Due to the high competition on the job market, job seekers can consider themselves lucky if they get to land an interview and even luckier if they actually get a job. The moment you got a job, our advice is to negotiate the terms of the offer with your employer. The secret of negotiation (be it for your job, be it for your salary) is knowing when to stop. So… do your homework!
Negotiation is an art, which requires a lot of practice
First, have a short evaluation of your negotiation skills. Do you feel comfortable negotiating with a car salesman on the price of the car you want to buy? What was the rate of success in your previous salary negotiations? If you have had a lot of negotiation successes in the past, it is possible that you still have these skills. So use them.
Know when to stop
Negotiation is not all about winning at any price, it is also about coming to an understanding regarding the terms and conditions of a job offer in such a way that you are satisfied.
For starters, establish what is the minimal salary and benefits which can correspond to your necessities. No matter what your objectives are – three vacation weeks instead of only two, the possibility of traveling or advancement opportunities – all should have priority in your negotiation process.
When negotiating, don’t just think about the salary. When possible, negotiate other types of benefits as well. For example, the possibility of benefiting from professional training courses, a more flexible program or a shorter work hours during summer.
Don’t get greedy
Stop when you’re on top! If you continue negotiating just because you like arguing, even if you got an excellent offer, you’ll risk losing. The employer might as well end all negotiation and give you their final offer, without the possibility of other discussion. You risk pushing your prospective employer away from you or even worse, losing the respective position.
How to negotiate higher salary
Even if “money isn’t everything”, the preparation for a discussion and negotiation of the salary is an important step whenever you apply for a certain job. Here are 6 steps to help you ensure you get higher beginner’s salary inside a company:
Know how much you worth
Know your value! The key to any successful negotiation is information, so find out how much you value on the job market. Do a little research in the field and find out what the range of salary is for the job you want. Once you know the base salary, take into consideration your skills and abilities,your education and experience as well as any other qualities you may possess and are more than useful to the new position, in order for the employer to estimate your beginning range of salary.
Postpone salary discussion for as long as possible
If you ask for a specific amount too early, you either risk to be disqualified – if the amount is too large – or to be considered under qualified for the job – if the salary you ask for is too little. And even if you won’t get into such a situation, your chances of negotiating for a higher salary will be decreased.
Supposing you are being asked to specify the amount you want the moment when you apply for the job, you can say that you are flexible, or that you want to earn the “right price on the market”, or that you want to have a competitive salary with a person working on the same position.
If they refuse to schedule an interview if you don’t specify the amount you’re asking for in the application, you might as well ask them what the medium salary for that position is in their company. Also, tell them that your salary request depends on multiple factors, among which are the benefits offered by the company,commissions, sales profit, promotion opportunities, training. After this, tell them a range of salary you’d like to have. Never mention a specific amount (I want $7,657/month); make it a range (between $5-6K/month).
Don’t lie about your current salary range
Fearing the range of salary they have at their current work place (or previous) might influence in a negative way the decision of the prospective employer, some job seekers tend to lie about the amount of money they used to earn and place a higher sum.
Nowadays, companies are able to research and find out what the real amount a person got at a moment in time. Thus, it’s not a big surprise if a candidate is rejected for declaring false information in their resume, cover letters or application.
If you really don’t want them to know your previous salary range, you can try to refuse mentioning it until you have the chance to prove you deserve to earn a lot more.
Never accept an offer on the spot
No matter how good an offer might sound (or how desperate your situation is), never sign or accept it until you have analyzed it carefully. The moment you get the offer, kindly thank the interviewer/employer for giving you this opportunity, reassure him of your continuing interest and ask him for a short period of time to analyze his offer.
Find out what the promotion opportunities are in the company and the ways in which your performance and salary range would be evaluated. Before accepting the offer, make sure you have analyzed well the entire compensation package, including benefits, life and/or health insurance, days off, training opportunities, material advantages (car, personal phone etc) and so on.
Don’t be afraid of asking for more
As long as you do it in a polite and diplomatic way, there’s nothing wrong with asking for more. You should ask for a salary package which better suits your necessities. In some cases, the manager could raise the offer with almost 10-20%, when the candidate proves to be an exceptional choice. If the company shows rigid upon the salary negotiation, there is the possibility that they are more flexible with the other benefits or with the days off. Studies have revealed that the majority of employers are flexible to at least some of the aspects of the compensation package. So try to make the most of their offer!
Know your limits
During the job offer and salary negotiation session, most of the times, employers either accept some of the job seeker’s terms, or refuse the entire negotiation process. If the employer ceased accepting some of your terms or if he refuses making any other concession, it is better if you finished negotiating. Be aware that it is not advisable to lose the employer’s good will just by needlessly continuing the salary negotiation!
The following list of salary negotiation dos and don’ts will help you prepare and conduct a more successful negotiation for a better compensation package during your job interviewing process.
- Be sure you have made the necessary research to estimate how much you are going expect from the position you are about to apply for.
- Be aware of your strengths and your achievements. And make sure your employer is aware of them as well. Let him know the value of your work and how this could bring his company in advantage.
- Let the recruiter make the first step in offering you an amount. Also state how much you expect from a salary at the new job’s level.
- If you don’t succeed in getting the amount you asked for, try to obtain other facilities like a shorter probation period, a higher placed position in the company, a better office or other benefits like holidays, compensations etc.
- Make sure you receive a written salary offer.
- Do not bring into discussion the salary issue before the employer does. Postpone discussing about your salary as long as possible, at least until you are sure about the amount you are entitled to gain.
- Do not overestimate the salary you are currently having just to make sure you’ll get more from the prospective job.
- Do not feel obliged to accept the first offer. Negotiate if you feel the offer doesn’t suit your expectations or requirements.
- Do not get aggressive in the salary negotiation process.
- Do not focus only on the salary offer. Pay attention to the entire salary package.
- Do not let yourself get caught in the negotiation as if in a game of who’s more proud.
- Do not accept the first convenient salary offer if you are not sure about the nature of the job or of the company.