One of the most important things you can do for your future career success is to ensure you are appropriately compensated.
You have perfected your resume and read job interview tips. Now, you're probably wondering how to negotiate a job offer to get a higher starting salary, more paid time off, and better perks.
This guide explains how to negotiate salary and other benefits. It also discusses why you should negotiate and what to ask for during the negotiation. Don't walk away from easy money; instead, set yourself up for success by negotiating.
Steps to Negotiate Your Job Offer Successfully
Why Negotiate Your Job Offer?
A successful salary negotiation can shape your career for years. Consider this: raises are often based on your current salary. Even if you change companies, your salary history affects your earning potential. In this way, your starting salary can impact your income for your entire career.
Many employers expect a negotiation, and the initial offer is their opening bid. In fact, most companies expect to pay more than the initial salary offer. If you accept without a counter offer, you could be leaving easy money on the table.
What Should You Ask for?
This is one of the hardest questions when deciding how to negotiate a job offer. However, doing some research can help you figure out what to request.
When it comes to salary, research your market worth and current economic trends. Learning about salary ranges for similar job titles in your geographic area helps you determine a reasonable amount for your starting salary. Typically, candidates who successfully negotiate their salaries ask for 5-15% more than the starting offer.
When negotiating, think strategically. Assume that you will settle in the middle between the employer's first offer and your counter offer, and pick a higher number than what you actually want. For example, if you would be happy with $5,000 more than the starting offer, ask for $10,000. That way, whether they accept the higher number or negotiate you down, you will walk away happy.
Finally, do not limit your negotiations to salary alone. Some employers cannot increase your salary offer by much, but they can offer more PTO or other benefits.
Frequently Asked Questions
Most employers expect potential hires to negotiate their starting salary and benefits. Thus, it is uncommon for a company to withdraw a job offer because a candidate negotiated about salary. Keep in mind, however, that some companies have little latitude when it comes to raising their starting salary offers, so you may have to settle for the initial offer.
In most cases, candidates should negotiate a job offer. By negotiating a salary increase, new hires often increase their earnings for years, since many companies grant raises as a percentage of salary.
It is a good rule not to negotiate salary until you receive a job offer. The first offer should provide detailed information on the starting salary and benefits. However, you can ask about the salary range for the job during the hiring process to make sure it lines up with your expected salary.
Yes, it is okay to negotiate salary over email. It is also a good idea to ask the hiring manager for time to review the initial offer, whether you plan to negotiate via email, by phone, or in person. Negotiating over email gives candidates time to formulate a response and creates a written record of the negotiations. However, some employers prefer to negotiate on the phone or in person.
Header Image Credit: SDI Productions | Getty Images
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