Job Seeker Blog - Spark Hire

How to Negotiate Your Starting Salary

So you’ve gone on countless interviews and you’ve finally acquired your dream job. Or maybe just your job for the moment. Regardless, the next step to any new job is salary discussion. This is when all your years of haggling and negotiating with your parents as child will come in handy. Only now instead of just begging and pleading for what you want, you will have to plead your case intelligently and most importantly, as a well-informed individual. Starting salary negotiations are tricky and can veer off course quickly, but with these tips and a bit of your own research, a higher salary is indeed possible.

Research thoroughly and completely.
I cannot emphasize this point enough. Researching what others in your position have made will help you in your own negotiations. Check starting salary guides and what the company has normally paid others in the same position so you know if you’re being underpaid or if the company’s initial offer is reasonable for the duties and responsibilities you will be undertaking. Above all, have a minimum starting salary expectation and decide what is your deal breaker. It will save you and the company time in the end.

Sell yourself.
No one is saying sell out because it is not your personal worth that you are negotiating right now. It is your professional worth and what skills and accomplishments you will be bringing to the company. Make sure that the employer knows exactly why your experience and background is invaluable to the company. Have specific examples ready as to how you brought more revenue or cut costs at your last job in order to show the employer that you are worthy of a higher starting salary.

Let the employer state a number first. Then begin negotiating.
If an employer asks you what your starting salary expectations are, keep your answer brief and neutral. State that it is negotiable and that you are interested in a long and rewarding career with the company. Thus, an approved salary and benefits will surely be mutually agreed upon. Remember that companies will always begin at the bottom of the pay scale expecting you to counter with something much higher and then negotiate. After making your main arguments and “selling” yourself, give the employer a starting salary that is 5-10 percent higher than what you really want. That way there’s room for negotiation and hopefully, meeting in the middle.

Above all, be confident. Go into a salary negotiation sure of yourself and your worth. Most of all, be informed! It will show the employer that you have indeed done your research and will certainly be an asset to their company.

IMAGE: Courtesy of BizCovering

Stephanie Becerra

Stephanie Becerra is a Chicago native. She spent a couple of years working in social services before she realized that her passion was in writing. She is now writing full-time. When she has free time she enjoys reading and also listening to records on her dusty record player.

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