Salary expectations are growing swiftly as companies are being forced to compete openly and loudly for talent. In an already tight tech labor market, this increased competition is leading candidates to adjust their salary expectations in real time.
Over the past several months, we’ve seen candidates join the job market at one desired salary level, only for their expectations to jump $30,000 or more after a few rounds of interviews. Skills sets didn’t increase by $30,000, but the demand has driven up the cost of hiring a new developer or engineer.
Organizations need to start business critical projects that may have been put on the back burner in 2020 and 2021. However, candidates are being more cautious and more demanding about how they are spending their time at work. In addition to increased compensation, tech talent has decided to wait for the ideal job that aligns with their skills, allows them to work remotely, and is of interest to them.
This is a major shift; in lieu of taking another job, candidates are prioritizing their own wellness and desired career path at their own pace as they explore their options. This leisurely pace is driving employers to openly advertise lucrative compensation packages.
Counteroffers are on the rise from current employers who are desperate to maintain their teams and the status quo. New offers include sign-on bonuses with limited restrictions, equity, or benefits from day one. Frequent (and earlier) performance review periods for raises and promotions are used to guarantee an on-going competitive package once the new employee starts.
Thus, in an attempt to appeal to a broader audience, companies have shown candidates the benefits and compensation they should be holding out for. In turn, candidates are taking more time to explore and adjust their expectations.
Organizations must be willing and able to negotiate for the talent they want. As of now, candidates can adjust their expectations in a way that we have not seen before.