Once you’ve received an offer from a company, the next most important step is making sure you get the salary you desire. The hardest part of negotiating your salary, is simply getting the courage to ask. You can’t get what you want unless you ask.
There are a few different ways of going about negotiating salary. Regardless, always do your research before you start the conversation. Look at reviews of the company and if there are any listed salaries for the position you applied for. There is information available online that will help you know the range of salary for your position. Still take it with a grain of salt, for there are a variety of factors that impact salary, work-from-home privileges, extensive paid time off (PTO), generous benefits, and all other perks that impact salary or might be a tradeoff.
With a job offer, the company or recruiters may ask what your current salary is. You shouldn’t lie about what you are making currently, but move the conversation to what you’re looking for and explain the skills you have obtained and why you are looking for an increase in salary.
After you’re given the offer, but before beginning to discuss the salary, ask as many questions as you can to fully understand the benefits of the job. For example, ask about base salary, PTO, 401(k) match, profit sharing, frequency of reviews, and more. This will help put the hiring manager at ease, but also provide you with more information you need to discuss salary.
Don’t be afraid to ask for more time. If there is a mutual agreement on a deadline, there shouldn’t be any reason why an offer would be rescinded. Getting an offer is extremely exciting, but don’t let your emotions get the best of you. It is normal to feel that instinctive urge to say yes immediately. But thinking about the offer reasonably and when you have all the facts is best.
There can sometimes be negative connotations when giving a range for salary. Some employers think when you provide a range, this will make you less likely to stand your ground. If you feel more comfortable providing a range, the low end of the range should be the salary you want. For example, if you want $50k, you should say you are looking for $50k-$55k, or something of that nature. You are more likely to get the salary closer to what you want.
Many employers are willing to negotiate salary, but employees or future employees simply never ask. You may not get the exact number you are looking for, but there is a good chance that you will get a higher offer than the initial one. Stick your ground when negotiating. Be kind, but confident. If a company wants you and your talents on the team, they will do all they can to provide you with what you need.
Always remember that the worst thing that can happen is that the company says no, but you will never know if you don’t simply ask!
Laura Nelson, LEED GA – Business Analyst