Why Providing Proof of Previous Salary should be Refused by Prospective Employees

The nerve racking moment when a prospective Employer after completing with the initial rounds of interview, ask the job seekers to provide proof of previous salary, it comes with many other questions such as Why are you looking to work for our company over another? Why did you leave your last job? But it is when the proof is asked is when you lose your bargaining power with the company.


It is important to realistically answer the questions with a bit of diplomacy so as to not offend anyone of the interviewer. But, it is amidst this flow of standard questions, it is imperative to understand when general questions become overly personal. When an employer asking a question to disclose information on their past salary is downright intrusive, this has become a norm in the hiring process; some fields even make it ‘mandatory’. As someone who isn’t bound to any form of paperwork stating the same, you are in full right and capacity to turn down this request.

Most newbies who are just starting out in the industry, can understand this plight, but many of them instead of standing up, comply with the companies as they believe it may help them become more employable in the long run. The moment when they finally realize that with experience, when you realize that it is standing up for yourself that impresses the authority you are dealing with. Hence, to this end you should know that you aren’t being unreasonable in refusing to disclose personal information.

Most companies state that the prospective employee should disclose the copies of salary document from their previous job. Even if they say that it is standard procedure and needs to be followed, refuse them because in any case, you will lose the negotiating capacity and advantage when you surrender your salary slip. You might quote a marginally higher salary than what you were getting paid before, and with the proof of this with the employer, he may marginally standardize your salary expectation. For instance, if you had received a monthly salary of Rs 35,000 at your previous job and quoted between Rs 45,000 and Rs 50,000 they might only provide you with Rs 40,000.

If they continue asking for your salary proof from your previous employer, you can politely that just they cannot disclose information regarding the salaries of their employees, you don’t feel comfortable disclosing yours as well. Instead quote the salary you would expect from the company for the job you are going to be undertaking, if they hesitate, then it’s your cue to get up and leave the interview. If they continue with the interview, then you’re still in the race.

According to an expert Liz Ryan, she says that the reason why interviewers ask for mandatory previous salary proof, is that in the data collection sheet or the web form makes it easy to screen people in or out, that is all they need it for.

For this purpose, certain applications online as well as through mail, require you to mandatory to fill out previous salary details. To avoid confusion, getting in touch with the company representative via e-mail or phone. Procure a meeting this way so as to avoid the problem of filling out the document. According to PBS Newshour, you should just be straight up from the beginning of the interview. You should lead the question by asking the salary range they will be providing for the posted position has been defined, the salary cannot be secret.

You’re worth more than the job that needs to verify your monetary value of your previous experience. You are entitled to your privacy.