from the shift-in-the-balance-of-power dept.
Here in California, our government has passed a strange new law.
Although intended to force employers to stop offering different pay rates to men and women, the new law has the strange side effect of forcing recruiters to play fair - and recruiters aren't liking it. The law also forbids asking candidates for their prior compensation history. Again, recruiters and hiring managers aren't liking the new shift in the balance of power:
Assembly Bill No. 168
SECTION 1. Section 432.3 is added to the Labor Code, to read:
432.3. (a) An employer shall not rely on the salary history information of an applicant for employment as a factor in determining whether to offer employment to an applicant or what salary to offer an applicant.
(b) An employer shall not, orally or in writing, personally or through an agent, seek salary history information, including compensation and benefits, about an applicant for employment.
(c) An employer, upon reasonable request, shall provide the pay scale for a position to an applicant applying for employment.
(d) Section 433 does not apply to this section.
(e) This section shall not apply to salary history information disclosable to the public pursuant to federal or state law, including the California Public Records Act (Chapter 3.5 (commencing with Section 6250) of Division 7 of Title 1 of the Government Code) or the federal Freedom of Information Act (Section 552 of Title 5 of the United States Code).
(f) This section applies to all employers, including state and local government employers and the Legislature.
(g) Nothing in this section shall prohibit an applicant from voluntarily and without prompting disclosing salary history information to a prospective employer.
(h) If an applicant voluntarily and without prompting discloses salary history information to a prospective employer, nothing in this section shall prohibit that employer from considering or relying on that voluntarily disclosed salary history information in determining the salary for that applicant.
(i) Consistent with Section 1197.5, nothing in this section shall be construed to allow prior salary, by itself, to justify any disparity in compensation.
To drive salaries and wages down, Silicon Valley has for many years outsourced their recruiting efforts to other states, where the cost of living is much lower and recruiting agency employees were less likely to respect the inevitable protests from candidates over the low wages being offered, because the wages being offered were comparable to the wages being offered in the state where the recruiter was located.
Now Silicon Valley's employers have the unpleasant duty of educating their remote, far-flung, outsourced networks of workers of the new law.
If you're a job-seeker, here in California, how has this new law affected your ability to seek employment and your experience with recruiters?
If you're a recruiter - inside or outside California - how is this affecting your business? How are you treating candidates who inform you of this new law?
If you're a hiring manager, are you informing recruiters of this law? Are they informing you of this law?
Violation of the law is a misdemeanor.
The California Legislature is interested in receiving feedback from employees and candidates, also.
Obviously, the Legislature has already heard, and is hearing, from employers. But they need to hear BOTH sides in order to make (and defend) their decisions.
It's tempting to badmouth the California Legislature - but I was pleasantly surprised to discover legislative information was available, via Archie (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Archie_search_engine), from the leginfo.legislature.ca.gov website, two decades ago.