Congratulations. All the hard work you have put in through the job seeking process has finally paid off and you’ve just received a job offer. However before you breathe a sigh of relief that your future is secure there’s one final step of the process left to go through, the salary negotiation.
When you are offered a job it is very important that you negotiate your salary. Many job seekers, feel uncomfortable negotiating or don’t understand the process. Remember, even if salary negotiation a makes you feel uncomfortable in the short term, not doing it is a long-term mistake.
If you accept a starting salary lower than you are happy with it will lead to you feeling demoralised in the long term. When starting a new job the last thing you want from a positive hiring process is resentment and regret later on.
How Do You Go About Salary Negotiation?
First of all you should avoid talking about your salary expectations, if possible, until you have received a formal job offer. Doing so earlier can leave you with less room for negotiation further down the line. Unfortunately this can be difficult as recruiters will often push you to reveal your salary expectations early on and potential employers may do the same in the preliminary interview rounds.
The best time to begin salary negotiation is once you are the last candidate standing and the employer has made you a formal job offer. For successful salary negotiation, you should already have a figure in mind that you wish to receive. Your target salary should be based on the value you can provide to the company, rather than what feel you want or need, to earn. Research online what the average salary is for the position you are applying for, in your geographical location. Also look on job websites and see how much jobs for people with your skills, experience and qualifications are being advertised for. This should help you to define a target salary to negotiate for, which is both realistic in the employer’s eyes and acceptable to you.
When you receive the job offer you don’t have to accept straight away. Consider the base salary, including the benefits package (if applicable) you have been offered and compare it to your target salary. Salary negotiation is always more effective and favourable than starting the whole job seeking process off again, so if the salary offered is too low, negotiate with the employer. Use the information obtained in your research about average salaries and your value to help you make your case. Remember that salary negotiation means negotiating other benefits in your package such as health insurance and/or a pension plan as well as your base salary.
If after engaging in salary negotiation you are pleased with the offer you get, ask for it in writing. This will ensure your employer’s legitimacy and that there can be no backtracking on their part. If despite your efforts at salary negotiation you didn’t get what you wanted, don’t take it personally. In some cases it may have been an issue of budget allocation. Don’t accept a job offer if you’re not comfortable with the salary as this may result in you looking for a new job in a much shorter time period. As long as you’re being realistic about what you’re worth, you could find the salary you desire with another organisation.
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