Friday, December 24, 2010

5 steps to ensure the salary you want

Bangalore: The world is never an easy place when it comes to competition. And many are supposed to experience a chill in the spine when I specify competition in today's tight job market. Being in today's job market, experiencing the 'rolling stone' feeling, it might have taken away some job seekers' leverage in a salary negotiation.But even if you lack that 'positive advantage' in you, that doesn't mean you should fall head over heels and accept the first offer that comes your way. This is a country where we can find some strange pay patterns and as the time goes, the same jobs may find stark differences in salary as the place and firm differs. In such an ambience, to get the best compensation possible without making your potential employer raise an eye brow, you can better keep in mind these 5 steps:
1. Do the essential research - To track down what your colleagues and other professionals in your industry get paid used to be a hard task earlier. But various resources have attempted to resolve this enigma and will probably help you in getting the essential data you need to know. Web portals like and give salary ranges to align the job seeker's expectations based on his/her position, location, and experience. You may also get the salaries posted by the employees at the actual company you're applying to in web sites like You can also talk to experts in the field and acquaintances to get an exact picture.
2. Don't be the first one to set the number - I am sure that many job seekers go through a pressure situation when they face the inevitable question like "What's your salary expectation?" "What salary range are you looking for?" "What do you get paid currently?" etc. Whichever way you may trick yourself out of the question, never give out a first idea about the salary or don't set the figures at the first place. You might not make it to the next stage if you place a high digit. Too low, and an employer will either think you're not qualified or desperate. So, if it's an application form better avoid the question with the diplomatic answer 'not applicable'. If you're forced to say how much you make during the interview process, try giving your "total compensation," which many large employers will break out for you on the company's internal HR website. If you are still pressured to specify an exact figure, try giving out a range, which if low should be the least you can be happy with and which if high will make you really happy.
3. Display your career credits - The most resourceful and tactful way to justify asking for a certain salary is by showing your achievements in the job career so far. Once you elucidate that you can add lot of value to the firm, you can persuade the new employer to give you the salary you specify. Your earlier career merits are the ones that will bear testimony to the future results you will produce.
4. Don't be scared to negotiate - It is a powerful way to make the impression of how your behavior as an employee will be when you negotiate on salary and benefits. Practice discretion and research the baseline salary for your level, market, and geographic location. Job seekers are estimated to negotiate by most of the employers. So you can shrug off on the first offer for a further negotiation instead of accepting it right away.
5. Negotiate beyond the salary requirements - Always try to negotiate the pay package at a level higher than the norms so that if they negotiate further, then the low amount should be the minimum you'd be happy with and the high amount should be what would make you happy. Try to negotiate on other benefits and incentives if your new employer says budget restrictions keep him from going as high as you'd like. The other items where you can negotiate includes job description and scope of work, starting date, budget and resources, relocation expenses, vacation time, education assistance expenses, professional and gym memberships, company car reimbursement, stock options, bonus.

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