Five Tips to Really Negotiate a Higher Salary

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This goes if you’re applying for an advertised job or interviewing for an in-house promotion. Most companies post a salary range with job descriptions. If the salary isn’t posted, do research until you find a baseline range that matches your level of experience. This should be obvious, but it may not be: if the pay range is too low, pass. In this economy, talking to a prospective (or current) employer to up the salary scale is next to impossible – and it’s not the place to start negotiating.

What are you worth to an employer? Quick, come up with a number.

OK. Now, let’s come up with a realistic number.

Negotiating salary is, for most of us, as difficult as getting past phone screens and interviews to the job offer. It can be tough to think of yourself in dollar terms. If you’re not prepared to negotiate, you’re sure to be unhappy with almost any offer. So don’t be caught flat-footed. Especially today – when companies may not have much flexibility with money – getting to the offer, and making sure it’s fair to all, is a necessary skill.

Meghan M. Biro has written for GlassDoor about questions to ask during an interview to help you understand a company’s culture, and ways to figure the real and soft costs of commuting. Those topics also figure into a salary negotiation.

Salary, for example, is one measure of a company’s culture. Employees should be compensated fairly, compensation should be on par with similar companies in the region and the company should have a documented performance review process. If it’s a start-up, compensation may be difficult to benchmark, but for more established companies – say, those in business for more than ten years – it’s a simple matter to check,, The Ladders and similar sites to get an idea of pay scales.

Commuting is also a salary issue. If you are looking at a long commute, for example, there are many associated costs – read the post and check out the calculator.

In salary negotiations, research, preparation and a realistic attitude will be your best friends. Here are a few things to think about.


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