Your preparation for salary negotiation starts before you go in for an interview.
Step 1: Evaluate your level of skills, experience and accomplishments. Are you a good match for the job or are you a great match?
Step 2: Know your industry. What is the going wage range for the position in today’s job market? And yes I said range. There are multiple factors that contribute to a wage determination. Skills, experience, accomplishments and locale among others all contribute. You must have an idea of what a realistic wage expectation is in the current job market in your location.
Understand that the wages vary significant from one geographic location to another. Just because you made $20/hr as an admin back home doesn’t mean that you will make that rate in your new city. Could be more, could be less. Know your industry. There are multiple online sources that can give you some general ideas such as salary.com and onetonline.org if you are unsure.
Step 3: Now that you have an idea of what the going wage range is, was is an acceptable wage range for you? Once again, I said range. During the interview process, you never bring up money. Always wait for the interviewer to broach the subject. Sometimes interviewers will push for you to give your salary requirements.
Try not to give a specific number, give a range. Just remember, the low end of the range must be a number you can live with. What is your bottom line? What is your walk away number? What is the wage that would make you pass on an offer?
Step 4: You have received an offer. Now what? Is the offer what you expected? What would be a reasonable counter offer? Now is the time for you to respectfully make your counter. This is not a confrontation, this is a negotiation.
What if you are okay with the wage rate, what about the benefits package? It is all about wiggle room. If during the interview, the wage limitations were clearly designated, there may be no wiggle, but you may want to ask anyway, or request that you be eligible for a wage increase after a specified period of time based on performance. The answer may be yes or no but you won’t know if you don’t try and you don’t get, if you don’t negotiate.
Copyright 2017 Teri Maher