Salary Negotiation Tips (How to Get a Better Offer)

Want to negotiate a better salary offer from your current employer? This is how.

Salary Negotiation Tips (How to Get a Better Offer)

While conversations about salary still take place between less financially well-off people, the average salary is now close to US$53,970 per year according to the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE). In today’s job market, every dollar you make is of increasing value to your potential employer, so it’s important to weigh the best possible offers you have to offer when negotiating your salary. You’ll also want to be mindful of additional compensation options if you’re an academic or professor, which may include merit raises, tuition assistance, sabbaticals, and career development plans.

Equally important, you must act fast in order to increase your bottom line. PayScale reveals that you’ll likely have to be proactive by scheduling interviews with employers a month or two before your first scheduled vacation, even if your vacation is on a previously-planned weekend. This isn’t necessarily a conversation killer; after all, the most important factor in an interview is a candidate’s enthusiasm and attitude, but if your cool demeanor could potentially sink your chances at the job offer, the end result may not be what you’d hoped for.

Your salary negotiation skills are a matter of negotiating your worth while being in the knowledge of the compensation guidelines your employer’s requirements. In other words, if you get several offers in a row, this is where it’s important to compare the offers. Use PayScale’s Salary Negotiation Calculator to monitor your offer, the compensation guidelines of each of your employers, and the wages of industry and comparable positions.

Know Your Worth

An employer’s salary guide is more than just a guideline. It’s a snapshot of what your qualifications warrant for the position you want to fill. Be prepared with a list of those qualifications and be specific with the information you provide them. This can help you be more effective when negotiating to offer you an appropriate salary.

For example, to make the best offers, you can also consider the minimum wage for similar jobs. Then, determine how long the job will be held in the industry and other factors that the employer has, such as hiring guidelines, salary range, or benefits, all of which may be deemed important when deciding how much to offer you for the job.

Be Flexible

Don’t act as though you’re “locked in” to a job offer that can’t be negotiated. A flexible offer can help in making the deal happen while also giving you an opportunity to explore other opportunities that may be much better for you as an employee. Because employers will want to retain skilled and competent people, if your salary is well below the marketplace and offers aren’t out there, your employer may be better served to reconsider.

Request a Performance Update

You may very well not be aware that many companies will ask for feedback from you in some cases, and this feedback can be very beneficial when it comes to negotiating your salary. The feedback is most beneficial when you have good communication with your employers, as this will ensure they know your hopes for your future career and also how you can contribute to the success of the company. The downside is that you’re more likely to get an unsolicited “thanks for your feedback” response; however, it can’t hurt to seek feedback because it can help you to position yourself to make the best job offer available, thus offsetting the need to negotiate further if you received a bad-faith reply.

Propose a Choice

There are instances when the employer will want you to pay half the salary before you give your salary offer, and as a result, this may not require a negotiation. Offer to pay half, and the employer will pass on the other half. Also, offer to start at the employee’s salary and promise to work as hard as you can to move up the compensation ladder for full pay. This shows that you’re committed to their organization, and the employer will love you for it. The bottom line is that the more comfortable and competitive you are in the job market, the better a job offer will be, especially if you negotiate a higher compensation or deferred-payment plan as your salary.

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