Salary transparency in US job adverts is skyrocketing

Indeed’s Hiring Lab found a higher level of transparency in the West of the US, while visibility was more likely in adverts relating to jobs in childcare

The number of US job postings including salary information has skyrocketed from 18.4% to 43.7% over the past three years, according to a new report from Indeed.

This represents a staggering 137% rise between February 2020 and February 2023. 

While the employment website said new regulations requiring transparency in job adverts had made a significant impact, researchers also observed increases in areas without such rules. 

Salary visibility was found to be lower in the South, which accounted for 18 of the 20 least transparent metropolitan areas (500,000+ population).

Indeed’s Hiring Lab calculated pay transparency by dividing the number of unique US job postings with a salary on into the total count of unique advertisements. 

Legislation impacting pay transparency

It seems newly-introduced legislation has achieved the desired impact on employers who may otherwise have refrained from including salary information in their job advertisements. 

Colorado, California, Washington and New York City (the rest of New York state is expected to follow) are just some of the places where laws have been passed to address pay disparities. 

In the Centennial State, it was designed in particular to combat those based on sex or race. At the time of the bill being passed, just 16% of US job listings provided salary information. 

Indeed’s new report also points to other factors which have likely contributed to increased transparency.

According to previous research from the Hiring Lab, a higher rate of benefit advertisement in job adverts reflected market trends, while employers seem more willing to provide salary details to attract workers.

Moreover, given the rise in remote working since the pandemic, employers must abide by state regulations if they employ at least one worker in that particular area.

How do geography and job types affect salary visibility?

While the South scored poorly in terms of transparency, the West – where regulations are more commonplace – was the region to score best.

The metro area with the highest salary visibility was Denver-Aurora-Lakewood, Colorado (76.7%), followed by Colorado Springs (74.6%), Spokane-Spokane Valley, Washington (71.2%) and Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, Washington (70.1%).

All other areas to make the top 10 were in California, which is also home to the eight of the 10 areas with the fastest-growing transparency.

This perhaps comes as no surprise given regulations there came into force at the beginning of 2023.

Job postings for roles in childcare (75.9%), security and public safety (68.3%) and dentistry (63.1%) were found to have the most visible salary information, while a lower level of transparency can be expected in engineering (industrial 30.6% and chemical 31.4%) and banking and finance (31.8%).

Over the last 12 months, the most significant rise in visibility has occurred in high-earning jobs.

Read the full report: Pay Transparency in Job Postings Has More than Doubled Since 2020


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