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AGC gets clarification on wage-posting requirement

AGC gets clarification on wage-posting requirement – A new state law taking effect Jan. 1 requires employers to include specific wage or salary details and a description of benefits when they post a job opportunity.  Recently members of AGC’s HR Committee raised a specific concern about the new law and L&I’s draft policies.  That is, does the new requirement apply when contractors hire workers from union hiring halls? 

AGC members maintained that union dispatching is far different than job postings, help wanted ads and the like. 

Initially L&I believed the requirement, per the letter of the law in their view, would apply in those cases.  Members of the AGC HR Committee and legislative staff met with L&I, and ultimately convinced them that requests for workers from the hiring hall and the dispatching of those workers do not qualify as job postings.

“Based on the information you have shared with us, many communications between companies and unions would likely not meet the definition of a ‘posting’ because they are not solicitations intended to recruit job applicants and do not include qualifications for desired applicants,” said L&I Analyst Bridget Osborne in an email to AGC.   “For example, communication sent from a company to a union requesting workers to be placed on a project, would likely not constitute a job posting if the request is going directly to the union, is not soliciting applicants to apply for a job, and does not include specific qualifications applicants must possess in order to be placed. Communication sent from a union confirming a worker’s placement on a project, would also likely not meet the definition of job posting. Additionally, verbal conversations with workers do not constitute a job posting.”

AGC appreciates L&I’s willingness to listen to and address AGC’s concerns.

More on wage posting from L&I:

A new state law taking effect Jan. 1 requires employers to include specific wage or salary details and a description of benefits when they post a job opportunity. To make sure businesses know exactly what’s required, the Washington State Department of Labor & Industries (L&I) is rolling out detailed information and examples, and has published a new policy to help employers meet the new standard.

The administrative policy connected with Senate Bill 5761, adopted in 2022, provides examples of what pay information employers must include, and explains which job postings have to meet the new requirements.

“Pay transparency is important to eliminating gender-based pay discrepancies,” said Celeste Monahan, assistant director for Fraud Prevention and Labor Standards. “This policy offers employers important guidance examples so they can meet these requirements.”

“We’ve developed real-life examples so employers and workers know exactly what to expect,” said Bryan Templeton, Employment Standards program manager. “We’re here to help employers meet the requirements and to ensure job-seekers know exactly what they’re getting into before they apply.”

Webinars provide more information

To provide further information about the requirements, L&I’s Employment Standards program is holding free webinars. Employers can sign up for a session on the agency’s Workshops and Training Center web page. The webinar schedule is:

  • Dec. 21 at 2:00 p.m.
  • Dec. 22 at 9:00 a.m.
  • Jan. 12 at 9:00 a.m.
  • Feb. 9 at 2:00 p.m.

Webinar topics include: What constitutes a job posting, what information must be included in a job posting, what constitutes a wage scale or salary range as well as benefits and other compensation. Participants will also learn about free consultations the program offers employers.

The job posting requirements are part of the state’s gender discrimination law. The act prohibits pay discrimination based on gender and promotes fairness among workers by addressing business practices that contribute to income disparities. Employees and job applicants have rights under this law.

The policy also provides guidance on the department’s existing interpretations of the act.

For more information, contact AGC Chief Lobbyist Jerry VanderWood.

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