How To Share Salary Range On Job Postings

I have not done a speaking engagement in the last three months where someone didn’t ask me something about the salary range on job postings. Not one. I answer the same way every time: Well, let me ask you this. Would you take a job without knowing how much it paid? 

Even virtually, that joke gets at least a couple of laughs in the comments. It’s actually laughable that anyone would take a job without knowing how much that role would pay, so I’m not sure how you could make a business case for not including a salary range on job postings. If it’s a deal breaker for job seekers and you’re not flexible, that information needs to be shared upfront. 

That’s not just my opinion anymore. More state and city governments are getting on board every day since we created our most recent update on salary transparency

Transparency Laws Are Spreading

New York and California passed salary laws for companies with more than 15 employees. You should expect these laws to impact your team sooner than later.  

However, New York and California aren’t the only ones adopting more transparency when we’re talking salary range on job postings. As of last year, we were at about 30 cities and states with new salary transparency laws. This year? I’d expect that number to double or even triple, especially as companies like Microsoft, Citigroup, and Google begin posting nationwide.

While enforcement is still up in the air, there’s a more important element that we’re not talking about: How do you explain a salary range to a candidate that’s not aware of how pay ranges work? 

Start With A Realistic Salary Range On Job Postings

It’s not posting obnoxious ranges like $0 to $2 million. That’s not a pay range; that’s a made-up number. It’s definitely not writing some line about, “Don’t expect to get paid the top of this range.” Yes, someone really did that. 

Realistic ranges are a great start. The bottom number should be the minimum anyone qualified for this job will make. If they meet every criterion in the job posting, they will make that amount of money. You should explicitly tell your candidate that during pre-screening. Tell them on the job post, too. 

Then, list what work experiences would align with the top of the pay range. For example, “If you have experience managing a team of five or more, implementing a CRM, or building a digital marketing plan that generated more than $1 million in revenue, please mention that in your interview, as you will get additional compensation for that experience.”  

I know that’s hard because most recruiters and hiring managers don’t actually know what work experiences align with the top of the pay range. However, figuring this out is the first step toward better pay equity and a world where we stop paying the best negotiators and start paying our most talented people. Plus, this year, it can save you from some legal and compliance headaches.

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Kat Kibben View All →

Kat Kibben [they/them] is a keynote speaker, writing expert, and LGBTQIA+ advocate who teaches hiring teams how to write inclusive job postings that will get the right person to apply faster.

Before founding Three Ears Media, Katrina was a CMO, Technical Copywriter, and Managing Editor for leading companies like Monster,, and Randstad Worldwide. With 15+ years of recruitment marketing and training experience, Katrina knows how to turn talented recruiting teams into talented writers who write for people, not about work.

Today, Katrina is frequently featured as an HR and recruiting expert in publications like The New York Times, Chicago Tribune, and Forbes. They’ve been named to numerous lists, including LinkedIn’s Top Voices in Job Search & Careers. When not speaking, writing, or training, you’ll find Katrina traveling the country in their van or spending some much needed downtime with the dogs that inspired the name Three Ears Media.

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