Singapore – In response to recent news that jobseekers are not mandated to reveal their last-drawn salary to a potential employer, the online community called for the practice to be made illegal as it is still prevalent.
Minister for Manpower, Josephine Teo said in Parliament on June 4 that there are no rules prompting jobseekers to reveal their last-drawn salaries, according to a commentary released by channelnewsasia.com. Employers should also not insist on potential candidates to declare the information.
While such news would be reassuring for individuals looking for greener pastures, reality states that about 95 per cent of firms, both local and international, regularly request for a jobseeker’s last-drawn salary, whether through physical or online application forms, the report noted. Candidates often don’t resist disclosing such information as this might cause them to lose the opportunity.
Ms Teo’s advice to jobseekers who face such issues would be to “Look for another employer as this is not a company that you should spend too much on.” Organisations shouldn’t gauge if an applicant is fit for a position based solely on their last-drawn salary.
Members from the online community wondered if it was possible to make the practice illegal since it has been discouraged by Ms Teo. A netizen urged the Ministry of Manpower to ban all employers from asking candidates their last pay.
“This is a very common practice so it won’t go away unless legally obliged,” said Elvira Ng who added that the opposite is true in other countries where it is the employer who discloses their offer and not the other way around. Leslie Goh agreed and noted it would make things easier for employers as well because it gives the candidate crucial details which will affect their decision from the start.
Meanwhile, Jerry JZ pointed out that the practice of low-balling promotes job-hopping, a costly risk for companies because they will need to spend more continually training new employees. A few admitted abolishing this “requirement” is easier said than done, especially during the current crisis. Human Resources will lowball especially when they know the candidate doesn’t have too many options, said Aaminah-Bariq Ikram.
As someone looking for a job and presented with the question, declining is not really an option because it might backfire.