Starting Tuesday, employers in New York City have to include a "good faith" salary range in all job postings, following the lead of states like Colorado, Connecticut, and Nevada.
Some experts told Insider that it's a significant step toward reducing wage gaps, but that the law only covers salary — not full compensation — and that workers still need to continue advocating for themselves.
Dave Carhart, vice president of people at people management platform Lattice, said the new law in New York City and a similar statewide law coming to California in 2023 are "big developments."
"It's one tool in advancing pay equity," Carhart told Insider. "It doesn't — on its own — achieve it, but I do think it's an important change."
He said he expects more states to follow suit and that companies should be sharing with potential employees full compensation information – stocks, health benefits, and development opportunities — even if that is not mandated by law.
"There can be a real trade-off. It's really important for companies to actively have a strategy to communicate the other parts of their total rewards package."
On Hannah Williams' TikTok account — dubbed Salary Transparent Street — she interviews strangers across the US about their pay. Her video on New York City's pay-transparency law attracted skeptics.
"As much as I agree with this, they'll just put an insane range like $50k-$200k and you'll still have no idea what to ask," one person commented.
Williams, a former data analyst, told Insider she encourages applicants to continue pushing for more realistic ranges.
"It gives off an essence that you're trying to hide something. You're not being forthcoming, and you're not working with the law."
The definition of "good faith" in the law's wording also has been called into question on social platforms.
"We've previously used social media to hold companies accountable with racial, gender, or any type of social movement," Williams said. "This is also one of those movements where we're going to hold companies accountable."
Ultimately, she said, it's all about communication. Williams also said she has noticed a trend: Workers who make between $50,000-$150,000 are more eager to share their salary information than those who made more or less. She said people who make below this range are usually embarrassed, while those who make a larger amount are more private with the information — all contributing to the lack of transparency.
According to recent Lattice surveys, 25% of employees know the pay range of their job while 9% knows the range of the next level. Although it's unclear where respondents worked, this number could increase as more people have access to salary range data.
If you've just found out you're making less than others doing the same job, Williams and Carhart agree that you should not overreact.
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