Economist Linda Babcock of Carnegie Mellon University estimates that by not negotiating salary at the beginning of your career, you could be missing out on between $1 million and $1.5 million in lifetime earnings. Yet a recent Glassdoor survey found that 59 percent of American employees did not negotiate their current salary.
Know Your Budget
Set Your Range
Before you negotiate, establish your range. Use these three salary figures as a guide: – Minimum Salary – The minimum amount you would accept based on your needs.
Avoid Discussing Salary History
Some cities and states have banned employers from asking questions about salary history, but it could come up. Avoid disclosing your salary history if asked about it during an interview.
Negotiating your salary after receiving an offer is generally better than during the interview process. Playing hardball during the early stages of the hiring process could eliminate you from consideration.
Consider the Whole Package
Benefits vary widely from company to company, especially regarding health insurance contributions, dental coverage, 401(k) matching, paid time off, stock options, and bonus plans. Make sure you understand the entire compensation package.
If the salary is firm, you can negotiate additional benefits or perks. The company may view benefits as a less costly way of keeping employees happy. They could be open to enhancing your benefits package instead of paying you a higher base salary.
Prepare a Strong Case Once you receive an offer you feel could be better, do not immediately respond with a request for a higher salary. That could make it seem like you think your pay rate is the most critical part of the job.