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  #21  
Old 24.04.2021, 17:56
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Re: Recruitment at big pharma

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Dear all,


Does big pharma (e.g. Novartis) really only give you one final offer after the interview process and it is basically take it or leave it?
One year ago I got an offer from the big pharma company as non-negotiable. They basically said that I should either accept or decline, so I have accepted.
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  #22  
Old 24.04.2021, 18:16
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Re: Recruitment at big pharma

Bringing a newbie in at a higher salary than current employees can be a nightmare.
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  #23  
Old 24.04.2021, 20:23
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Re: Recruitment at big pharma

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Bringing a newbie in at a higher salary than current employees can be a nightmare.
There is a salary range for each role, and a newby isnít always at the lowest end. People with experience change companies but they usually donít like to go down in salaries.
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  #24  
Old 24.04.2021, 20:29
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Re: Recruitment at big pharma

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There is a salary range for each role, and a newby isnít always at the lowest end. People with experience change companies but they usually donít like to go down in salaries.
Yes, but for HR it can be a headache. Itís not like they are looking for the best candidate, they are looking for the ones that donít give them headaches. And I donít suppose there is a shortage of candidates either.
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  #25  
Old 24.04.2021, 20:29
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Re: Recruitment at big pharma

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There is a salary range for each role, and a newby isnít always at the lowest end. People with experience change companies but they usually donít like to go down in salaries.
and Switzerland has a weird "salary taboo" culture where no-one seems to speak about their salary with their colleagues...

I had a candidate that I REALLY wanted, and his salary expectations were not in line with the grade/salary-band. Ended up asking him if he could wait a few more days, as we needed to open a new position at a higher grade... but he definitely had the experience to match the higher grade. Was win-win.
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  #26  
Old 25.04.2021, 06:48
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Re: Recruitment at big pharma

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and Switzerland has a weird "salary taboo" culture where no-one seems to speak about their salary with their colleagues...
If people openly talked about their salaries, there would be some interesting consequences. Yes, some will get very upset they're low, others may be surprised they're above others when they probably shouldn't be. Eventually, this would feedback to the managers and HR, and they would need to do something considering how unbalanced it is in practice.

This happened last year when I was leaving Big Pharma. I told two others in a meeting what I was earning then and with my new job. The new guy was earning a little more than me, which was annoying to me given my experience and qualifications over him. I was more than happy to tell him about my new wage.

The girl cried realizing how low she was. She's complained to her manager and asked if it was because she was female. She got a 10-15% bump up this year and HR even took the time to show her the salary bands, which are usually not shared with individual contributors. She's been there for 7 years. Now they're trying to get her in some other roles to increase her visibility, which I hope will set her up for another bump.

In short, it's a struggle out there to increase earnings only as a laborer in the Swiss market, unless you move jobs. Companies prey on the illusion of no inflation in Switzerland and these companies don't try to earn your loyalty, and in practice, they really don't.
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  #27  
Old 25.04.2021, 07:30
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Re: Recruitment at big pharma

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Switzerland has a weird "salary taboo" culture where no-one seems to speak about their salary with their colleagues...
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If people openly talked about their salaries, there would be some interesting consequences. Yes, some will get very upset they're low, others may be surprised they're above others when they probably shouldn't be. Eventually, this would feedback to the managers and HR, and they would need to do something considering how unbalanced it is in practice.
Yup this is the reason people do not openly talk about salaries and I am very surprised Spinal that as a recruiter you are not aware of the potential consequences of this. It's just common sense.
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  #28  
Old 25.04.2021, 08:30
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Re: Recruitment at big pharma

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Yup this is the reason people do not openly talk about salaries and I am very surprised Spinal that as a recruiter you are not aware of the potential consequences of this. It's just common sense.
I've managed people across many companies, and almost as many countries in three continents. There are different cultures in both countries and companies. I've had some interesting conversations with HR and people (HR sometimes are also people ) around "why you shouldn't share salary details", and the "consequences" of this.

All I can say, is there are companies (even in CH) that publish to ALL their staff the salary bands except the highest (c-level), so everyone knows not just where they stand within a band, but also what your progression possibilities as are you develop. They seem to be having no adverse effects as a result. In fact, I was very impressed with this approach, as from what I could tell, there were barely any differences in terms of remuneration between different demographics.

There are some companies/countries where the culture is that staff chat openly and share their salaries... This is a bit different, as then you never know if someone is telling the truth... but that's not so guided by leadership. This is more an unwritten corporate culture in some places. Again, the companies seem to be doing well, and not self-combusting...

I'm quite proopeness; reason being, unless we openly talk about this sort of thing, we wont acknowledge the injustices that come from discriminating based on age, gender, religion, etc. That's not to say we should publish everyone's individual salary... and that's also not to say that this is without it's downsides... but I see the downsides of the open approach being less than the downsides of the secretive approach...

EDIT: Forgot to say, the government department (UK) that I used to work for almost a decade ago also published salary bands openly. I think they still do.
EDIT2: The BBC in the UK I believe publishes staff salaries in bands of £5000 for high earners too
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  #29  
Old 25.04.2021, 09:55
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Re: Recruitment at big pharma

This salary benchmarking is all well and good for HR/Finance people but in niche industries that a company like Novartis is in specifically when it comes to critical elements like R & D it is counterproductive.To get the best people you must pay way above the bog standard benchmarking and the best don’t spend their days googling job boards. Just look how a company like Novartis is doing on new product approvals and it is not good so they fall on their own sword. The days of big companies developing new products are gone due to this myopic policy, to innovate the big companies must buy start ups or go down the J and J road and pay top buck for an already developed cash cow.
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  #30  
Old 25.04.2021, 10:17
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Re: Recruitment at big pharma

Publishing salary bands is pretty much the rule in the public sector.

Personally, I think it would be a good thing if every company published its salary band for transparency.
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  #31  
Old 25.04.2021, 11:14
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Re: Recruitment at big pharma

The company where I work has those min max salary bands for each functional level opened for their permanent employees. I was working for this company for many years on first permanent — later contractor basis and was aware about the numbers in these salary bands. So when I received the permanent offer last year, I was contracting for this company and knew that the offered salary was OK. But this salary band was not officially shared with me during the offer. If someone is a complete newcomer to the company and doesn’t know about this band, they might be up for a surprise when they get employed and see it for the first time.
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  #32  
Old 25.04.2021, 12:23
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Re: Recruitment at big pharma

Go consulting on +6 month contracts at the time, then it is easier to negotiate an hourly rate. Once you build up your CV as a contractor, the salaries will shoot up into stratosphere.
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