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15 Important Salary Negotiation Tips That You Must Know

Do you find it difficult to negotiate the salary you deserve or lack confidence and think that negotiating salaries can lead to job denials? If yes, think again! 

When you get nervous, fail to convince or lack confidence, here is a good read for you on how to negotiate salaries.

So the next time you perform well in an interview and are apprehensive about whether you will be able to get the package you want, then here are the tips for you.

These salary negotiation tips are helpful for both beginners and experienced professionals.

1. Conduct a Background Research Work

One of the most important salaries negotiating tips is to indulge in background research.

You need to understand the portfolio of the company. 

You should know things like how the company reviews the performance of its employees, processes for pay hikes, criteria for performance, bonus policies and a lot more, and you can negotiate better. Also, find out the average salaries and the salary ranges for similar jobs in your geographical locations.

When you want to negotiate salaries, you need to know the ideal salary of the job with your type of qualification and experience.

You should be well-equipped with all the necessary information. If you are better armed with all the valuable information you need, you are in a better position to negotiate.

2. Know Your Strengths and Value

Confidence is a key to successful negotiation. You should be well aware of your core strengths and value.

You should know how you can prove to be useful to the company. 

Before attending the interview, you should conduct a SWOT analysis to understand your special skills.

Do you have useful soft skills that make you more like an asset to the company? If you have differentiators, you should write them down.

You can perform SWOT analysis online (Strengths, weaknesses, threats and opportunities.

This analysis is a framework which is used for a thorough self-evaluation. If you are applying for a competitive position and want to negotiate your beginning salary with the hiring manager, you should conduct a SWOT analysis beforehand. 

Your level of experience and the unique attributes present on the table will make you a highly valuable candidate.

With your attributes, you can command even more salary than what is prevalent in the market.

You must back up your arguments when submitting a counteroffer for salary negotiations. Instead of just asking for a higher salary, quoting a figure, or asking for a raise, you should try endorsing your salary by showing your strengths, skills, and experiences. 

You need to understand to project how you are the most suitable candidate for the candidature all through the interview.

3. Let The Hiring Manager Talk About it First

If you have a certain salary figure in mind after conducting market research, you should practice and get ready to negotiate. However well prepared for the negotiations, you should never take the initiative of salary conversation by yourself. 

It sends a wrong impression on the employers as they begin to think that you are more interested in compensation than adding value to the company.

Salary should be discussed at the end of the interview, and employers should be the ones to talk about it first. 

This shows that employers are more interested in your candidature, and you are in a better position to negotiate.

Also, do not talk about your previous salary history unless you are asked to.

4. Understand Your Package Well

Even if you have conducted thorough market research and know the salary that your profile and type of qualification deserve, do not simply deny the quoted salary by the employer.

Some job aspirants think they will quote a higher figure than what will be offered. This should not to be done. Companies offer a complete package which is much more than just salary.

It comprises your PF, medical/health insurance, cost of transportation and accommodation etc.

So, you should get to know and understand the offered package. 

Get to know what additional perks and benefits it contains apart from salary.

The consolidated package you are offered may be higher than the salary you want. It is always wise to compromise on the salary part if you get benefits like additional vacation days, flexible work hours, work from home, and more.

5. Put forth a Strong Candidature

Before moving on to the salary negotiation part of the interview, you should put forth a strong candidature.

You need to highlight your strengths, soft skills and what value you can add to the company. 

You should be able to convince the interview panel that you rightly deserve the package that you are being offered.

You may have a good amount of experience in a similar role, certifications or a set of technical skills, so you should not fail to talk about all these during the interview. 

You will be better positioned to negotiate if you have made a solid case.

6. Do not be Dishonest

Hiring managers sometimes gauge your honesty also.

So, your job offer may be withdrawn if your hiring manager finds that you have inflated your past salaries and presented a manipulative figure. 

You need to maintain honesty about the past salaries and compensations you used to get.

Maintain complete transparency and do not discuss your past salary records until you are told to do so.

7. Practice Polishing Your Negotiation Skills Beforehand

Before going to the interview, you should be better prepared with what to talk about when it comes to negotiating the salary.

After all, words matter, and you should know exactly what to speak to affect the psychology of the interviewer. 

You need to have a practice session at home with someone who has experience in taking interviews.

Choose someone who can guide you well about what to speak and how to project confidence.

Know the Dead Point and Wrap Up Wisely

When you are confident, salary negotiations become easier, but you should know the right words. 

For instance, if you are quoted a figure X for the salary, and you think that you deserve a better one than that, say that you are just excited to join the company and understand the budgeting issues but would be happier if the salary had been (some additional amount to X).

When you say so, there will be two cases. In the first case, you will be told that that was the final offer, and we cannot go beyond that. If this happens, there is no further room for negotiations. 

On the contrary, if the interviewer says it may be difficult but seeing your strong candidature, we can do something, there is a ray of hope.

If the interviewer leaves the discussion on salary, saying you will be informed tomorrow about the same, there is a good chance that you get at least some hike on the salary quoted by the interviewer.

8. Interviewers Leverage Your Situation

You will always have an edge and are in a better negotiating position if you are employed at the time of the interview.

However, you will not know how to negotiate salaries when you are unemployed at that time.

Interviewers understand this and take benefit of your situation. If you cannot let the job offer go, you cannot negotiate. Contrary to this, if the job you are applying for is paying you lesser than the competitor, you can use it as a point for a bargain.

However, keep in mind that interviewers begin with the lowest figure they can pay and go up. So, in no case, the first offer made by them should be accepted. 

If you think you are offered a much lower salary, you should say:

“Though I would love to join your company, the compensation is far lower than I expect. So, give me a day or two to reply.”

If a company thinks you are the best choice, your salary will be hiked accordingly.

9. Get Things Done In Black And White

Once you and the hiring manager are settled on a certain compensation package, you should get it in black and white.

Apart from the salary amount, what special arrangements are made for you, what signing bonus or allowances you are getting, and the full job description with the responsibilities you are supposed to undertake, everything should be mentioned in the document.

Along with the salary figure, perks, insurance policies, and other benefits you are getting from the company should be mentioned.

Both parties should endorse the document. Doing so ensures that everything is clear to both parties so that any miscommunication can be avoided.

10. Carry Yourself Gracefully

You need to understand the fact that doing negotiations does not mean being argumentative. It is all about tactful discussions.

Your conversation should be based on facts and figures, and at no point should you involve emotions. 

Throughout the interview, you should try to carry yourself gracefully during unpleasant situations.

Most importantly, you should thank the hiring manager for bestowing the opportunity on you at the end of the interview.

11. Keep a Salary Range in Your Mind

When you do not know what salary compensation you should ask for, you need to find a range where you can work.

You need to pick a higher end of that range and begin to negotiate from there on. 

You need to remember that hiring managers also have a salary range in their minds, and they start from the lower end.

If you have a number fixed in your mind, you will not go too far from that number. Do not let the hiring manager dictate the terms of the negotiations; be the one to do so to get a favourable response.

12. If You Are Incurring Any Job-Related Expenditures, Let them know

If you are accumulating any costs by taking up the job, you should let this known to the employer.

For example, if you have to settle in a new city for a job, lease a home, arrange transportation, etc., you should make all these expenses plus your commute or fuel expenses that you incur while coming to the office.

You need to ask the employers to adjust the salary accordingly.

13. Get Ready for the Tough Questions

Be prepared for the uncomfortable questions from the recruiters.

They may ask questions that you will find tough to answer.

As negotiators, they can ask you questions that can put you in a dilemma. You need to be honest.

Be prepared for the questions like:

“Are we your top choice?” “if we come up with a salary of your expectation, will you join us immediately?” “Do you have offers from other companies as well?” you can ask a lot of other similar questions.

14. Check Out the Benefits You Are Getting

Sometimes, employers fail to provide the type of salary you need. If they give a certain form of compensation, you should readily accept it.

You can compromise on a lower-than-expected salary if you are offered extra vacation days, sign-on bonus days, work-from-home opportunities, etc. 

15. When Should You Negotiate Your Salary?

Once you know how to negotiate salaries, you should choose the right time for it.

You should not do this during the earlier stages of the interview process.

You will get the best leverage when you prove that you are just the best candidate for the job.

Do not begin to negotiate salary right at the beginning, as this will harm your chances of securing a job. Let the employers know that you are willing to join the company and ask for a day or two to take suggestions from experienced people. 

The most important salary negotiation tip is to be confident, poised and self-aware about your strengths. 

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