It can be intimidating to discuss your salary during the interview process. The more prepared you are, the more likely you are to have a successful negotiation. Below you'll find tips to best formulate an answer when it comes to salary requirements.
Before you come up with a salary range, think about why you are looking for a new job. If you are unhappy with your current pay, take some time to consider how much you'd ideally like to get paid. If you're unsure what the going rate is for the positions you're interviewing for, compare salaries on a number of salary information websites.
There are two common situations where you will be asked about your salary requirements.
Oftentimes, candidates have initial screening interviews with human resources or a recruiter. These can be phone calls or in-person interviews. This is typically where the salary question will be asked.
Be honest with the interviewer. Let them know what you want to get in terms of salary. You can also say that you are willing to entertain a lower offer depending on other aspects of the job. Unless you are looking for a new job just for a new salary, make it very clear that you are flexible.
Be careful not to be too insistent on a specific number before you understand the full scope of the role. There will be time to negotiate once you get closer to an offer. When that time comes, be sure to negotiate over the phone rather than over email.
Your first interaction with a potential employer may be over email. Be careful not to undersell yourself.
Don't give firm number that you aren't willing to budge on. Rather, give a salary range you'd like to land in. Make sure you also say that you are flexible and willing to discuss salary options.
Discussing your salary requirement can be touchy, depending on when you bring it up. Here are a few tips on things to avoid saying when it comes to discussing compensation.
Discussing money can be uncomfortable, so here are some tips to keep in mind when formulating your answer.
Think about the current state of the market and business in general. If things are trending down, you might find yourself giving up a little more when it comes to salary. If the industry is booming, you could potentially ask for a relatively high figure.
If you are in the process of a move, consider where your job will be located. If your location is changing, your salary expectations may need to be adjusted. Oftentimes employers take cost of living into effect when it comes to salaries.
For example, if you used to work in a major city, your salary was likely higher than someone doing the same job in a small city. You want to get as much data and information as possible before answering a question about your salary.
While it might be hard to know exactly what the company is willing to pay, there are ways you can get more information. If your first salary question comes from a recruiter, you can ask what the company is willing to pay. It's good to share your honest salary requirements early in the process so you aren't wasting your time or the company's time.
Remember, there is always time for negotiation. Experts say you can get creative when it comes to your salary requirements. Make a list of what is important to you and ask yourself:
Based on your answers to these questions, you will be able to better answer what your salary expectations and requirements are. If you tell a company what you want and they still can't get there, don't be discouraged. Maybe this isn't the right job for you.
Feel free to turn down a job offer if it doesn't work for you and your current life situation. Focus on the bigger picture and you will be better off in the long run.
Skip the field if it's optional. If it's a required field, try writing "Flexible depending on total compensation". Some job applications only allow numbers. If that's the case, provide a range. In the event that a range isn't allowed, you'll likely put yourself in a better negotiating position by including the higher end of your desired range.
No. Your cover letter is where you showcase your expertise and why you're a good fit for the position.