Classified Salary Infuriates Job Applicants

When considering the perfect job position, applicants consider the location of the company, the working hours, the type of work, the salary, etc. However, in Korea, it is not always easy for job applicants to obtain salary information when considering a position. Often, only until after they accept a position do they find it out.

Article from eDaily:

Job applicants don’t know how much they will get paid. Hidden salary, fretting job applicants

"I'm curious of my salary" "It will be based on the company's regulation."  "Once you sign the contract, we will let you know."

“I’m curious about my salary”“It will be based on the company’s regulations.”“Once you sign the contract, we will let you know.”

Mr. Park lost his chance to interview after asking about the annual salary. He said “Annual salary is one of the most important pieces of information when choosing a company. I can’t understand why my question was problematic.”

Mr. Kim(25) who recently got a job in a company was embarrassed to see his first paycheck. It was only 950,000 won which was much lower than the lowest basic monthly income. When he asked the human resources department, they replied that only 80% of the basic salary would be given during a probation period. He was supposed to go to work early, and stay late while learning about his job. Now he is thinking of changing jobs.

In one of the worst job markets ever, the number of so called ‘in-the-dark applicants’, job applicants that accept a position without knowing the salary, has increased. As a result, though they got a job, they are upset by the pay.

Last month, Job Korea, an online job-search portal, analysed the recruiting information of 1,000 companies that wanted to hire university graduates. Only 27% out of 1,000 companies notified applicants of their pay levels.

Mr Kim(29), a job applicant, said, “Getting a job is a such a big turning point and the annual salary is a crucial standard for people in choosing jobs. It is hard to understand that I can’t find out how much I will be paid.”

Saramin, another online job-search portal, did a survey on 877 applicants. 4 out of 10 said they have quit their jobs after passing the final interview. About 39% of them cited that working conditions were different from what they had seen in the job advertisement. About 33% of them said the annual salary that a company offered didn’t meet their expectations.

One company recruiter said, “Applicants who ask about salary before being hired are considered opportunistic. They follow the money, leaving when it’s convenient for them, so it is natural to for them to have disadvantages in recruiting.”

Another said, “People evaluate a company based on the salary it gives. If the salary is lower than applicants’ expectations, it might harm the company’s image. That’s why we are not transparent about the salary offered to them.”

Many sites that publicize salaries of some major companies are popping up. These sites notify the public of a company’s the annual salary either by directly receiving data from companies, or from the site members. However, this information doesn’t reflect different pay roll systems, that form a gap between stated salary and the actual salary that workers really receive. Even some sites charge some money for membership, and inaccurate information upsets users.

A representative from the Ministry of Employment and Labor stated, “It is recommended that companies notify applicants of the exact annual salary in order to assist job applicants in their decision. Legally, however, we cannot force them to.” Mr Kim, a consultant at Korea Job Consultants Association, said that, “A variety of conditions, such as annual salary, are necessary to help job applicants choose where to work.”

Comments from Daum:


They apply for a job in order to make money, not for the sake of working. This whole country is running crazy and so are the companies. Are they turning all citizens into slaves, ke ke.


When job applicants submit their resumes, it’s fair for the companies to let them know the salary.. If the salary isn’t good enough for them, they can give up the position.


While common people were in agony, they helped Yoo Byeong-eon, the leader of the Salvation Sect, flee like a VIP, and described Moon Chang-geuk as if he was some anti-Japan independence fighter. Not to mention the Sewol ferry tragedy and their blood-sucking demand for tithes. Let’s go till the end, gae-dok and Gwanpia(bureaucrat + mafia).


They don’t let their applicants know their salaries in advance because they have no intention to offer good salaries. They want native-fluent English speakers who can do almost everything that needs to be done in the company to work for over 12 hours rather than 9 hours on paper, for only 18 million won a year. They just order their workers around rather than teach them what to do. And then, they say young people are jobless because they’re too weak-minded to work. Put yourself in their shoes. You can’t help but curse.

자라나는 숲님:

Even when experienced workers move to another place, they have to go through a probation period again, ke ke. Executives in small companies should think about how they would feel if their children were working for such companies before criticizing young job applicants’ standards.


Companies want to know every single detail about their job applicants, but they don’t disclose information to them, especially the salary?! When people sign a contract, they should know the salary, so I can’t understand why they keep it secret for as long as they do. Don’t tell me they don’t even sign a contract, which is illegal. If they get to know their salary on the first pay day, they will be even more pissed off and quit the job. It is fair for the companies to notify the salary in advance.


Companies don’t even give your resume back. Why would they not let their applicants know the salary? Bastards.


It is their trick to save on wages. Nothing new for small companies. That’s why people don’t want to work for small companies. However, medium-sized companies are different! There are many mid-sized companies that are better than big companies to their employees.


I’m working for a small company and every employee has to go through a probation period in which they get paid 80% of the basic salary. During the probation period, they still do things that other regular employees do. Who the hell made this kind of system? Who is this country for? I feel sorry for having a child in this situation.


The rich satisfy their greed by exploiting the poor.


I give my personal information out and to be fair, the company should do the same.


Companies are taking advantage of their position in full force. Who would want to begin working without knowing how much they will get paid? Are they slaves?


They want to know every detail about their job applicants, even family background which is irrelevant to the job. But they don’t notify their applicants of the salary, which is the most important part, ke ke. They are really hopeless.


Huh??? Isn’t it important to know the salary when you look for a job?? How can you get a job not knowing how much you will get paid???? That doesn’t seem to make sense. If you get disadvantages for asking about the salary and benefits, it shows that the company is that bad, which means you don’t even need to apply for it.


Well, fuck!! If it is opportunist to ask about the salary you will get, everyone in the world is opportunist. That interviewer looks like opportunist. He has nowhere else to go, so he has to suck the blood of his company.

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