Should Candidates Include Salary Requirements on Resumes?

In general, you should NOT include salary information on your resume. Sometimes your prospective employers may ask for your salary requirements or salary history, but unless there is a penalty for omission, such as your resume will be rejected, do not include the information.

By including salary requirements on your resume, you could convey a false impression or create restrictions for your prospective employers, causing them to bypass your resume and there is usually room for negotiation at a later stage of the hiring process.

If you include a salary requirement that is lower than what the position you are applying would generally receive, you mark yourself as cheap or lacking experience and may not get the offer you would like. On the other hand, if you indicate a figure that is too high, then you mark yourself as too expensive and may rule yourself out of the runnings.

So what should you do if a prospective employer has specifically requested you to include the salary information? Here are 5 tips to help you out:

1. Don’t be too specific:

If you really wish to include salary history on your resume, try to avoid including specific salary figures and use a salary range instead.

For example:

“In my past positions, I have earned between $40,000 and $60,000. I will be pleased to discuss this further with you during the interview. I have been making mid-$40,000. I am sure that your company pays a competitive salary.”

2. If you are asked to include a salary requirement, you can follow the same rule:

“I am hoping to make $45,000 to $55,000 per year. But I am flexible and open to discussing compensation amounts.”

3. Talk about benefits instead:

I am flexible as to monetary compensation because other benefits such as health insurance and pension are just as important.

4. Avoid misunderstandings:

You should make sure that you differentiate between salary and other benefits such as bonus, paid vacation, and health benefits. When asked for your salary requirements, you should not include these side benefits, or your resume may be rejected because your figures are too high.

In addition, it is important that you do thorough research and know exactly what the average salary for someone with your skills and experience is in the industry before you state your salary requirements on your resume.

5. Don’t focus on the money:

When you include your salary information, do not put it on a separate sheet of paper because this may give your prospective employer the impression that you focus too much on money.

When you submit your resume, you want the opportunity to interview with the company and demonstrate your strengths and attributes you can bring to role. You can discuss the money issues during your interview or after you receive a job offer.

Have you ever lost a job opportunity due to stating a salary requirement? Let us know in the comments below!

Image Credit: Shutterstock

By Casey Fleischmann