The time runs out, companies must start practicing pay transparency
August 29, 2023
min read

The time runs out, companies must start practicing pay transparency

Ana Gospodinova
Ana Gospodinova

In the tech industry, where competition for top talent is fierce, software developers increasingly value pay transparency. While some tech companies have led the way in this regard, there is still work to be done. Many companies are in dire need of software engineers but continue to hide their salary ranges, exacerbating the pay transparency gap.

The market looks promising with the recent legislation in the EU and the US. While employers are generally complying with the letter of the law, there’s a lot of evidence that many aren’t complying with the spirit of the law. On the other side, software engineers stand with their demands, which makes them wonder what companies are actually trying to hide. The clock is ticking, and it's high time for companies to start practicing pay transparency.

Clearly written salary encourages engineers to apply

Generally speaking, software developers in Europe feel content with their salary ranges because their earnings tend to outstrip those in other major industry sectors like healthcare, transportation, retail, etc. If companies are about to make software developers consider thinking about their next job, they must unveil the shadow around their salary ranges and start practicing pay transparency.

As the problem isn’t that simple, experts recommend building standard salary ranges for positions across the entire organization in addition to new job postings.

According to our latest #Wanted and #Misunderstood - A Dev Survey 2023, a staggering 86% of participants expressed that clearly defined salary ranges would encourage them to apply for a job. At the same time, candidates often dislike questions about their salary expectations during job interviews, viewing them as attempts to lowball them and create discomfort.

The problem isn’t that simple to solve

Just embracing salary compensation levels in job postings or on the company career pages won’t be considered a remedy. As the problem isn’t that simple, experts recommend building standard salary ranges for positions across the entire organization in addition to new job postings. From then on, companies must objectively build salary ranges before deciding to talk to candidates.

pay transparency software engineers recruitment

Simply adding salary information to job postings or company career pages isn't a cure-all solution. The challenge is more intricate. Experts recommend establishing standardized salary ranges across the entire organization, in addition to disclosing them in job postings. Companies should create salary ranges based on factors like experience, education, and tenure, enabling employees in similar positions to understand their pay relative to peers. In the long term, companies that resist pay transparency may witness a decline in the number of applicants. Data from the WeAreDevelopers job board shows that job postings with clearly stated salary ranges outperform those without by 30-50%. Let’s not forget that increased transparency is helping build trust, too. An SHRM study found that 73% of employees are more likely to trust their organization if they are transparent about their salary ranges.

Not enough money for the salary race? Here is a surprising fact!

Pay transparency alone isn't a magic solution for attracting top talent in the tech job market. However, companies must start practicing as time runs out. Our survey reveals that software engineers in Europe may accept lower salaries if offered opportunities for advancement (43%) or learning (34%). Over 50% prioritize job offers that promise personal and professional growth.

pay transparency software engineers recruitment

In the longer term, companies will inevitably embrace pay transparency due to legal requirements or employee willingness to disclose salaries. At the same time, they find themselves attracting better-fit candidates.

Pay transparency, a bare minimum, just to enter the game

It’s no longer a trend to say that you follow pay transparency incentives or that your company aims to get better-fit candidates or more applicants per open job position. The real truth is that pay transparency becomes the norm, something software engineers expect, as their minds are already elsewhere. Where else, you ask yourself? They look to secure a better future with more challenging tasks and opportunities for career development. Consider pay transparency as the bare minimum to stay competitive, and don't forget, the time runs out.


#Wanted and #Misunderstood: A Developer Survey 2023 (Full Report)

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#Wanted and #Misunderstood: A Developer Survey 2023 (Full Report)

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