US firms move to ban salary history questions in recruitment – WorldatWork

A number of US cities and states have passed laws prohibiting employers from asking job candidates about their salary history, prompting more employers to adopt US-wide policies on the issue, according to research from WorldatWork.

  • 37% of organisations have implemented a ban on asking about salary history during recruitment, regardless of whether a local law exists requiring this practice.
  • A further 35% prohibit salary history questions during recruitment only where local laws require it.
  • Of those yet to implement a policy, 40% report they are ‘somewhat’ or ‘extremely’ likely to do so in the next 12 months.
  • A third of the employers that have implemented a ban on asking about salary history say that implementing the policy is ‘very’ or ‘extremely’ simple.

Sue Holloway, Director of executive compensation strategy at WorldatWork, said:

‘The idea of having to craft a total rewards offer without salary history information can be daunting to some managers or employers. But when hiring managers and recruiters are educated and given reliable compensation data on market rates and pay ranges, the need for a candidate’s salary history diminishes. What we are seeing in practice is that actually eliminating the use of salary history isn’t as challenging as many feared it might be.'
‘Quick survey on salary history bans (US)’, WorldatWork [PDF]: