How Long

by Matthew Stollak on Monday, November 14, 2011

In today's wonderful edition of The Cynical Girl, Laurie Ruettimann cites that 82% of recruiters find evidence of discrimination against the employed.

This brings up the following conundrum:

1.  If recruiters and employers are not looking at the unemployed to fill vacancies, they must be looking at job seekers who are currently desiring to leave their current position, or trying to entice those who may be content at their current job.

2.  Wages have stagnated for the past 30 years....see graph:



So, riddle me this Batman, how are vacancies being filled if higher real wages aren't increasing.  Or, is the only way to get a wage increase in today's economy is to switch jobs with the expectation, that once the job is secured, one is unlikely to see significant increased in salary for several years?  Is pay compression (or even pay inversion) the "new normal?"

2 comments

Matt,

Sadly, I think you are right in that the only way to increase one's own wage is to switch jobs. I see this within my own organization. Given the reductions in pay we went through, I am making less now than I was 2 years ago and the only way I will be able to change that is to leave. Medicaid reimbursements are not getting bumped back up and could even take another hit depending on the super committee's actions in DC.

by Bradley on November 14, 2011 at 10:02 PM. #

Should the CPI adjusted average change though? Every year people retire (presumably your higher wage earners), and new people enter the workforce at lower wage levels. With the baby boomers beginning to retire, I would actually expect that number to drop. College grads aren't commanding that much higher of a salary today than what they were when I entered the workforce several years ago.

That being said, there are definitely certain fields where wage compression is a very real problem. I am lucky to work for a company that keeps that in the forefront and makes one-time or broad based adjustments where they are warranted. Those employers that don't are already at risk of losing their high peformers, never mind when the balance shifts again to be an employee's market rather than the employer's market that it is now. As your other blog post noted, discrimination against the unemployed is a very real thing. Companies are keeping their good people - and those are the ones we want!

by Jennifer G. on November 30, 2011 at 9:53 AM. #

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