tips for negotiating salary

Do you know how much you are really worth in today’s market?  If you interviewed today, would you feel confident in negotiating your salary? Many job seekers look to us for guidance when negotiating their salaries. To be a successful negotiator, knowledge is key!

Consider these 3 tips when negotiating your salary and compensation:

Tip #1:  Talk to your recruiter!  We are here to assist you in all stages of your job search–from resume submission to offer acceptance!  Your recruiter is your cheerleader, consultant, and trusted adviser.  She will know, from the outset, whether your salary expectations are in line for the job.  In addition, your recruiter serves as a buffer between you and the employer.  Given the opportunity, we will negotiate on your behalf to ensure that a fair deal is reached for all involved.

Tip #2:  Do not discuss salary expectations early in the process.  At the start, keep your discussions centered around the opportunity at hand.  Again, your recruiter will know whether your expectations are “in the ballpark”, so you needn’t worry that there will be a big discrepancy.  Focus, instead, on whether the opportunity is right for you and on putting your best foot forward.

Tip #3:  Keep your expectations in line with the current market.  Over the past year, after negotiations, we’ve seen candidates receive an average increase in salary of  10-12%  when changing jobs.  However, consider the economy.  Take advantage of a strong economy and, likewise, be more conservative in a weaker economy.

When you are offered a position, always be respectful to the employer and express that you are flattered and appreciate the offer. Even if you decline the offer, you never know whether the opportunity may come back around.

Salary Resources

In any event, when looking for a new opportunity, gather as much data as possible.  Use online tools, talk to  other professionals in your network, and  reach out to professional organizations to get a general idea of what the market is paying for your position.

Here, we’ve compiled a list of a few tools to get you started with your salary research:

  • National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) Salary Calculator:  This calculator takes into account your level of education, college institution, and field of study, along with the job title, industry, and region to provide median salaries for similar employees.
  • Salary Wizard:  This salary wizard lets you use job descriptions to compare US and Canadian Salaries. Enter details such as your location, education level, years of experience, etc. to find an appropriate salary range.
  • PayScale Salary Survey:  Use PayScale’s Salary Survey to generate your personal salary snapshot.  The report will tell you how your current compensation compares to others in your industry. Depending on your industry, you may also look to professional organizations to get information about current salaries.