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Does this make any sense?

My husband had a second interview yesterday. The hiring company had already paid for a background check and called six references. They knew his salary history as he'd included it in his application.

At the end of the second interview, they asked him, "Why would you take a job that pays so little?"

He told them he didn't know the pay; no one had given him any indication. They gave him a number that was 55% of what he'd been earning before. After taxes and commute costs, he'd be doing better on unemployment. He told them he couldn't take that pay, and the interview was over.

We're pretty certain that means this job is a no-go. But I don't understand why a company would go through so much time and expense to lowball someone? It's a waste of their time as well as his.

Answer Question

Asked by Anonymous at 2:44 PM on Oct. 17, 2009 in Money & Work

Answers (8)
  • Sounds like they thought your DH knew how much the pay was when they started the process...Someone on their end dropped the ball I would guess...Or it could be that with the way things are people are taking any job they can get and they thought they could offer your DH any # and he would take's fustrating but that's what happens sometimes.

    Answer by bumblebeestingu at 2:50 PM on Oct. 17, 2009

  • During a time of high unemployment (such as now) companies most likely assume they can get a better qualified employee than they normally would based on the pay because so many people are desperate for work.

    Answer by Anonymous at 3:01 PM on Oct. 17, 2009

  • Why did he walk in there without researching the company? He could have asked the salary range in the first interview if he was clueless.

    Answer by halfpint_ny at 3:52 PM on Oct. 17, 2009

  • OP here. Thanks for the answers so far.

    He had researched the company and the market rate for the position and had no reason to believe they'd go so low.

    What mystifies me is that they would spend so much time and money on checking out a candidate and make an offer that was patently ridiculous.

    Answer by Anonymous at 5:10 PM on Oct. 17, 2009

  • By hiring company do you mean headhunter? Or did he go through the corp recruiter (like the HR of the company rather than a department head?) I have found both so disconnected from the actual position it is crazy. My husbands company gives him a list of "pre-screened" candidates from HR and he has interviewed some only to find out the same thing- the salary is way below what the candidate would accept.. he goes back to HR and asks- how is this pre-screened and they have no answer. All he can figure out is they pay their screeners like $20K and they have no idea how to recruit for a $60K/year job....

    Answer by Anonymous at 7:16 PM on Oct. 17, 2009

  • This was a direct hire by the employer.

    Answer by Anonymous at 7:23 PM on Oct. 17, 2009

  • in this economy, the company may not have thought about it the way you are. Some people are so desperate that they will take a 55% reduction. The ball is in their court as far as salary goes-many companies are lowering their salary offerings b/c of their own money troubles and/or they know they can get people cheaper.
    It sounds like they were definitely interested in him--but if the offer doesn't suit your needs then he needs to try again with someone else.
    Keep in mind, you may not be able to be that picky....a job is a job.

    Answer by Anonymous at 9:38 PM on Oct. 17, 2009

  • That's pretty much what I figured, :38. We have talked about how low he could go, and we can manage about a 25% cut. But more than that just wouldn't be possible, and they were talking considerably more.

    Answer by Anonymous at 9:46 PM on Oct. 17, 2009

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