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Salary Negotiation

April 19, 2017

Negotiating the salary can be a dramatic event. You want to get the maximum compensation for your work while your employer wants to reduce the expenses. How to find a compromise?

  1. Determine Your Value on the Job Market. It’s crucial to know your value on the job market. Most probably if you have worked for the same employer for five or more years, you are underpaid. Chances are that you have gained new skills and your market value has increased over the years. How to know what you’re worth? Surf the web to find out how well your occupation is currently valued according to the market requirements. Study the advertised positions that you would like to apply for and make some inquiries about the range of salary. Salary.com is a great resource to perform this kind of search. The coolest thing about it that you can get a quick look at the conditions of the market for free. More detailed information is available for a reasonable fee.
  2. Performing the Salary Negotiation. Understand some basic things:
  • Your current compensation will be used as a starting point. Don’t inflate it.  
  • Most probably employers will offer you basic salary and bonuses.
  • Be realistic. Don’t ask for a 200% increase in salary. 20-30% is an adequate raise in relation to your current compensation.  
  • Make the employer talk first and make the offer. 
  1. Understanding the Perks. Sometimes companies are offering lesser salaries but impressive benefits packages. You should understand the perks that your company is offering. It is quite possible that the offered benefits and lower salary will be better than just having a high salary.  
  1. Bonus Considerations. Employers often prefer to play games when it comes to bonuses. For instance, they may say that you can have a 50% bonus, while in reality, they haven’t paid more than 10% to anyone for the last three years. You should understand very clearly how all bonuses are calculated. Asking the people who work for the company about their bonuses is also a good idea.  
  1. Timely payouts. When negotiating your salary, find out when your employer plans to make the first payment. Employer should guarantee a timely payout of both salary and bonuses.
  1. Time Off Policy. Another important thing is a time-off policy. Not everyone is able to offer four weeks of personal days and vacation. And maybe, you need even more than that. It any case, it should be negotiated. In case you have negotiated special conditions with a HR manager, it is highly advisable to have it documented. If a human resources manager goes away or quits, you will have a written proof of your agreement.

When you have negotiated your financial compensation with your new employer successfully and have all the details in written form, you need to think about the best way to resign from your current employer. If you’ve proved to be a great employee, a resignation attempt may result in a counter offer. Be ready for the final talk with your current employer before you can embrace your new career opportunity.

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