Negotiating your salary can feel awkward at the best of times. Not everyone is comfortable with talking about finance and money, especially when asking for higher pay.
However, as your career partner for life, we are here to tell you about your rights and offer guidance on how to successfully breach the subject in a professional manner. Even if you do not get the desired results right away, it will certainly break the ice for future reviews.
Read up on our tips for the best salary negotiations.
You’re either a job seeker who has been offered a new role or have been part of that team for a while. Perhaps you were expecting more pay for that particular position, or you feel like you’ve proven yourself to earn more money for the work you do.
If you are already part of the company, an annual performance review is a good time to request a pay rise – as is the end of your company's financial year. If you know that salary raises are finalised in January, asking in December is too late, as the budget will have already been set
If you are a job seeker being interviewed, it is clear they have the budget to take someone new on. This is your chance to show your skills and to enter a job where you are being paid a fair wage.
With this knowledge in mind, you can begin planning on when and how to ask for a raise or to negotiate a starting salary.
It is beneficial to know what the average salary is for your position, so you are as informed as possible. Look into the starting salary range and compare that with your own ranking and experience. Gather as much information as possible, so you can build your case and respond more confidently when or if you are challenged.
Gauging where you align within the average salary range according to your job title, will help give you a better understanding of your worth. Bring these examples to the table and politely challenge these comparisons. The hiring manager may be impressed by your savvy nature and drive!
Never go into a meeting or interview unprepared – even if you are on really good terms with your manager, they will still expect you to show your merit and prove you deserve a raise.
If you are negotiating the salary during a job interview, be prepared to show examples from previous employment where you have gone above and beyond. If your pay was higher in a previous place of employment, they will expect to see evidence of this. Usually, when moving jobs, it is assumed (depending on the situation) the candidate will be looking to earn more in a new role and sometimes hiring managers will be expecting a negotiation.
One of the best ways to prepare your case, is to have proof of your hard work and reflect on projects where you went the extra mile. Show how much value you bring to the company and showcase any positive feedback you’ve earned – include tangible performance data whenever possible to back up your proposition.
A simple way to prepare yourself is to ask a friend to practice with you the type of interview which is likely to take place. Ideally, this should be with someone who is knowledgeable about business or works in a corporate setting. Rehashing what to say and going over potential questions will ensure you are more sure of yourself when you negotiate your salary.
Sometimes a change to salary comes with new responsibilities. Are you prepared to take them on? Ask yourself what will change if this is granted to you and how this affects the structure of your day. Consider if you will need to report to new people or if it means managing team members.
Get clear on whether this will be the case and whether you desire these changes, before asking for a salary increase.
While for most, it is difficult to talk about money, it is worth remembering your director or manager can sometimes feel the same way about negotiating. Not to mention, the figure you ask for may have to be ran by several members of the hiring team before it is settled upon.
As we mentioned, even if you do not get the result you want right away, it will open a discussion further down the line. It is worth asking for feedback or ways to earn a pay rise, which will benefit both you and your employer. Keeping the discussion light, friendly and professional will ensure you can both navigate towards a positive conclusion.
When beginning a new job, sometimes the starting salary is non-negotiable until you have passed a probation period. Asking if there is room to grow and develop within the company is a great way to open the discussion of potential salary increase later on.
If you would like higher pay – simply ask for it. Too often new employees settle for the salary that’s given to them and stick with it.
Sometimes there may not be enough in your company’s budget to offer a rise in salary, so you may be denied. If this is the case, it is important to take this news gracefully in order to set yourself up in a positive light for the next time you ask.
In the meantime, start a plan to polish your skills so you can show your progress since your last salary meeting or interview.
You can always ask for alternate benefits such as more annual leave, flexible working options or a title change.
We hope you have found this useful. For more tips on career advice, click here.