Entry-level job

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An entry-level job is the lowest rung on the ladder of economic success. In the corporate world, it's referred to as working your way up from the mail room. Employees in a particular industry generally follow an career path of upward mobility, starting out with easy low-paying jobs and gradually increasing their income as their skills become increasingly valuable to employers.

In some industries, union contracts mandate a graduated series of wage increases, with new employees starting at the lowest level. Teachers in big cities often start at $24,000 a year, which is increased in stages to $96,000 a year after 25 or 30 years.

Political views

Liberals prefer not to present entry-level jobs as the first rung on the ladder but as permanent positions. On this basis, they advocate government intervention to force employers to pay inflated wages for these jobs; see living wage.

Conservatives dismiss the liberal view as sheer nonsense, because the overwhelming majority of the workforce get better and better jobs as their level of skill and experience go up.