How to Negotiate the Salary You Want

over 1 year ago Carys Pegrum
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​Money. It’s always a touchy talking point. Whether that’s discussing finances with your partner or family, speaking to an advisor about your situation or when weighing up your incomings and outgoings. Negotiating the salary you want during a job interview is always a tough conversation. With many adverts stating ‘competitive salary’ on the job information, or the feeling that you’re worth more than your current salary, how do you approach your boss or potential new employer?

There are two strands to this scenario. Asking for the salary you want in your new role, or asking for a pay increase in your current job. Both come with a bit of leg work to get your facts correct, but also require you to look at the wider market and see what others with a similar skillset are being paid - so that you don’t miss out on potential benefits. Here’s our seven tips to tackle the negotiation.

1. Know your worth - Take a look at your education, skillset and experience and evaluate the salary you deserve. Also take a look at other job adverts in the field to do a comparison. It’s better to go into an interview or meeting with a figure that you would be happy with, than nothing at all. Don’t go in with a salary range, instead go direct with a figure that is higher than desired because they can always provide a counteroffer. Also speak to others in your industry or take a look at websites such as Glassdoor or Payscale which can provide insightful guidance.

2. Location, location, location - If you’re applying for a job in London, chances are your outgoings are going to be pretty steep. From rent or property values, to travel and the price of a cup of coffee, your salary should reflect on how these factors will impact your wallet in comparison to other locations across the UK. However, it’s important not to mention personal needs such as rising childcare costs and fuel, as others will be in the same boat. Instead focus on your achievements and performance and why you deserve that amount.

3. When to ask for a raise? - If you think it’s time for a pay increase, be prepared to back up your negotiation with a number of facts and questions to back you up. Have you worked there for over a year? Have you been given new responsibilities but haven’t been given any perks? Also if you’ve had gleaming reports from your line man-agers, then this also calls for some praise. Have a ‘brag sheet’ armed for when you enter the conversation and plan the right timing to have that meeting. Get in early be-fore performance review time to give managers enough opportunity to look at the evidence and come to a decision.

4. Be practical - No matter how much you want a job at x company, think realistically about the salary. If it’s so low that you won’t be able to make ends meet then be pre-pared to walk away. It’s never an easy decision, but you have to do what’s right for you knowing that other opportunities will be around the corner.

5. Be positive and polite - No one wants to be on the receiving end of a disgruntled employee that is pushy. Firstly, it sets the wrong tone, and secondly it doesn’t create a great atmosphere and can reflect badly on you. Before going into a meeting, keep your cool and be positive and polite. Go in with why you enjoy working for the company followed by why you would like a review, whilst remaining calm but firm with the conversation.

6. What else is on the table? - If they can’t match the salary you’re looking for, are there other benefits they may be able to include. Such as flexible working, gym membership or health insurance.

7. Open conversation is key - Negotiating is all about communication. The employer on the other side might not be able to meet your request, however don’t be afraid to ask questions. Things like “What is the budget for this position based on?” and “How can I help or improve to move your decision in my direction?” These show your willingness to have a future with the company and also hear from their side of the conversation about the position.

At Omega we provide a wide range of temporary, contract and permanent opportunities, in partnership with leading employers nationwide. We’ll work with you to find that perfect role to get you back on the ladder. Speak to our team on 01453 827333 to see how we can help you or visit our website to view our latest opportunities here.