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Am I underpaid?

#1 Am I underpaid?
15/10/2006 15:12

Hacked Off

I joined my current firm a few months ago as a "senior analyst". I had 18 months experience as a graduate analyst at a competitor and six months experience from working a contract in industry.

I have volunteered to do some interviewing this fall, but when I received the recruitment briefing pack I discovered that fresh undergraduates arriving as soon as January are going to be offered a higher salary than I am on myself.

When I was originally offered the job, I had a conversation where it was clearly agreed that I should be brought in on the same salary as if I had spent the two years since graduation progressing through the firm. As a result, I got a 15% uplift on the original salary offered.

I think I have justified that uplift - I have beaten my billing and development targets consistently since joining. I even sold some work to the company I used to work for. And I do a lot of other work "off balance sheet" - I was the only person in my department to volunteer to help with recruiting.

I don't know if the graduate salary has just been made more competitive within the last few months, or whether I was misled when I was recruited.

The question is, is it worth raising this issue with my firm or should I just chalk it up to experience?

I'm conscious that in the grand scale of things I'm just an analyst and the career structure at this firm is fairly rigid. I don't want to get a reputation as a complainer so soon after arriving, but I also don't want to wait six months until annual review time, only to end up working an associate's hours for a first year analyst's salary.

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#2 RE: Am I underpaid?
15/10/2006 18:12

Don Quaye to Hacked Off (#1)

Sounds frustrating! However, the problem is still some time off becoming real - the graduate intake will not start for almost a year. I'm sure the salary question can be raised at the next annual appraisal and I doubt they would be so unreasonable so as not to agree you had a valid point, so long as you raise it an appropriate way.

If they have any sense they will surely realise that they have people in this situation and will be planning to address it; I have seen it happen before and few things are as harmful to morale or as significant in causing a mass exit at the levels affected!

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#3 RE: Am I underpaid?
22/10/2006 16:38

tuned in, switched on, dropped out to Hacked Off (#1)

That does sound completely out of order. If I was in your position and found out that new graduates starting in January were going to be paid more than me, I would be seriously mad. Money matters a lot to me, but still even if money isn't your main motivation it's plain rude of your company to do that. It could ruin the working relationship if you have to look after the new joiners.

For all you know, you could be paid more than people above you. If this gets out and people start discussing salaries there could be a knock-on where everyone asks for a rise. At the end of the day, they should never have revealed salaries - perhaps that's why BAS are so cagey?*

If I were you, I'd ask my manager for a quiet word and tell them about the situation. Don't ask for more money - you don't want them to feel blackmailed - they should be able to work out whether they've overvalued new grad or undervalued you. If you tell too many people you look like you're bellyaching and more people will start asking for raises. One small raise for you is affordable and might happen. Lots of small raises for everyone is expensive and will not.

* just keeping the joke ticking over. Not an invitation to open warfare again.

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