Useful advice on how to negotiate the best starting salary for your job

In the not so distant past, jobs were hard to come by and there were a huge amount of demand for every job position. These days, there is more of a demand for employees, meaning that you can be pickier about what job you accept. You are also in a better position to negotiate on your starting salary package.

If you were lucky to get a job in the first place, you would not want to jeopardise the position by trying to get a higher salary right off the bat. However, if you have been actively sought after by a company, you are in a strong position when it comes to negotiating a better salary. Here is some advice that will help you to do that.

best starting salary

Completely understand the job

You would be amazed at the amount of people who apply and accept jobs when they don’t understand what exactly the position entails. In order to come up with an estimate of what you feel that you should be paid, break down the job position into a few different areas. List all of the responsibilities, expectations and requirements that the job entails. By knowing these factors, you will get a better picture of what type of work you will be involved with and the stress levels of the job at hand.

Before you go into a meeting to discuss salary, you should be well versed on the company’s procedures when it comes to salary and pay increases. Every business conducts these things their own way, so if you are unsure, you should ask the person about the process. Learn about how the business will review the performance of employees, as well as how pay rises and promotions will be given.

You should be going into the interviewing process armed with the necessary salary information of the company’s competitors, as well as the industry as a whole. This puts you in a better negotiating position, as you have the exact details of what you can expect. A lot of companies require certain qualifications or certifications, in order for you to reach a certain salary level e.g. you may earn more if you are earning a certification online.

Know your strengths

Just like when you have to promote yourself in a positive light when you want to win the job in the first place, you should once again highlight how you are different from all other employees. What strengths do you bring to the table that are unique and highly sought after? You can use these strengths during the negotiation process to leverage yourself to a better salary.

You should always have a number in mind that is your walk away point. As you have your target salary nailed down in your mind, you need to have a bottom range as to what you are willing to accept. You should write down the reasons as to why you would not accept any lower than this amount, and outline them to the company if needs be.

Gordon Buckland