the salary I was offered was a bait and switch

A reader writes:

I have been talking to another department about an internal move. When I first talked to the hiring manager, he told me the pay would be $83K with 10% bonus. (I am currently making $54k.)

When I saw the offer letter yesterday, it was for $70K with 4% bonus.

The explanation I got was that $83K is the total compensation package with benefits, vacation, holidays, etc.

I told the hiring manager that NOBODY thinks that way. Nobody hears a number and thinks, “Well, my paycheck will be only x% of that stated number.”

I talked to a colleague – who started in April – about this – and she said they did the same thing to her! So it’s not just internal candidates.

Has anyone else ever run into this? I feel as if I have been baited and switched. I am quite cranky.

Hell yes, you should be cranky. That’s absolutely ridiculous — you’re right that no one calculates salary that way.

We’ve heard about candidates wanting to do this on their side — reporting a salary history that includes the value of benefits — and everyone is agreed that that’s not cool to do. But it’s even more ridiculous when an employer tries to pull it, because they’re talking about how much they’re going to pay you. You do not mislead people about how much you’re going to pay them. It’s not okay.

Plus, if that’s how salaries were stated, how would a candidate be able to know how much money they’d actually be making, unless they knew precisely how much the company pays for health insurance, etc. (which most candidates don’t)? They wouldn’t, which is another reason why this is crap.

Either the manager was deliberately trying to mislead you or he’s completely, utterly out of touch with how people normally think and operate, to a pretty unusual extent. The first one makes him a jerk, and the second one makes him a walking red flag if you’re considering working for him. Neither is good.

Since you already work for this company, you’re in a good position to complain to someone about this BS. While I don’t normally recommend going to HR for much, I have to think that they wouldn’t be happy to know that this jerkwad is doing this.

This entry was posted in HR, Leadership. Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.