What should I do if a coworker who started the same day as me makes 25k more?

Reply Sun 13 Nov, 2011 01:48 am
I started work for merrill lynch very recently and one of the other 10 people who started work the same day as me and are required to gain the same licensing, I found out gets paid almost 30 grand more than me. He did not finish college but he did work as at bank for 3 years which is the esperience that differentiates him from me. I graduated college and worked for a start up for a little more than a year.

It is really bothering me because essentially he sits there and does the same thing as me and gets paid more than 10 dollars an hour more. The interviewer told me initially that everyone gets the same amount of money but I guess that information is wrong because the coworker showed me his check. I know he has some applicable qualification by working at the bank but to make more than 1500 dollars a month than me is a slap in the face. I am just wondering how I should handle this situation because I am tempted to say something to the person who hired me. I dont feel it is fair at all and should be allowed to say something without getting fired...right?
Reply Sun 13 Nov, 2011 05:01 am
Possibly he can spell better than you?
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Reply Sun 13 Nov, 2011 06:28 am
Is it $25 k or $30 k?

What this may prove is that he's a better negotiator than you are.

How long has he been licensed as compared to you? Does he have additional licenses?

It sure sounds that you were lied to, doesn't it? Perhaps the other new employee's training at the other bank had used software or some application that is specific to the job?

If you say something too specific about salary differential of newbies to your hirer, you risk your future or the other person's future there. If you are vague and don't name your source but call the hirer on their lie to you.. you could run risk, as well.

The trouble is that you would have to point the finger at the other new guy as your source unless you can figure out how to express it. HR people categorically advise strongly against discussing their salaries.

You have a serious issue. Perhaps someone else can help you better than I can. In this woeful hiring environment, you may have to think long and hard about this...but you really have an issue and that is with HR.

I know as recent as 5 years ago in this situation the HR of a major corporation I worked for was willing to disclose the salary ranges in terms of percentiles when reviewing salaries of people with similar experience. They showed the salary brackets of all current employees in my same situation based on their experience and time in the position. HR at ML could have the same arrangement..or not.
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Reply Sun 13 Nov, 2011 11:34 am
First thing you need to decide is what you will do if, when you bring it up to your supervisors, they say "that's the way it is, take it or leave it."

Is it important enough to you that you would quit your job and chance being one of the many unemployed for the next 6 to 12 months while looking for another job?

You might also want to be sure you have all the facts. Perhaps, since he's already shown you his paycheck, ask to see his job description so you can verify that you are both filling the same job requirements with the same standards of performance.

You might be filling the same job requirements, but does his customer base require any different knowledge or experience than yours does? Does his job include any technical reporting requirements that yours does not?

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Reply Mon 14 Nov, 2011 10:01 am
It is most likely because the company felt his experience warranted the extra money. Perhaps he brought in alot of money for his previous employer. You can't possibly know all his qualifications. Many employers value previous work experience over education as your prior work experience is more applicable to the job. You may require greater training.

You can sit and stew there or you can show that you are a better worker and thus should get a higher raise.

What is the situation as when you are due to receive an increase? When you know this is coming up, be prepared to discuss how you performed. Also, I'd imagine it sounds like you have a job that may be in part compensated through commissions - if that is the case, then wouldn't your base be small compared to commissions?
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Reply Mon 14 Nov, 2011 10:02 am
Also, be warned some companies have rules against discussing their compensation - it could be grounds for dismisal depending on their policy so beware prior to discussing with your hiring manager.
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Reply Mon 14 Nov, 2011 10:08 am
You took the job at the agreed-upon salary.
As long as the company pays you what you agreed to, you have no case.
If he hadn't showed you his check, you'd be OK, right?

By the way, why did he show you his check?
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Reply Mon 14 Nov, 2011 10:23 am
What should you do?

1. Keep your mouth shut as you could both be fired as a result of the exchange of income information (look at your contract to see what the company policy is in these matters) .

2. Put your time in so you've got better relevant work experience.

3. Learn how to negotiate better.

I dont feel it is fair at all and should be allowed to say something without getting fired...right?

4. Get over the idea that life is fair. It's not.
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