Salary and Benefits: Let’s Get Ready to Negotiate!

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When you are faced with having to negotiate job benefits, you might feel that the task is too much to handle. Will I come across as greedy if I ask for a lot? Will they think it’s a red flag if I ask for too little? There is a fair amount of fear surrounding negotiating but you need to remember that if you reached the negotiation stage, they are invested in you.

In order to be confident within a negotiation, it is vital that you do your research. It is safe to assume that a potential employer is knowledgeable and a solid negotiation cannot happen unless you are armed with that same awareness of salary ranges within your field.

Here are some websites that are helpful in doing your initial research into the world of salary. It is also helpful to conduct research through your network and ask someone in your field about the going market rate for similar positions.

It is also important to know that salary is only a part of the negotiation game. Consider training, professional development, vacation time, and other benefits that you could gain from your work place. You might also be able to negotiate a 3 or 6-month review with an associated pay increase if you meet certain goals.

Once you have an outline for negotiation, the actual negotiation should be more comfortable. When you are entering a negotiation, an employer might make an offer that is 15-20% below their budget to allow room to negotiate. Always let the hirer make the first offer and work from there. You will know if the offer is fair based on the research you’ve done. Remain diplomatic in order to get the best possible offer without jeopardizing a “good enough” offer. While negotiating remain interested and engaged, make it clear you are very interested in the position. This will allow you to maintain a positive energy and companies will likely invest in people excited to work there rather than an apathetic applicant.

Still wondering about Salary Negotiation? Check out this article.

–Brian Park, UVM Career Center Counselor

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