10 Salary Negotiation Tips to Use On the Way In

Interviewing for a new job? This is the best time to get a bump in pay! Follow these salary negotiation tips to get the appropriate compensation for your skills and experience.

Transitioning to a new role in a new organization creates a critical opportunity to get your compensation set at the appropriate level.

In my many years of recruitment and internal HR experience it has astounded me the different pay levels that individuals negotiate coming into an organization. What explains the variations? Often it is simply based on the fact that one person asked for more, and was prepared to “back themselves more” in the recruitment process. An HR Manager that I knew had the philosophy: “Why would I pay more than a candidate asks for? It just doesn’t make business sense.” It is often women who negotiate the worst deals for themselves or simply fail to negotiate at all. Below is a summary of some key salary negotiation tips I learned during my ten years of consulting with organizations about reward and recognition.

What you need to know

Salary Negotiation Tips

A recent true story

I recently coached a candidate who had received a job offer about how to ask whether the organization could improve their compensation. Taking my advice her conversation with the company’s internal Human Resources person went a little like this:

Candidate:
“Thanks very much for the contract which I received in the mail today. I’m really looking forward to starting with you and just have a couple of questions first. One relates to the compensation. The offer was lower than I had expected. My understanding of the market range for these roles based on review of market compensation surveys is that they are $90,000 to $110,000. This offer at $85,000 is below this range. Is there anything more that can be done in terms of the compensation offer?”

Human Resources consultant:
“In setting the rate for the offer we take account of our understanding of the external market but also internal relativities of what current employees in similar roles are paid. Ultimately I do not have decision-making authority about the pay offer and instead advise the line manager about this. Leave it with me and I will see if there is anything more we can do”.

With two hours, the HR person came back with an offer more than 10% higher. At no point did the candidate say she would not accept the original offer. If the employer had been unwilling to move, the candidate could have said, “Let me consider the offer and I will get back to you by the end of the week.” The ball would still have been in her court. In this instance, a five-minute phone call gained the candidate $10,000 more in compensation this year, next year and the year after. Certainly worth the effort! Remember – when it comes to salary negotiations - you won’t get if you don’t ask!

Related Articles:
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Salary Negotiation Strategies
When There Are No Raises, What Else Can You Negotiate?