You’ve finally got a verbal confirmation for a job after weeks of extensive interviews.
And not long after, you’ve received your official offer letter via email. However, you’re not so over the moon with the proposed compensation.
Coming up with a counter-offer is daunting, especially when a potential job is on the line. Here are five timeless tips to help ensure that salary negotiation is always in your best favor.
Understand and define what you have to offer
The foundation of every negotiation is an offer. And when it comes to salary discussions, job seekers need to have a good grasp on what they professionally have of value to an employer.
Many factors influence compensation:
Years of experience
Types of experience
Licenses and certifications
Before beginning any salary negotiations, candidates should understand each factor above as it relates to their professional standing concerning a coveted role. Having clarity around these areas will help navigate and support your stance in salary talks.
Conduct research on your current job market
To effectively negotiate your salary, job seekers need to be well-informed about their current job market. Knowing data surrounding the market average helps provide a basis and justification for your salary proposal.
Questions to consider:
What is the national average salary for the position?
What is the local average salary for the role?
What is the average pay by industry?
Are there any recorded salaries online for the job?
Candidates should also note that job market data will vary by years of experience. An easy way to help conduct market research on your salary options is by using a salary calculator. Job seekers can visit Indeed and Glassdoor to get a custom pay range based on their unique location, experience and industry.
Set your minimum desired salary and ask for the top of the range
Before going into salary talks, you should have an idea of your desired salary. And with that, you should set in stone a minimum number for what you would accept.
Preparing this number will help ensure that you’re satisfied with the result of salary negotiations and that you remain steadfast on what you desire for yourself.
Sometimes, employers might even ask you for your desired pay. Having a range already in mind will help frame your conversation somewhere within your confines.
It is also imperative to ask for the top of your range in the event that you have to work down to a mutually agreed upon number during talks. Always start high, then go low during negotiations.
Salary offers don’t always come wrapped in a perfect bow. That’s why you must be flexible during the negotiations.
An employer might not be able to grant the request you want, but they may be able to present other things that also have significant value.
Things you might want to consider negotiating outside salary:
Paid Time Off
Before your salary chat, consider what alternatives to salary are just as important to you. From there, you can navigate conversations if an employer can’t meet your salary offer.
Prepare and practice your talking points
Your salary request is baseless without talking points.
When negotiating your salary, it will always be in your best interest to drive the conversation. And to do that, you need to be armed with points of discussion.
These points will be rooted in what you bring to the table and the market research you conduct around your desired role. This is where you will advocate for your skill level, background, unique qualities, years of experience and professional achievements. Your talking points will essentially answer: Why do I deserve this proposed salary?
Before talking to an employer, you should have your talking points nailed down. It’s always a good idea to practice them with a friend so you can adequately prepare for the discussion ahead and potential rebuttals that might come your way.
The more you prepare and practice, the more comfortable and confident you will be when it’s officially go-time to negotiate.