The Ontario government is introducing new employment laws that, among other changes, will force employers to disclose salary information in job postings, a move employment experts say is good for both job seekers and employers. .
“At a time when many companies are posting record profits, it is only fair that they transparently communicate how they pay workers,” said David Piccini, Ontario’s Minister of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development, announcing a series of updates to the province’s labor legislation
Among the changes are several aimed at the hospitality sector, including new rules prohibiting unpaid work in the form of trial shifts and stipulations prohibiting employers from deducting wages for dine-and-runs, gas-and-runs, or any other property. stolen
Chief among them will be a new requirement for employers in the province to include the salary range for the position in any job advertisement.
British Columbia and Prince Edward Island enacted similar laws last year and Ontario itself had planned to implement even stricter requirements than those outlined Tuesday in 2018, but the legislation died when the incumbent Liberal government was voted against it.
Job seekers like Kawal Preet Kaur say the move is a step in the right direction and long overdue. She is an internationally trained doctor who taught at a medical school in her native India, but she has failed to permanently enter either the medical or academic fields in Canada after two years of trying.
While he says there are many frustrating reasons for this, a basic process improvement for everyone would be to require compensation details to be included in job offers.
Too often, a job applicant will doubt themselves when asked about their salary expectations, because if the figure is too high, they will be rejected, but if it is too low, “they will think that there may be some deficiencies in the candidate,” said. “This goes both ways.”
This is a huge waste of time and effort for both parties. She estimates that from the moment you begin the job search process (from searching for job sites, filtering for suitable jobs, tailoring a resume and cover letter, and reviewing the application, including a possible interview), it takes a full work day to apply for a job in a way that gives the applicant a fair opportunity to get the job.
Posting salary ranges “definitely helps both employers and employees…because it saves unnecessary applications for those jobs.”
As it stands, only about 37 per cent of all online job postings in Ontario last year included salary information.
Kristina McDougall runs Artemis Canada, an executive search firm that recruits leaders for technology companies. She says the companies she works with believe strongly in transparency in general.
“Requiring transparency across the board… provides companies with good data,” he said in an interview. “They can see what the compensation is like before they post a position or before they start looking for new employees.”
That doesn’t mean it’s easy or that everyone welcomes it with open arms. “It requires making sure that pay equity occurs, not just when people walk in the door but throughout the organization,” he said. “There are some organizations that I think will see that it’s an uncomfortable thing to do.”
But ultimately, both sides of the labor market will benefit from establishing ground rules on what can often be an uncomfortable topic.
“It’s taboo to talk about compensation, so it’s not always comfortable – especially for someone who has less experience in a job search process – to ask about money at the beginning,” she said.
There is no easy solution
Economist Armine Yalnizyan says the new rules are a step in the right direction toward full transparency – and pay equity – but on their own they won’t do much to end the pay gap between men and women, or between different marginalized groups.
According to government data, women in Ontario earn an average of $0.87 for every dollar earned by men, a figure that is worse for racialized and Indigenous women.
“Discrimination is color-coded,” Yalnizyan said. “Wage discrimination always affects people who employers say should feel lucky to have a job.”
Full details of the proposal were not included in the legislation introduced Tuesday, and Yalnizyan says it’s difficult to know how effective the measure could be without knowing the nitty-gritty.
“It may not affect the wage gap at all,” he said. “Because it’s not just about more information, but about doing something with that information and changing behavior patterns.”