New Job - New Salary

The salary that employees are paid for their first job at a company will set the benchmark for future compensation

When looking for a job, you must remember that you are doing work for a salary. In order to get the right salary individuals need to follow these rules to maximize their compensation.

Do not say what you are looking for

When asked to include salary requirements with your resume do not do that - leave it blank. That is typically a company's first screen, and it can be used against to exclude you or under pay you.. People agonize over what to reveal, because they are afraid of pricing themselves out of a good job. A good answer is to simply put "Open" in that spot. If your qualifications are on target, they'll call you. If in the interview you're asked what you made at your last job, reply by asking about the range for the one you are applying for. You'd be surprised how many managers or human resource representatives will tell you.

Do not give salary history

In many job applications, an employer will ask for your salary history. It is perfectly acceptable to write "Willing to discuss at appropriate time during interview process" and leave those numbers blank. Writing down those numbers pigeonholes you, and reduces your negotiation power.

Do not negotiate salary in an interview

Don't negotiate salary in the interviews. Instead, negotiate when you'll give them your salary requirements. When they ask you for that figure, tell them you don't know what you'd require until you have a clear picture of the job requirements and potential for advancement over the next five years. After you have that information, and you're asked again for that number, respond by asking to go through what I call your "impacts" - areas of your job that directly impact the company's bottom line. This discussion will allow you to demonstrate what you bring to the table. At the end of that discussion, simply tell them that you are very interested in the position, and that you'd seriously consider any offer they'd like to make.

Network even after an offer is made but has not been accepted the position

Once a job offer is made, it's not a done deal until it is accepted and the employees first day. Until that happens, keep networking and looking for jobs. It may give you valuable market-worth data about the position you've been offered. It may also be a safety net in case something goes awry between the time you receive an offer and the time you accept it.

When accepting the offer be clear about what the job and salary are

Once an offer is given, you have the right to ask for a clarification on it. Asking "Is there any flexibility in this offer?" may help to open a discussion of increasing the offer. If it does, don't expect a large boost in base pay, but rather, an extra week of paid vacation, a signing bonus or other such perks.

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