How to negotiate a starting salary

How to negotiate a starting salary

Salary negotiations can be intimidating, but it’s an important discussion that should take place when accepting a job offer.

Whether you’re an existing employee receiving a promotion or a new hire, you should feel empowered to negotiate to get what you deserve.

Prepare for the discussion

The most important takeaway: come prepared!

In order to fully prepare, you need to do your research. You can start by looking at similar titles and roles in your industry and region on websites like the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Understanding the average pay range can help you form your argument for negotiating. If you go into a negotiation discussion without a number, you’re leaving your salary up to the discretion of the hiring manager.

In addition to market research, you can use your work experience as evidence to support your argument in order to get the pay you deserve. For instance, a tenured candidate typically earns more than an employee in an entry-level position.

Ask about company benefits

Getting your desired salary is a normal part of the career advancement process. A salary is much more than a paycheck--it’s how your employer shows that they value you, your work ethic, and your skills.

Aside from the pay rate, it’s imperative to ask questions about work-life balance, flexibility, career development, and other general benefits. While you may not receive the exact pay you’re asking for, benefits like flexibility may outweigh your salary requirement.

Practice makes perfect

Salary negotiations don't have to be overwhelming if you practice your pitch. Feel confident in what you’re asking for and know your worth before heading into the discussion.

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