Hiring Wisdom: Will Raising Pay Get You Better Hourly Employees?

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The following is my response to an item on Retail Wire concerning the fact that The Gap has announced they are going to raise the starting wage of employees to $9.00 an hour this year and $10 next year.

  • This is a great move for the Gap for all kinds of reasons. Will it motivate employees? NO. Money has been proven to not be a key motivator over the long run at the frontline level. (Lack of money, however, has proven to be a demotivator.)
  • Will it help attract more and possibly better candidates to apply? Yes.
  • Will management be able to determine who the better candidates are? Maybe.
  • Will paying people more get them to work harder over the long run? NO!
  • Will it get people to stay longer? The more you pay, the more frustration and inept management employees will put up with.

Here’s what you need to do

Still confused? Here’s the winning combination:

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  1. Pay more and hire better people.
  2. Give those people a reason to work hard and feel good about the job they do.
  3. Make sure you have great managers that great people want to work for.
  4. Pay what the job is worth (rather than the lowest rate you can get somebody to do the job for).

This was originally published on Mel Kleiman’s Humetrics blog.

Mel Kleiman, CSP, is an internationally-known authority on recruiting, selecting, and hiring hourly employees. He has been the president of Humetrics since 1976 and has over 30 years of practical experience, research, consulting and professional speaking work to his credit. Contact him at mkleiman@humetrics.com.

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1 Comment on “Hiring Wisdom: Will Raising Pay Get You Better Hourly Employees?

  1. I am uncomfortable and skeptical when any author who makes broad sweeping statements with no evidence.
    Mr Kleiman, what is your souce for — Money has been proven to not be a key motivator over the long run at the frontline level.

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