In America’s Largest City, a Big Change in Job Listings



It’s not only a new month on Tuesday—it’s the first day in the nation’s largest city where job seekers will finally know how much most positions pay before they get too deep into the application process. A new law has officially gone into effect in which all companies in New York City with four or more employees must provide, “in good faith,” salary ranges for each offered job—in the office, remote, or hybrid—that “accurately reflect what the company would be ready to give a new employee,” reports the New York Times. It’s a big move in a city where international conglomerates like Pfizer and Google have offices, and one that advocates hope will close gender and racial pay gaps. A similar transparency law applying to the entire state is waiting to be signed by Gov. Kathy Hochul, while California and the state of Washington are set to launch their own next year.

Colorado was the trailblazer on this front, establishing rules around salary disclosures earlier this year. Violations of the New York City law, which will be overseen by the city’s Commission on Human Rights, won’t result in a fine for a first offense, but ones afterward could reach as high as $250,000. Such laws aren’t just valuable for people scouring the want ads: They also “[give] existing employees and workers information to better gauge how positions within their workplace are valued and whether they’re being paid fairly,” attorney Seher Khawaja of Legal Momentum, the organization that helped draft the law, tells the AP. Some companies, like American Express and Citigroup, are even extending New York City’s law to apply to their job listings nationally, reports Bloomberg.

“We have extended this same level of transparency across the US to ensure a consistent experience for job seekers interested in finding their place on our team,” Amex says in a statement. It wasn’t all smooth sailing to get here: Some companies and business groups weren’t thrilled at losing this bit of leverage during the job-negotiation process, which is what delayed NYC’s law from going into effect in May to November. And some listed salary ranges are still so wide that job hunters don’t find the info terribly useful. But others say at least now, they’ll avoid being kept in the dark throughout the entire job process, only to be lowballed with an offer at the end. “It definitely at least takes away one element of surprise or decision-making upfront,” a retail worker in Manhattan tells the Times. More here on your rights as a job seeker regarding what to say about salary history and expectations. (Read more salaries stories.)

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