Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Did You Take a 25% Paycut?

As an employer, I got a nice little note from Robert Half Technology. The "good news" is that human labor is on sale.

Their examples:

Application Developer 2008 rate: $96 /hr
Application Developer 2009 rate: $78 /hr

SQL Database Developer 2008 rate: $104 /hr
SQL Database Developer 2009 rate: $87 /hr

System Administrator 2008 rate: $87 /hr
System Administrator 2009 rate: $66 /hr

Desktop Support 2008 rate: $44 /hr
Desktop Support 2009 rate: $31 /hr

Help Desk 2008 rate: $28 /hr
Help Desk 2009 rate: $23 /hr

- - - - -

One word: OUCH!

Cutting the price for outsourced personnel is one thing. But what about those "real" employees?

Well, I know we've cut back hours in the last year. In addition to layoffs, we've had to reduce hours. So while we've avoided pay rate decreases, we've clamped down on overtime and reduced schedules from time to time.

On a related note . . .

We recently hired a web development intern. We got a student who is very good, eager to learn, and not looking for a full time gig at $40,000 a year.

That ad ran almost a month ago and we still get resumes every single day. We're over 100 resumes so far. Some of them are from very skilled, experienced people who should (and will) find a job at $60K or more. But times are hard, so they're applying to anything.

Don't Get Mad At The Employer

A few people have sent me nasty notes about the rate I'm paying the intern, blah blah blah. I'm the most evil person in the history of the world, etc.

Hint: That won't help you get hired. I've had my share of financial woes (see previous post) and I need to manage my business reasonably without overpaying for supplies, services, . . . and labor.

This is a very, very hard time to own a business. But if you don't own a business, then you work for a business. And it's a hard time to be an employee!

Think about your wage like the stock market. Right now, your employee stock is probably down. Someday it will go up. With luck it may go way up. In the meantime, focus on what you can to keep yourself valuable and make yourself more valuable.


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1 comment:

  1. We don't pay anywhere near the quoted rates for people coming in off the street, unless you've been here for more than a year you aren't entitled to that kind of salary unless you know everything about how our internal infrastructure works.

    And while many will argue that they are experts with dozens of years in... everything... that expertise is only valid for a year or two until the next release comes out so unless they have a certification track I tend to point out to them that those salaries are reserved for true experts and give them a resume example.

    Employees don't think like employers and thats typically the key reason why they are looking for a job. We've interviewed a lot of people as the job market got interesting for project work and I have to admit that I'm rather disappointed with what's out there.



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