During the interview process, what if they don’t offer quite as much money as you’d like? Is there a way to ask for a higher salary without alienating the employer? Absolutely!!
It’s normal to feel nervous. But we can teach you effective negotiating skills that will help you get what you want, need, and deserve in terms of compensation. Here are our 5 tips for negotiating salary:
1. Understand Benchmarking
You don’t want to waste your valuable time on a company that is never going to pay you what you’re worth. We will help you understand how employers decide their salary levels and adjust your job search accordingly. Companies use a variety of benchmarking tools including 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
Most employers who are interested in great talent will be in the upper quartile of their market when it comes to pay. However, employers have also figured out that paying significantly more than their competitors actually doesn’t motivate employees to stay over the long term. So, don’t expect to be able to negotiate for significantly higher pay than the norm – no matter how qualified you are.
2. Wait for It…
There’s an old saying “The first person to bring up money, loses.” Starting a discussion about salary prematurely may make a potential employer think that you only care about money and prioritizing being a good fit for the company’s culture. Also, if a recruiter brings up money right away, we recommend smoothly changing the subject so that so you can demonstrate your qualifications before talking about money.
3. Negotiate Performance Pay
An employer who really wants to hire you but has limited resources may offer a lowball figure with the excuse “This is all we can afford right now”. If you want the job, ask if they would be willing to offer 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.” Be sure to get any incentive pay agreements in writing during the hiring stage so that your employer is committed to following through.
4. Don’t Just Talk Cash
Any salary discussions should be about your total compensation including benefits. If the recruiter isn’t familiar with the benefits package that is being offered, you might ask to talk with their benefits specialist. Remember, negotiating for non-cash perks might bridge the gap between your asking price and the employer’s offer.
5. Walk through It in Training
One of the best ways to prepare is by practicing. We can prep you by role playing an entire interview including the salary negotiation phase. This process gives you the confidence to talk compensation with a potential employer without being afraid you are getting it “wrong”.