Digital salaries – The White Elephant In The Room

Digital salaries – The White Elephant In The Room
SHARE
THIS



In this guest post, Resolution’s head of people, Jess Rogers (pictured below), says digital-savvy employees are changing they way salaries are negotiated. And it’s no longer a Mexican Stand-off as employees go for the maximum and employers start at the bottom…

Digital salaries continue to skyrocket. The price war for talent has hit nuclear proportions. It’s time to recruit the merry men and band together.

AAEAAQAAAAAAAAe3AAAAJDczN2NjM2U2LTljNWItNDU4Mi05MDY2LWVjNTNhZDBjNjVjZQ

Back in my day, salary negotiations were a skill. Everyone knew the deal. The company would come in at the lowest possible rate, and the employee would negotiate from there. Any ground gained on the employee side was a win and something to feel great about. As long as a happy medium was reached, there were no hard feelings about the company’s original offer.

Many painful salary conversations later, we have grudgingly acknowledged that the digital playing field has shifted. It’s time to approach ‘the salary chat’ from a different perspective. The good ol’ way of offering the bare minimum and negotiating from there no longer cuts the cake. Talent now see this approach as a major breach of trust, and companies’ risk offending their well-informed sensibilities.

On the other hand, companies who sway the other way and succumb to the temptation of ridiculous salary increases put pressure on their bottom line. Pressure that results in severe under-resourcing, working those same employees to the bone.

For the second year running, Resolution has been recognised as An Employer of Choice by the Australian Business Awards. In the spirit of celebration, we would like to share with you some of the lessons we have learnt.

  1. Salary banding

Invest time in updating your salary bands. Make sure to pay attention to your organisation’s specific context. If you are agency-side, do not compare yourself with client-side digital salaries. For the right employee, working across multiple clients is attractive enough to sway the ball back in your court. Equally, be careful about using the salary bands your predecessor set yonks ago.

  1. Honesty, trust and good faith

For those of you who managed to sit through high school economics without dosing off, please forgive my simplistic description of opportunity cost. I was a snoozer.

We’ve all experienced it at one time or another. You are headed to the shop, excited at the prospect of that new phone | TV | couch | designer item you’ve been waiting to buy, only to be slapped in the face with 20+ options. No matter what choice you make, there are 19 other options you have missed out on. Your purchase satisfaction takes a dive.

Experience has taught me that engaging in an endless salary negotiation can be likened to the above situation. No matter what the outcome, the focus becomes whatever is missed out on. We have changed our approach and no longer get stuck in salary negotiation loops that leave both parties feeling dizzy and ripped off. We offer what we feel is a fair and reasonable amount for the skills and experience the talent brings to the table. Our employees can trust that we are not whittling them down to save every penny. Likewise, we are not paying them exorbitant rates that blow up our salary line, and ultimately force us to work them into the ground.

  1. Address underperformance

This is the big one. Salary equity perception does not work the same way here, digital talent won’t compare apples with apples. Not only will underperformance be seen as a gross injustice, but equity perception will shift as people inevitably compare their salary with that of an underperformer – regardless of level.

Here is an example of a conversation I have had hundreds of times with junior digital talent:

“John’s salary is higher than mine because he’s an Account Director. I contribute more than he does. I should be on more money than him.”

Don’t be afraid to rip the Band-Aid off. Shifting perceptions and expectations around salaries takes time, commitment, and bravery. Prepare for there to be some causalities – you will find this isn’t always a bad thing. The overall impact on your organisation will be worth it. The relationship between you and your talent will change for the better. You will helping the talent war efforts in a big way.

 

Please login with linkedin to comment

Designworks Resolution RTB salaries

Latest News

“We’re In Big-Bang Readiness”: Flight Centre To Ramp Up Media Buying Activity
  • Advertising
  • Marketing
  • Media

“We’re In Big-Bang Readiness”: Flight Centre To Ramp Up Media Buying Activity

Flight Centre Travel Group is anticipating some of its biggest years of growth as Australia’s vaccination rollout gains momentum, travel restrictions ease and international borders start re-opening. With travel industry leaders forecasting unprecedented demand for both domestic and international travel as the world moves into a phase of post-COVID management, Flight Centre Australia general manager […]

Acast Announces New Podcast ‘The Elements’
  • Media

Acast Announces New Podcast ‘The Elements’

From the audio producer of The Teacher’s Pet comes The Elements, a new Acast Creator Network podcast hosted by Thredbo survivor Stuart Diver. The Elements is a  podcast that journeys into the heart of surviving a natural disaster and will be hosted and distributed by the creator-first podcast company Acast as part of the Acast Creator […]

Herd MSL Announces Foxtel Account Win
  • Advertising
  • Marketing

Herd MSL Announces Foxtel Account Win

Comms agency Herd MSL announces Foxtel win. Forgoes office party poppers on account of the new $1300 Dyson cordless vac.

DoubleVerify Launches Enhancements To Brand Safety And Suitability Solution
  • Technology

DoubleVerify Launches Enhancements To Brand Safety And Suitability Solution

DoubleVerify has today announced enhancements to its brand safety and suitability solution that include the introduction of DV’s Brand Safety Floor as a turnkey option, extending Brand Suitability Tiers on YouTube, and more. Available to both advertisers and publishers since January 2021, Brand Suitability Tiers allow brands to align suitability settings with their own unique standards, […]

Aimee Buchanan Lands GroupM CEO Job
  • Media

Aimee Buchanan Lands GroupM CEO Job

Aimee Buchanan quits OMD to take up GroupM CEO role. Leaving gift ideas include mounted moose head & ALDI traffic cones.

Retired Marketing Man Andrew Piccoli Speaks About His Children’s Book ‘Dexter The Dahu’
  • Marketing

Retired Marketing Man Andrew Piccoli Speaks About His Children’s Book ‘Dexter The Dahu’

Andrew Piccoli spent his career overseeing some of Australia’s most memorable ad campaigns. Now, he has turned his attention to a particular area of passion: children’s literature. Now retired, Piccoli spent the COVID-19 lockdown writing the story of Dexter the Dahu for children aged between five and nine. He has donated a copy of the charming […]