My colleague and virtual friend Angie Jones wrote a great article on recent her job search; you should read it. No, really, you should read it, especially if you are in talent acquisition or if you are a hiring manager. If you are not, read it anyway and forward it to your manager and your HR team. Section 2 is the part I couldn’t get out of my head; at least read that part so you know what the heck I’m talking about.

Go ahead…I’ll wait…

I’ve interviewed for jobs; I’ve been a hiring manager. I know the score…for me. Never have I had to endure what Angie had to endure; never would it cross my mind to put someone through that kind of ordeal.

Listen up hiring people…even if you don’t care about being fair (which you should), even if you don’t care about diversity (again, which you should), I’m sure you care about business.

I learned a long time ago, you need to pay an employee, a member of your team, what they’re worth. When courting new talent, it’s a delicate dance. Yes, you have a budget. Yes, if you spend more money on Candidate A, you have less to spend on Opportunity B, whatever or whoever that may be; I’m familiar with basic budgeting. If you are maxing out your budget and can’t negotiate, you do your best; I get it. But, if you have the budget, are you really willing to sacrifice a legitimate candidate over a “few thousand dollars”? Perhaps you should rethink your priorities.

I’ve lost candidates because I’d maxed my budget and couldn’t get $1 more. I’ve lost employees because they got more cash going elsewhere. It happens, but only when I didn’t have the budget, not because I was “trying to get a deal”. I’ve gone back to the well, even when I knew it would be dry (i.e. no more money), because you never really know when additional funds have become available. Read the articles out there. How much does it cost to replace an employee? 1.5x their salary? 2x? More? How often do you find a great candidate? How long have you been looking?

Rethink your “few thousand dollars” in the bigger picture. If you under-offer and a candidate figures that out, they won’t accept the offer. Even worse, they figure it out after you’ve already hired and started training them; now you’re out a good candidate and the on-boarding costs. It’s even worse if you’ve informed your other potential candidates that the role is filled and they’ve moved on. You’re probably starting from scratch.

And if you think a particular demographic is less deserving or would “take less”. That’s bad business (see above) and bad humanity (see the mirror).I’m not going to address the “suggested that I apply for one of the company’s less technical roles”; when the candidate’s resume clearly shows the candidate is qualified, at least on paper, that’s just sloppy recruiting. Hiring people, get yourself educated or at least read the resume.

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