Your interview has progressed to the salary negotiation stage, and now it’s time to start conveying what you want from the position. But where do you start and how do you negotiate a higher salary offer – or conditions – without coming across as either forthright or arrogant?
Here are seven of our best tips to help you confidently negotiate your salary on your terms.
Know your value
To know your value, you need to research what the industry standard is for your role, and if possible, what other companies are paying someone in your position. Don’t just go off your current wage, as this may not be an accurate representation of what is to be expected. Seek and other job sites can be a good source of information as well as publications like the Robert Half Salary Guide. Ask us for a copy, we’ll be happy to point you in the right direction.
This is the most crucial step in negotiating a higher salary offer. Know the marketplace you are playing in. Being unprepared can result in you earning well below your worth.
Know your number
Based on the research you have done in the previous step, what is the lowest salary you would be willing to take? This will help you establish clear boundaries on what you will accept and won’t accept. It will also help you evaluate clearly when benefits, bonuses or incentives and other perks are presented to “sweeten the deal”. We call this your ‘floor’ or ‘walkaway’.
Hold control of the conversation
It’s not uncommon in the interview process for interviewers to either ask you what your expectations are, or what your previous salary package was. In these moments, you need to answer honestly, but direct the conversation away quickly and explain your understanding of the market and the package you are looking for now.
You have progressed to this point because your potential new employer has seen the value in having you as a member of their team. Be sure to re-iterate what your skills, responsibilities, market value and personal growth are.
Talk about some of your greatest achievements and how you can quickly add value to the organisation. Confidence and belief in your abilities are crucial through the negotiation process. Just be mindful that confidence doesn’t turn into arrogance.
Leave room for negotiation
If you have been required to put forward a salary offer (which may not the ideal spot to be in), then consider pitching your salary range higher than what you are hoping to get – but not so high it will price you out of the market. An employer can always negotiate down, but you will never be able to increase the offer once it’s said and agreed.
Be prepared to say no
If your potential new employer is not open to negotiation or is not willing to hit the number you have set as your limit, then you need to be prepared to say no and walk away. It can be difficult, particularly when you needa new job. But you set this number for a reason and walking away will prevent you from wasting your time – and theirs – any longer.
Always be professional
Regardless of how the negotiation ends, always make sure you conduct yourself politely and professionally. If this negotiation doesn’t go your way, it doesn’t mean that there won’t be future opportunities within the organisation or beneficial connections that you can gain through this process.
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