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5 Salary Negotiation Tips that Work!

5 Salary Negotiation Tips that Work!

Once you’ve proven yourself well qualified for a job during the interview process, you should face the tough question whether you have a strong desire to work for this company. What would you do if you think the company does not offer quite as much money as you expect ? Here are a few tips you could learn to ask for a higher salary without alienating the employer.

1. Understand benchmarking

You would not like to waste your valuable time on a company that is never intended to pay you what you’re worth. This means that it would be necessary for you to know better about how employers decide their salary levels and adjust your job search accordingly. Companies use the different kinds of benchmarking tools. These include comparing pay rates with:

  • Average pay at other companies in their industry
  • Average pay for professionals with your level of experience and education
  • Average pay for professionals in your field in their area of the country

As for most employers who are interested in great talent, they would be in the upper quartile of their market when coming to pay. But,  employers are also clear that paying significantly more than their competitors in fact doesn’t motivate employees to stay over the long term. Therefore, you should be very careful about negotiating for significantly higher pay than on the normal level, even if you think you are very qualified for the job.

2. Wait for it…

There’s an old saying “The first person to bring up money, loses.” if you begin with a discussion about salary prematurely, it would  send a signal that you don’t place a higher priority on being a good fit for a company’s culture rather than expecting more money. In the same way, if a recruiter brings up money right off the bat, it’s a good idea to smoothly change the subject so you can completely show your qualifications before talking about your salary requirements.

3. Negotiate performance pay

If an employer has a strong intention to hire you, but has limited resources, he might offer a lowball figure with the excuse “This is what we can afford right now”. If you really like the job, you could ask if the company would be open to discussing a performance based bonus. You could start by saying “Let’s talk about specific, measurable results that would improve your bottom line and increase my earnings.” Get any incentive pay agreements in writing during the hiring stage so your employer is committed to following through.

4. Ask more than cash

Any discussion of salary should be targeted on your total compensation. If the recruiter isn’t familiar with the dollar value of the benefits package to be offered by the company, you might ask to talk with their benefits specialist. You should bear it in mind that you should negotiate for non-cash perks that might bridge the gap between your asking price and the employer’s offer.

5. Do some preparatory work

One of the best ways to prepare for salary negotiation is to do some practices. Pick a career coach who can prep you by role playing an entire interview including the salary negotiation phase. This process would build up your confidence to talk money with a potential employer without being afraid you are getting it “wrong”.