Q: My employer has asked that we create a Non-Disclosure Agreement for employees to sign regarding discussion of their salaries. Can this be done legally?
A: No, this cannot be done legally. Under Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA), employees have the right to discuss the terms and conditions of their employment, including their work hours, work conditions, pay, and managers.
The National Labor Relations Board has taken an aggressive approach to this issue, suing employers over the last few years for infringing upon these rights, so you’ll want to avoid putting any language conflicting with the NLRA into company documents. Besides, NDAs are more appropriately used for proprietary and trade secret company information, not for keeping employee salaries confidential.
The best defense against employees discussing or griping about their salaries is to have a working environment where everyone feels valued and that they are treated fairly.
Like an expensive car or designer clothing, being an “exempt” employee carries a certain amount of status. Learn more about "salaried" status as a "status" and what it could mean for your workplace morale.