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How to get the salary you deserve

Published: Friday 17th April 2015

You’ve answered all the questions really well but now comes what is often the trickiest part of a job interview – salary negotiations. When the interviewer asks what salary you’re expecting, what do you say? Pitch it too high and you risk losing the job, too low and you’ll leave feeling you may have undersold yourself. Often, if the salary is stated in the job advert, this can be considered a starting point and there will be room for negotiation. But it’s a delicate subject to tackle. Here at Zoek, we’ve got some handy pointers to help you get the salary you deserve.

Do your research

You may have a general idea of what the going rate is for a particular job but it’s really worth the time researching both the market and the specific company you are applying to. If you can, pick the brains of friends or colleagues. They probably won’t want to divulge their own pay rate but may offer some guidelines. And your preconceptions could be way off the mark!

Know what you’re worth

If you have the qualifications and the necessary experience then be confident about how much you should be getting paid. If you don’t have much experience yet then focus on how willing you are to take on extra duties or training so a hirer understands that you’re worth a little extra investment.

Woman stacking up pound coins

Don’t lie

On an application form or during an interview you may be asked what your current salary is. If you exaggerate wildly in the hope of securing a much higher wage, you are likely be found out and your reputation will take a battering. If you believe that you are underpaid in your current job and revealing the figure will lead to you underselling yourself, simply say something along the lines of: “I like my company and I’m currently earning £X but I believe I am underpaid and worth more.” Potential hirers will respect your candour.

Stay quiet

An interviewer may try to find out early on in an interview what they can get away with paying you so tactically avoid answering the question directly for as long as you can with.

Be flexible

Define in your own head what your ‘walkaway point’ is, but be prepared to be flexible over what is offered to you. You may be able to negotiate upwards there and then or over the next few days, but consider other benefits that may be on offer. Is the pension or healthcare scheme particularly generous? What about holidays or flexible working? If you have children, are childcare vouchers part of the package? 

Keep these tips in mind, and hopefully  you’ll find negotiating your new salary is not as difficult as you first thought.

If you decide the time is right to start looking for a new job, why not download the free Zoek App to let your new job find you. The app for smarter, faster recruitment can be downloaded on IOS or Android.

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