Block cut numbers spell out 2023
How to take advantage of 2023 employee changes

Disclaimer – The information provided in this article does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice; instead, all information, content, and materials available in this article are for general informational purposes only.

In 2023, many workers will be receiving a pay increase and will have more leverage in salary negotiations thanks in part to new California labor laws that took effect January 1. Let’s dig into a few of these new laws and explore what it may mean for you and how to best navigate the new terrain.

Minimum Wage Increases by Fifty Cents

Exactly 26 states have declared minimum wage increases for 2023 and California was among them. The new hourly rate is $15.50 even for tipped workers. An “employer may not use an employee’s tips as a credit toward its obligation to pay the minimum wage per hour” the DIRclarifies “and cannot be waived by any agreement” clarifies the State of California Department of Industrial Relations.

How to Apply the Law to Your Advantage

But remember, in this tight labor market where there is a shortage of workers, don’t be afraid to ask for pay above the minimum wage. Many employers in the restaurant and hospitality industry specifically are desperate for workers and are advertising pay significantly above the California minimum.

Minimum Salary Increases to $64,480

A surprise to many, California law requires overtime-exempt employees to be paid a salary a minimum of two-times the state minimum wage. This means these workers will see a pay bump in 2023 as required by the law.

Of course, you’ll want to make sure you’re an overtime-exempt employee before you expect a pay increase. For one, you could simply ask your HR or payroll department. But as they say, “trust, but verify.” You can access an insightful guide to see where you stack up for exempt status via SHRM, the Society for Human Resource Management. 

How to Apply the Law to Your Advantage

If you’re paid this salary, you’re making the bare minimum required by the law. You may want to ask yourself if this aligns with your skillsets and what you have to offer. If not, you may consider approaching your employer about a pay increase or bonus for top performance.

California Pay Transparency Law

On January 1, all employers with 15 or more workers must include the pay range for all job openings. On top of this, employees must now receive the pay range for their own position upon request.

How to Apply the Law to Your Advantage

Access to positions pay ranges is extremely valuable in negotiating your current or future payments. Shop around and see what the going pay range is for similar positions to make sure you’re not being low-balled. And if you’re pay range is lower than the typical pay for similar positions, you may consider seeking a new job or talking with your employer about why theres a discrepancy and what it would take to increase your pay.

About the Author | Thomas Guzowski has a Bachelor of Fine Arts and is currently pursuing his Masters in Science and Organizational Leadership. He has spent over a decade working in the nonprofit social service sector, including as an AmeriCorps VISTA member and for the Cesar Chavez Foundation. Guzowski has numerous articles published on the topic of professional development.

By Thomas Guzowski
Thomas Guzowski Assistant Director of Marketing