Salary negotiation is something that many don't think about seriously enough during their job search process. Instead, we put more emphasis on the preparation for the interview and making sure that we sell ourselves well enough to be that perfect candidate. Even when getting the offer should be cause for celebration, many might assume negotiating for more pay is taboo. However, there are some tough questions that you need to ask yourself. Are you satisfied with the job offer? What if it is not what you hoped for? What will you do? How will you persuade them to give you more? How will you negotiate for what you want? Here are some skills that might just help you get what you want.
Do Your Research
Make sure that you do research to better prepare yourself for salary negotiations. It is always beneficial to have an understanding and benchmark of the average salaries of your peers in your field with comparable experience. You should also take some time to familiarize yourself with details about the company's benefits or compensation plan (e.g., health insurance, life insurance, retirement matching, etc.) Not performing adequate research puts you at a disadvantage and can lead to the acceptance of a low starting salary.
At the end of the day, it's about the bottom line. A company hires a new employee with the expectation that doing so will increase revenues more than expenses. During the interview, sell yourself to your new employer what specifically you bring to the company and how you will help improve productivity, and profitability.
Wait Until An Offer Is Made
It's not uncommon for a company to discuss your salary requirements before the actual offer and in the stage where an offer has been made, you will be in the best position to negotiate your salary. The first salary offer a company makes may not be their best offer. However, it is not a good idea to ask for a better offer after accepting an initial one.
Request A Salary Slightly Higher Than What You Want
During salary negotiations, request a salary slightly higher than what you want, so if the company hiring you counters, it will be close to the dollar amount you're seeking. Also, once you've requested a specific dollar figure, don't change it. If you do, you'll lose credibility and quite possibly the job.
Make sure you're set on working for a company before you enter into salary negotiations. Do not participate in salary negotiations if you plan on refusing whatever the company offers. In the event that more than one company wants to hire you, never attempt to get the companies to bid against each other. That’s very unprofessional and you risk losing the job offers as well as your credibility.
Sometimes, you might be in a situation where starting salaries are non-negotiable. If this is the case and you really want the job offer, don’t be overbearing or pushy, but do be open to accepting offer alternatives like extra days of leave or in some cases, company shares might be offered as alternatives.
Be Prepared To Stop Negotiating
Sometimes it's best just not to negotiate. You must be prepared to stop negotiating if it is not going in the direction that you wanted and you can't afford to lose the job. Many people are not in a situation to negotiate because they do not currently have a job or other offers. If you must accept the job, do not make ultimatums or leave the negotiating table. You'll always be in a strong negotiating position if you are currently employed or have other job offers on the table.