Candidates today are getting mixed advice on how to handle the salary question in a phone screen or first interview. Recruiters and hiring managers want to know the candidate salary expecations up front so they don't waste time with a person who isn't in their range. Career advisors are telling candidates to avoid mentioning a dollar amount until their skills and value have been established during the course of an interview.
What are you advising your candidates to do in this crazy job market?

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Hi Marni, it is not surprising that candidates get mixed advice. The crazy job market is just another variable.

This question always consists of two parts - what is your current/last salary package?
And of course - what are your pay expectations?

As a corporate HR executive I would be very annoyed if a recruiter cannot provide me with a candidate's pay details, which means candidates should have some good answers:
1. Clear explanation of fixed pay, STI and LTI.
2. Provide a range of expected pay (never a specific number or vague response)

This is also the advice I provide from a career coaching perspective. In today's market, it is important that candidates are realistic and are not excluding themselves from roles that are paid below their current level. Ultimately, it is a package of job responsibilities, title, reporting level and pay - which could be different for each candidate.

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