5 Salary Negotiation Tips: Expert Advice For Your Next Job Offer

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a job candidate negotiation using 5 salary negotiation tips with an interviewer

The first step in your career advancement is finding a job that matches your goals and aspirations – but when you do, what if it doesn’t meet your salary expectations? Once you get to the stage of negotiating a salary, you can at least breathe a sigh of relief that you have an offer! Negotiating can be one of the most challenging things for job seeker’s and candidates to do, though it’s an important step in the hiring process. If you choose not to negotiate, you could be leaving money and extra benefits on the table. Read on for five salary negotiation tips to help you land the salary you desire and deserve.

5 Salary Negotiation Tips for Success

1. Know the Market

The first salary negotiation tip to consider is securing market knowledge. Being backed by market knowledge allows you to have an educated conversation with the hiring team about where you feel you fall within the market and the salary you feel is most appropriate for what you have to offer.

Salary information for close competitors of the company you’re interviewing with is important information to have to go into any conversation with a hiring manager about salary. Be as educated as possible on average salaries for your geographical area and the level of the position you’re considering.

Research market data by reviewing salary websites and speaking to others in the industry for real, up-to-date information. By working with a recruiter, they can provide you with overarching salary information based on role, experience, industry, and location.

2. Prepare Ahead of Time

Preparedness is as important as having market knowledge. It’s not enough to just go into a conversation about an offer and try to be off-the-cuff with it. Prepare ahead of time so you’re clear on the talking points you want to get across to the hiring manager.

Be sure to gather specific examples of why the company should invest more in you. Just asking for more money without providing data about your skill set and how it sets you apart from other candidates who are in the running isn’t a smart move.

Often, when you’re interviewed for a job, there are responsibilities that you need to have, and then there are responsibilities that are nice to have. If you can provide examples during your interview of how you fit some of those nice-to-have responsibilities—those additional skill sets that the company is looking for—it highlights your value to them and presents a strong case when you say you want a certain salary level. If you need help with this, we’ve got a simple guide on how to give better examples during your interviews.

3. Go in with the Right Attitude

Consider the general attitude you take to the conversation. Don’t go in with a confrontational or ‘my way or the highway’ type of manner. Lead with gratitude—lead with really appreciating the opportunity to join the team.

Also, when you offer an “I’m excited about the opportunity” attitude, it highlights the positive and also opens the table up for a more productive back-and-forth conversation, rather than coming right in and saying, “I need this number.” Going in with that type of attitude and comment sets a little bit more of a negative tone, where you can come off as a bit more confrontational and combative, rather than, “We’re working together to find the best possible solution for both me and you, the hiring manager.”

4. Be Ready to Answer Questions

Go into negotiations ready to answer the types of questions the hiring company might ask you.

Once you present your case, the hiring team might come back at you with a response like, “Okay, I appreciate where you’re coming from. We’re going to take this into consideration. If we come up to the salary that you’re asking for, are you going to accept the position?”

Be prepared for that type of question because, even though sometimes you might have other things you’re considering when you go to a negotiation, it says you’re really serious about the opportunity. If you don’t have an answer for that type of question, then they might come back with, “Okay, so are we your top choice?”

Additional questions you might face include:

  • How quickly can you come on board?
  • Do you have other options on the table?

If you showcase your skills and accomplishments, an employer may ask you for some examples or even a hard-copy representation or proof. Be flexible in meeting these types of requests. During the preparation phase, as you decide what you will share, be sure you have access to anything that can back it up, like reports and presentations, when confidentiality agreements don’t prevent you from sharing them.

5. Be Flexible

Finally, it’s important to be somewhat flexible during the negotiation process. Can you incorporate other components into the total package to make it work?

There are more components to an offer package than just base salary, so if you really find yourself at a sort of standstill with the company around the base salary, are there other areas of compensation that you can talk about? If you’re interviewing with a publicly traded company, is there any flexibility or room to move up from a stock options perspective? Is there an opportunity for a sign-on bonus? Is working an extra week of vacation or additional work-from-home days into the offer possible?

Salary Negotiation Tips & Advice: 4 Mistakes to Avoid

Here are three mistakes that should be avoided.

1. Not preparing enough: A lack of preparation going into a conversation around negotiating a salary is a quick way to not get what you want.

2. Failing to rehearse and practice: It’s good to rehearse the conversation with your recruiter, family member, or friend, similar to how you would practice interview questions for an interview.

3. Being too aggressive: You don’t want to come at the negotiations too aggressively or with a lack of appreciation. Doing so can turn the hiring manager off pretty quickly and lead to a result you don’t want.

4. Not negotiating other benefits: Salary is not the only negotiable benefit in the job offer process. These are eight other negotiable benefits that can bolster your total offer bringing your realized salary closer to or even above your expectations. 

Daley And Associates

Now that you know the top five salary negotiation tips and advice to seal the deal, are you ready to land your next job or grow your career? Daley And Associates works with candidates of all levels to land positions from promising start-ups to Fortune 100 companies. We also work with you to put our salary negotiation tips into practice. Contact us today for more information.

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