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What would you do? (Post-HR screening dilemma)

 
#1 What would you do? (Post-HR screening dilemma)
14/04/2016 14:33

entun

Hi,

You have 8 years of IT industry experience, spread across 2 sectors (e.g. investment banking & logistics), 4 employers, and 3 roles (client-facing business analysis, as well as project management & people management). Current package is valued at over 68k, 36hrs a week, 45min commute, single office location. Your salary is being reviewed in 2 months and will likely increase by 2-3%. Big downsides are that it’s working on deadly dull, employability-eroding projects for multiple years, with little room for promotion or even moving onto other projects, plus a constant turnover of critical staff due to low morale, etc.

You’ve considered, and applied, to one of the big 4 (D) for technology consulting. They want someone with experience in both of your two specialist sectors. At an initial HR screening, you refused, diplomatically, to discuss salary at that early point (you weren't 100% sure how much your bonus etc tallied up to on the spot anyway) - and when pushed, the HR contact mentioned your application was being considered at “SC or Manager level” (TBC). You did disclose that the main things that attracted you to the role were potential variety of projects, being client-facing again, and the career path precedents that exist there. You also realise that the cushy little number that you current have in terms of travel/working hours would disappear.

Before the next face-to-face interview is lined up, would you:

1) Disclose your 68k current package to the HR contact directly, so that he can just reject your application for SC consideration altogether (68k seems to be higher than SCs get, based on Glassdoor data & looking through these forums). There’s a risk that the application will be taken no further as, for all you know, Manager grade is definitely out because you’ve got no prior Big 4 experience.

2) Keep schtum. You haven’t even got an offer yet.

3) Something else?

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#2 RE: What would you do? (Post-HR screening dilemma)
14/04/2016 14:41

Bushy Eyebrow Partner to entun (#1)

Option 2. See what they offer you, THEN do the whole "you're having a laff!" routine to get it re-positioned at the right grade.

My logic:

1. Right now they're deciding whether to employ you. We don't want to put that off the rails by complicating matters yet. Let them do their deliberations and wait until they've decided they want to employ you.

2. At subsequent rounds of interviews with the non-HR people, you'll be able to discuss experience and seniority expectations anyway.

3. Next step in the process will be negotiation. As they've by now decided they want to employ you (by virtue of offer received), a dialogue has now started and has given you more scope for agreeing with them where you'll fit in (what level).

Although actually for 68K and 36 hours a week with a 45 min commute and no travel, I'd seriously be thinking about staying put!!!

And remember, always be professional and give it your all. Like these guys: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mfwVfEXJhQQ

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#3 RE: What would you do? (Post-HR screening dilemma)
14/04/2016 14:51

Bushy Eyebrow Partner to Bushy Eyebrow Partner (#2)

This one is quite professional too. It has some nice computer generated graphics: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kLcns2KHDTE

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#4 RE: What would you do? (Post-HR screening dilemma)
14/04/2016 15:42

marsday to entun (#1)

Option 1: you have no burning platform and as Bushy said, the terms you are under already are actually attractive. There is no point in investing time in a process if it will only result in Deloitte being unable to offer you a position to meet your expectation. It won't work to hold off on disclosing salary until you have a positive decision and intention to offer - this is Deloitte, and frankly they will simply can you for someone who co-operates.

That said, the information you are gathering on Glassdoor is a. unlikely to be comprehensive about all package components, and certainly won't reflect the harder to quantify financial uplift a Big 4 brand on your CV will give you in a couple of years and b. inevitably clouded by all the emotive stuff which gets poured into Glassdoor.

Option 4: decide what your base line salary is (use the assumption package will be comparable or better) and disclose your expectations to D. As Mr Cool would say, have your BATNA.

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#5 RE: What would you do? (Post-HR screening dilemma)
14/04/2016 16:04

Bushy Eyebrow Partner to marsday (#4)

good plan

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#6 RE: What would you do? (Post-HR screening dilemma)
14/04/2016 16:55

Frio to Bushy Eyebrow Partner (#5)

I agree with Mars. £65k would be approximately the starting salary offered to most external hires at Manager level. I have seen Managers join for substantially more than this, but such hires have been as a result of a separate business case and have been because either the candidate has a very rare skill set or an ability to use their contacts to bring in business.

In your next interview, it's extremely likely that you will be asked what your current package is and what you would leave for. Have some justification for an increased package in your mind, the Big 4's will try and persuade you that the brand on your CV is worth something - of course it is but that doesn't help pay the mortgage!

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#7 RE: What would you do? (Post-HR screening dilemma)
15/04/2016 10:49

ApacCons123 to entun (#1)

Be clear on expectations up front.

From personal experience I went through a long song and dance with a firm only to find out late in the process the couldn't even match my current salary.

The next time I was approached I asked about ranges for the level up front and saved myself a lot of bother.

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#8 RE: What would you do? (Post-HR screening dilemma)
15/04/2016 12:39

entun to ApacCons123 (#7)

Hi all,

Surprised (and pleased) with so much feedback on here so soon. I've read through all the advice today, following getting a confirmation of the face to face interview slot. Thank you.

What I've decided to do is answer clearly any discussion around seniority / current salary / expectations at that 1hr face to face interview, and if it's not raised, I'll follow up with an email to my recruitment contact with details.

This is in the hope that, if they can't/won't meet my current package + perhaps slightly more due to the salary review due shortly, it's nipped in the bud before it moves along to the experience hire assessment centre stage.

I figure "a salary starting with a 7" is a reasonable ask, if they are going to pitch me as a Manager level.

Thanks again.

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#9 RE: What would you do? (Post-HR screening dilemma)
12/07/2016 19:08

entun to entun (#8)

So, my offer came through at £54k basic plus the £5900 benefits. SC grade. Interesting.

Thoughts on how I could proceed, when my expectation and current package are so out of kilter with their offer?

I'd told the partner that my current package is 68k on the call I.e. I was honest when asked.

Is it just a waste of both parties' time to discuss when the gap is so large...?

(P.s. since my original post I have had an unusual (not linked to my own performance) bonus and a small salary bump to getme nearer to £75k for this year... future years likely to be back down nearer the 68k I'd mentioned.)

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#10 RE: What would you do? (Post-HR screening dilemma)
12/07/2016 19:08

entun to entun (#8)

.......

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#11 RE: What would you do? (Post-HR screening dilemma)
12/07/2016 19:09

entun to entun (#10)

Apologies for double posting - server threw a wobbly!

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#12 RE: What would you do? (Post-HR screening dilemma)
12/07/2016 19:35

Richthekeeper to entun (#11)

With your depth of experience in sectors which are of interest to the prospective employer, I'm surprised you haven't been offered Manager grade.

If you're asking us whether you should take an £8k pay cut, your current job must really suck. Can you negotiate to somewhere around level par and settle yourself with the knowledge that having a big 4 on your CV will pay dividends later on?

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#13 RE: What would you do? (Post-HR screening dilemma)
12/07/2016 22:30

entun to Richthekeeper (#12)

Indeed I was surprised to read "mc2 - senior consultant" when I received the paperwork. It's something I also flagged/temperature checked on the very first HR call with them - so at least one person involved in the offer know my concerns.

I guess it may be because i don't have prior big 4 experience & it may make me expensive to clients from the get go. (That is, going by what I read on here.) On the other hand, I do have solid relevant industry consulting experience (client facing).

The whole offer is underwhelming, and my gut feel is that moving from a stable 68k (in an avg year) role to the one offered by D just isn't something I'd be happy with. My current role is pretty rubbish (skills and employability wise) ,but not that bad!

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#14 RE: What would you do? (Post-HR screening dilemma)
15/07/2016 15:01

cloudnumbernine4u to entun (#13)

I think in the first HR discussion that you may have had with them, you should have told them the expected salary, because I am sure this D company does ask that based on my experience with them. Based on those expectations and your skills/experience, they would consider you for a specific band. (My experience is they actually end up giving you just about what you asked for at the beginning if they find you good enough and expectations are no unrealistic)

Ideally for M level, considering you already have 68K, they would have given you about 73K basic plus about 6K benefits. Thats what they generally do. I think you have not disclosed your current package and expectations to them at the beginning (if I understood correctly) and hence this result. I do not think they can even match now, considering they already positioned you at a specific band (SC) and experience level within the firm. So it will be very difficult for them now to negotiate internally for your band or salary increase.

Its unfortunate, but guess a lesson learnt?

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#15 RE: What would you do? (Post-HR screening dilemma)
15/07/2016 18:01

entun to cloudnumbernine4u (#14)

Thank you for the insight - I appreciate you sharing thoughts from the other side of the discussion table. Definitely a lesson learned, but then I never know which way to go with these things (disclose too early? get pigeon-holed and may not realise how much leeway they have in the bandings. disclose too late, and i've ended up as we have here.)

Definitely a lesson for the future. Appreciate all of your input/advice throughout though.

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#16 RE: What would you do? (Post-HR screening dilemma)
19/07/2016 08:51

DCF to entun (#15)

Classic Deloitte low-balling with saaries that haven't increased in 10 years.

That said, the real problem is that you have too much experience and that you have "overshot" the entry point to the Big 4. It might have worked better 3 or so years ago whenyou would have had enough experience but a better salary match.

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#17 RE: What would you do? (Post-HR screening dilemma)
19/07/2016 11:25

entun to DCF (#16)

Thanks.

What's my next entry point into big 4, if i were to re-consider in future?

Show more budget/head-of-department type exp. from industry roles -> enter as Manager?

Or is it too late full stop?

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#18 RE: What would you do? (Post-HR screening dilemma)
19/07/2016 12:05

DCF to entun (#17)

I think Manager is a tricky entry point without experience of engagement management for a consultancy - although it does happen.

Senior manager / director is another possible entry point for experienced candidates - either as an expert or with client relationships.

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#19 RE: What would you do? (Post-HR screening dilemma)
19/07/2016 12:41

entun to DCF (#18)

I see - thank you!

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