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My recruiter submitted me for Job A with a company I really like and this job paid X amount of dollars. Job A was filled so they offered to submit my resume to Job B with the same company. I took it for granted that they were the same salary since I was told that they are similar roles and because the recruiter already knew my salary requirements. Obviously, now that I look at it, I should've asked but didn't even think about it then.

I went through the onsite interview process with the company. Afterwards, the recruiter asked me again what I wanted for my base pay. I told them and they questioned me. They stated, "you do realize they're paying considerably less than X?" "No, you never told me that."

Today the company wanted to go forward with the hiring process. I never received an offer but my recruiter kept pushing me for the lower amount. This person was exasperating trying to haggle a lower price with me but I would actually lose money accepting it. Recruiter calls me back later in the day and states that the company is not happy and probably won't extend an offer.

I told the recruiter that I would send the company an apology letter for the miscommunication and the recruiter actually stated, "If you do that, they'll know we did something wrong." I replied, "Yeah". I sent the apologies, should I make a call? What should I do next?

  • 1
    Did you hire the recruiter or do they work for the potential employer? – mhoran_psprep Jul 24 '12 at 3:50
  • They work for the employer. – Brian Jul 24 '12 at 4:03
  • Was Job B related to A, but noticeably junior? (i.e., Job A was listed as "Senior Doohickey Tester", where B was simply "Doohickey Tester", or A was "Manager of Y" and B was "Lead Y Developer"?) That's one way I could excuse the recruiter not specifically mentioning the salary for B would be lower - because you could infer it by the difference in title. – Adam V Jul 24 '12 at 17:59
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Oh, definitely send the apology for the mis-communication. Describing the situation in detail. From the last bit it sounds like the recruiter screwed up, and what the recruiter means is that they'll know that the RECRUITER screwed up. And that's something you want them to know.

For the future, you'll know to quiz the recruiter about everything - even if it was just a mistake (as opposed to him being lazy), you've learned you need to keep an eye on these folks.

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It sounds like you've already done the right thing. There's no reason why you should take a hit because the recruiter neglected to advise you of the salary difference that existed between 'Job A' and 'Job B'.

Granted you should have asked, but if the recruiter was the one suggesting that you give 'Job B' a shot then they really should have advised you of any nontrivial differences between 'Job A' and 'Job B'. Salary differences count as "nontrivial".

Once when faced with a similar situation I actually sent an angry e-mail to the recruiter demanding that they admit their mistake directly to the employer so that I didn't have to waste my time doing it myself. It had a slightly better outcome in that case (the employer offered me the position at a reasonable salary; although I ultimately declined their offer), but otherwise pretty much played out as you describe.

As for what to do next, I don't know. You've already apologized in writing and set the record straight regarding the miscommunication. Beyond that I don't think there's much to do other than put this one behind you and move on to the next opportunity.

  • This is the reason I don't use "recruiting" firms. Its tough to avoid, but I had enough wasted days, that makes it worth just avoiding them all together. – Donald Jul 26 '12 at 15:39
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First of all you use the phrase "My recruiter submitted me for Job A with a company I really like and this job paid X amount of dollars" but according to your comment the recruiter worked for the employer.

Their job was to find somebody to fill certain positions at a price that makes the company a profit. The recruiter may have tried to sneak you into another position. The company already had evaluated your skills and background, and may have realized that they would not make the profit they needed in position A.

What you don't know is was this a decision by the recruiter to try and salvage time already invested in your evaluation? was this a shot in the dark to see if you would accept lower pay? or was this a decision by the company management and the recruiter was just playing their role.

If you believe the recruiter was at fault, it might be possible to negotiate a higher pay. Though if they have other potential candidates they may just go with another choice. Pushing the case may get the recruiter in trouble, but they could still reject you and fire the recruiter.

I would chalk it up to a lesson learned and move on.

  • There are three types of recruiters: ones who work the employer, ones who work for you, and ones that work for a 3rd party. Each has different motivations during the hiring process.
  • Add salary to the list of questions you always ask about.
  • Actually, we're usually advised NOT to bring up salary during the interview, unless the company does. But yes, definitely ask the recruiter. – Shawn V. Wilson Mar 9 '17 at 22:42

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