NYC Worker Saw Her Company Was Hiring For Her Job Title But Paying $90K More And Applied For It

NYC Worker Saw Her Company Was Hiring For Her Job Title But Paying $90K More And Applied For It
Cover Image Source: Pexels | Marek Levak

Editor's note: This article was originally published on May 23, 2023. It has since been updated.

A UX (user experience) writer from New York City is going viral on Twitter after she posted about learning a role at her company with her job title was offering up to $90,000 more, all thanks to the salary transparency law in the state, and eventually applying for it. Kimberly Nguyen, 25, works on a contract basis for Citigroup. She talked about the pay discrepancy when the company posted a job opening with the same job description as hers, on LinkedIn. As the company was in NYC, it had to mention the intended pay in the listing adhering to the new pay transparency law. After looking at the job posting, Kimberly went ahead and applied for the post. She wrote on Twitter, "My company just listed on LinkedIn a job posting for what I’m currently doing (so we’re hiring another UX writer) and now thanks to salary transparency laws, I see that they intend to pay this person $32k-$90k more than they currently pay me, so I applied."

The Pay Discrepancy 

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Kimberly told CNBC that she earns $85,000 annually working as a contractor with Citi. A Citi spokesperson told the publication that a company called Photon (a contractor service) negotiates the individual's pay rate for the company. In her follow-up tweets, she said that she has been asking for a raise for months now. 

"I have also been arguing for months about the pay inequity. I have told my managers multiple times that I know I’m being underpaid. I have gotten the runaround, and they know they can do this right now in a tough labor market." she tweeted.

She also talked about how she fears that her job might be in "jeopardy" especially after she posted the link in the group chat, which prompted the management to call for an emergency meeting.

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"As a contractor, I’m in a pretty vulnerable position," she said. “The full-time employee conversion is being dangled in front of me like a reward that I’m not sure I’m guaranteed."

Conversation About Salaries

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Pexels | Karolina Grabowska
Pexels | Karolina Grabowska

She closed her Twitter thread by saying that she is now on the market for a new UX writer job either remote or in NYC and expects a remuneration of $125,000 based on her skill set and the market. Besides being a UX writer, she is also a poet and has written several books. She said she never expected the thread to blow up in this manner and that she is glad, it resonated with many. "I’m really glad a dialogue is being opened. I’m glad companies are feeling more pressure, but nobody wins if we just all get each other fired,” Kimberley wrote on Twitter. Instead, she encourages people to call their elected officials to get transparency laws passed in their state. Finally, she added, "Talk about your salary!"

In the past decade, a string of initiatives and incidents have encouraged people to discuss salaries.

1. A Pittsburg-based woman started encouraged others on Twitter to talk about how much they earn with the hashtag #talkpay

2. An embarrassing Sony hack revealed the pay discrepancies between male and female workers. 

3. Then President Obama signed an executive order in 2014, prohibiting the secrecy of salary information and said, "Pay secrecy fosters discrimination and we should not tolerate it". 

What Can The Employees Do?

Pexels | Andrea Piacquadio

Pexels | Andrea Piacquadio

1. Learn from your experience and your peers in the industry. 

2. Regularly look for jobs, even when are absolutely content at your current job, keep polishing your resume and portfolio.

3. Focus on networking and remember that starting a conversation about your pay is no longer something to shun. Asking candidly if a salary increase is in line is never a bad idea.

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