3 May 2018
How to: Negotiate Your Salary

Negotiating your salary isn’t an easy task. And one of the biggest problems is knowing how much to ask for. As a general rule of thumb, your number should be 10% – 20% more than what you’re earning now or what the job is currently advertised for. A company usually budgets for 15% – 20% more than the first offer so they know that they can afford you.

If you think you deserve a pay rise, be prepared to prove your worth and negotiate your salary. Be strong without receiving the Alan Sugar treatment. What you think and your boss thinks can be worlds apart. Before you go charging into your boss’s office demanding the green paper, consider the other rewards your company offers you and see whether your friends on similar wages get the same benefits. These can include flexible work practices, bonuses based on individual and/or company performance, parking and private health care along with use of a company mobile, laptop or vehicle.

When employers are willing to increase salaries, they do so moderately over a period of time such as every year you have been with the company. If you are approaching your next salary review, RedBox has provided a list of things to do before hand:

  1. Prepare a list of your recent achievements that exceed your objectives-

If this is your first review, look back at your original job description.  This gives you strong basis to support the value you are providing to the company and how far you have come in the year.

  1. List any changes or increased workloads / responsibilities you are now undertaking that aren’t in your original job description.

  1. Keep calm and stay professional

Crying will not help you win this battle nor bringing your personal life into it. Remain professional and focus on your accomplishments and value to the role in order to prove your point.

  1. Be realistic in what you are asking

Yes you work hard and go above and beyond many others in the office, but asking for a million pounds will get you laughed out of the room.  Be prepared with the value of yourself within the business and explain this clearly with facts and figures.

  1. Have a backup plan

If your boss is not willing to budge on this occasion or would like to review your performance themselves over the next couple of months, arrange another meeting in advance for 3 – 6 months’ time. That way you can secure another opportunity to discuss this.

If you are applying for a new job we advise you to research the company and salary range for the position you are applying for prior to the interview. Conduct salary research so you can understand your market value by:

  • Comparing salaries in job adverts on the job boards – remember different locations might attract higher or lower wages. You can always ask your recruitment agency for their opinion.
  • Checking out online salary surveys / averages to see what figure you should be aiming for
  • Contacting those in the same job or industry to find out what other companies pay

An interviewer will want to discuss salary as early as possible so they do not waste time with someone they cannot afford. They may also like to discuss your past salary, in order to keep your salary expectations low. You need to delay the talk of salary as long as possible until you can convince them that you are the person they need for the job. So:

  • Avoid discussing the salary until you have a job offer. If you do, you could price yourself out of a job.
  • Do not disclose past salary. If pushed for a figure, you could say, ‘but of course, I wouldn’t accept that figure at today’s rate of pay’ or ‘but I took that lower wage in view of training and experience’. Alternatively, make sure you state the other rewards you received from the company to compensate the lower wage.
  • If pressed by the interviewers about a desired salary, try ‘What kind of salary range are you working with?’ or ‘I’d like to make as much as other employees with my qualifications’ or ‘What is a typical salary for this position?’ or ‘Until I learn more about the responsibilities I cannot make a meaningful suggestion, but will consider a reasonable offer’.

And finally, once you have got the offer you desire after your awesome negotiating skills, make sure you get it in writing and that it is actioned immediately with signatures. Good luck!

Candidate Hints & Tips