with a pseudonym more. Originally I was like "oooh my peers in a given technology, I should get along just fine" but that didn't last long LOL.

  • Jeff Moden

    SSC Guru

    Points: 994951

    x wrote:

    Jeff Moden wrote:

    x wrote:

    Jeff Moden wrote:

    x wrote:

    Well that's different, on one hand we have associates at work who we will be personally familiar with and often work closely together, and on the other hand, we have internet nutjobs.

    I'm not sure of the meaning of that post as it applies to the subject.  I just found it odd that you're asking if I have something to hide when you're hiding behind literally an "X" user name.  If you think I'm an "internet nutjob" for what I've stated about privacy, then please consider that.

    Well we were talking about the subject, should salary information be confidential. I'm guessing that you will not share it with anybody, and you make no difference between strangers on the internet and your close associates with whom you work daily and that's fine! I would (and have) share salary info with associates I work closely with and heck friends for that matter, but if I feel like interacting differently with unmoderated forums on the internet then maybe I will. If you feel that's somehow contradictory, thats fine, I really don't mind 🙂

    Correct.  IMHO, it's especially important that close associates not share salary information.  In the past, I've found that it creates unnecessary problems between associations even for truly petty differences.  As some have stated on this thread, even my immediate supervisors don't know what my salary is.  It just works out better in the long run.

    So, why are you hiding behind the letter "X"? 😉

    Well that's the thing, I was curious about the problems disclosure caused and the nature of the issues. If I found a compelling argument for either side, I could certainly use this for future reference. I really have found that the whys matter, its why I ask, heck I've learned much by digging into the reasons and I fully recommend it. Heck, with as much salary disclosure as seen with public positions, there's clearly value on the other side. Its ok if I don't feel fully enlightened by the seemingly defensive responses, there does seem to be more to the story, but maybe its ok to not prod further and so I'm good with it.

    As for "X", I figure if I don't fit in well with any given community, I'd probably enjoy posting with a pseudonym more. Originally I was like "oooh my peers in a given technology, I should get along just fine" but that didn't last long LOL.

    Perhaps it has something to do with the questions you ask like "What have you got to hide" and alluding that people on this thread are "internet nutjobs" that have alienated you.

    Wanna start over?  There are some awesome people on this site that will welcome you with open arms if you change the tone a bit.

    --Jeff Moden


    RBAR is pronounced "ree-bar" and is a "Modenism" for Row-By-Agonizing-Row.
    First step towards the paradigm shift of writing Set Based code:
    ________Stop thinking about what you want to do to a row... think, instead, of what you want to do to a column.
    "If you think its expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur."--Red Adair
    "Change is inevitable... change for the better is not."
    When you put the right degree of spin on it, the number 3|8 is also a glyph that describes the nature of a DBAs job. 😉

    Helpful Links:
    How to post code problems
    Create a Tally Function (fnTally)

  • x

    SSC-Insane

    Points: 23478

    Jeff Moden wrote:

    x wrote:

    Jeff Moden wrote:

    x wrote:

    Jeff Moden wrote:

    x wrote:

    Well that's different, on one hand we have associates at work who we will be personally familiar with and often work closely together, and on the other hand, we have internet nutjobs.

    I'm not sure of the meaning of that post as it applies to the subject.  I just found it odd that you're asking if I have something to hide when you're hiding behind literally an "X" user name.  If you think I'm an "internet nutjob" for what I've stated about privacy, then please consider that.

    Well we were talking about the subject, should salary information be confidential. I'm guessing that you will not share it with anybody, and you make no difference between strangers on the internet and your close associates with whom you work daily and that's fine! I would (and have) share salary info with associates I work closely with and heck friends for that matter, but if I feel like interacting differently with unmoderated forums on the internet then maybe I will. If you feel that's somehow contradictory, thats fine, I really don't mind 🙂

    Correct.  IMHO, it's especially important that close associates not share salary information.  In the past, I've found that it creates unnecessary problems between associations even for truly petty differences.  As some have stated on this thread, even my immediate supervisors don't know what my salary is.  It just works out better in the long run.

    So, why are you hiding behind the letter "X"? 😉

    Well that's the thing, I was curious about the problems disclosure caused and the nature of the issues. If I found a compelling argument for either side, I could certainly use this for future reference. I really have found that the whys matter, its why I ask, heck I've learned much by digging into the reasons and I fully recommend it. Heck, with as much salary disclosure as seen with public positions, there's clearly value on the other side. Its ok if I don't feel fully enlightened by the seemingly defensive responses, there does seem to be more to the story, but maybe its ok to not prod further and so I'm good with it.

    As for "X", I figure if I don't fit in well with any given community, I'd probably enjoy posting with a pseudonym more. Originally I was like "oooh my peers in a given technology, I should get along just fine" but that didn't last long LOL.

    Perhaps it has something to do with the questions you ask like "What have you got to hide" and alluding that people on this thread are "internet nutjobs" that have alienated you.

    Wanna start over?  There are some awesome people on this site that will welcome you with open arms if you change the tone a bit.

    There are awesome people on this site. There are also some not so awesome people on this site, and heck maybe I'm not one of the awesome people on the site but do I really have to be? Steve has the ability to ban folks so if I get too cranky and contrary for your tastes, send him a message and I'm sure he'll oblige you. I will try to avoid you in the future and my apologies for this particular failure on my part.

     

     

  • Jeff Moden

    SSC Guru

    Points: 994951

    x wrote:

    There are awesome people on this site. There are also some not so awesome people on this site, and heck maybe I'm not one of the awesome people on the site but do I really have to be? Steve has the ability to ban folks so if I get too cranky and contrary for your tastes, send him a message and I'm sure he'll oblige you. I will try to avoid you in the future and my apologies for this particular failure on my part.

    Heh... You're still doing it.  Settle down.  There's no need to continue to jab at people.  I'm not your enemy.  I was just responding in a manner similar to what had been dished out.

    --Jeff Moden


    RBAR is pronounced "ree-bar" and is a "Modenism" for Row-By-Agonizing-Row.
    First step towards the paradigm shift of writing Set Based code:
    ________Stop thinking about what you want to do to a row... think, instead, of what you want to do to a column.
    "If you think its expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur."--Red Adair
    "Change is inevitable... change for the better is not."
    When you put the right degree of spin on it, the number 3|8 is also a glyph that describes the nature of a DBAs job. 😉

    Helpful Links:
    How to post code problems
    Create a Tally Function (fnTally)

  • Eric M Russell

    SSC Guru

    Points: 125028

    When job hunting, I'm point blank with potential employers or recruiters about what my current salary is. The way I see it, if either party can't match the expectations of the other, then it's best to stop putting effort into a dead end early in the process and instead focus on other more viable options. Discretion and concealment requires effort and can even waste effort, working against one's intended goal. I'm candid that way about a lot of different topics both professional and personal.

    "Do not seek to follow in the footsteps of the wise. Instead, seek what they sought." - Matsuo Basho

  • Jeff Moden

    SSC Guru

    Points: 994951

    Eric M Russell wrote:

    When job hunting, I'm point blank with potential employers or recruiters about what my current salary is. The way I see it, if either party can't match the expectations of the other, then it's best to stop putting effort into a dead end early in the process and instead focus on other more viable options. Discretion and concealment requires effort and can even waste effort, working against one's intended goal. I'm candid that way about a lot of different topics both professional and personal.

    +1000 to that!

    --Jeff Moden


    RBAR is pronounced "ree-bar" and is a "Modenism" for Row-By-Agonizing-Row.
    First step towards the paradigm shift of writing Set Based code:
    ________Stop thinking about what you want to do to a row... think, instead, of what you want to do to a column.
    "If you think its expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur."--Red Adair
    "Change is inevitable... change for the better is not."
    When you put the right degree of spin on it, the number 3|8 is also a glyph that describes the nature of a DBAs job. 😉

    Helpful Links:
    How to post code problems
    Create a Tally Function (fnTally)

  • Matt Miller (4)

    SSC Guru

    Points: 124185

    Eric M Russell wrote:

    When job hunting, I'm point blank with potential employers or recruiters about what my current salary is. The way I see it, if either party can't match the expectations of the other, then it's best to stop putting effort into a dead end early in the process and instead focus on other more viable options. Discretion and concealment requires effort and can even waste effort, working against one's intended goal. I'm candid that way about a lot of different topics both professional and personal.

    I agree on that viewpoint, but it dodges the original question.  How do you know whether what you currently make is in line with what the company is paying out already?  Would you be offended if a few years in you were to find that you had been short-sheeting yourself and the company was happy to go along with it?  Otherwise worded - SHOULD you be happy that they merely matched your request?

    The level of obscurity these days is frankly daunting.  I'm not even allowed to know the range I am actually in, and while not unhappy with what I am making - it doesn't inspire a whole lot of trust.  What is the actual benefit to the employees for all of this to be secret?

     

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Your lack of planning does not constitute an emergency on my part...unless you're my manager...or a director and above...or a really loud-spoken end-user..All right - what was my emergency again?

  • Eric M Russell

    SSC Guru

    Points: 125028

    Matt Miller (4) wrote:

    Eric M Russell wrote:

    When job hunting, I'm point blank with potential employers or recruiters about what my current salary is. The way I see it, if either party can't match the expectations of the other, then it's best to stop putting effort into a dead end early in the process and instead focus on other more viable options. Discretion and concealment requires effort and can even waste effort, working against one's intended goal. I'm candid that way about a lot of different topics both professional and personal.

    I agree on that viewpoint, but it dodges the original question.  How do you know whether what you currently make is in line with what the company is paying out already?  Would you be offended if a few years in you were to find that you had been short-sheeting yourself and the company was happy to go along with it?  Otherwise worded - SHOULD you be happy that they merely matched your request?

    The level of obscurity these days is frankly daunting.  I'm not even allowed to know the range I am actually in, and while not unhappy with what I am making - it doesn't inspire a whole lot of trust.  What is the actual benefit to the employees for all of this to be secret?

    We can't know what the company is currently paying, but if our personal salary expectation is based on research into what the market is generally paying, then it doesn't really matter. At least for the smarter organizations, the expectations of incoming candidates helps change long standing perceptions of what employees should be paid, so it's possible the new guy is getting paid more, followed by gradual pay increases for everyone else over time.

    "Do not seek to follow in the footsteps of the wise. Instead, seek what they sought." - Matsuo Basho

  • Lynn Pettis

    SSC Guru

    Points: 442144

    Matt Miller (4) wrote:

    Eric M Russell wrote:

    When job hunting, I'm point blank with potential employers or recruiters about what my current salary is. The way I see it, if either party can't match the expectations of the other, then it's best to stop putting effort into a dead end early in the process and instead focus on other more viable options. Discretion and concealment requires effort and can even waste effort, working against one's intended goal. I'm candid that way about a lot of different topics both professional and personal.

    I agree on that viewpoint, but it dodges the original question.  How do you know whether what you currently make is in line with what the company is paying out already?  Would you be offended if a few years in you were to find that you had been short-sheeting yourself and the company was happy to go along with it?  Otherwise worded - SHOULD you be happy that they merely matched your request?

    The level of obscurity these days is frankly daunting.  I'm not even allowed to know the range I am actually in, and while not unhappy with what I am making - it doesn't inspire a whole lot of trust.  What is the actual benefit to the employees for all of this to be secret?

     

    Companies should publish their pay scales, just not what each individual is making (unless you happen to be working for a government entity where that knowledge is usually publicly accessable).

     

     

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