December 3, 2017

Learn How to Negotiate Pay Package Offers

Don't leave money on the table.
Learn to negotiate.
Negotiating is something that makes most professionals of all skill levels shudder. Most people avoid it. But, did you know if you avoid it you stand to loose tens of thousands of dollars over the course of your career? 

To build our knowledge and confidence in negotiating job offers, Ann House, Director, from the University of Utah Personal Money Management Center and Career Coach, Francine Mahak from the Career & Professional Development Center advised students and alumni  during the Career Conference that happened in November 2017 on the University of Utah campus. Check out the tips below to learn more: 

Tip 1: Never be the first to give a number or range. 
If the job you are applying for will have multiple interviews, it’s best not to talk about salary at all until the last round of interviews. Typically, whoever gives the number first has less bargaining power. Try to deflect (Let’s talk more about how my experience adds value to this job.) or reflect (What do you think I am worth?). 

Do not accept the first thing they say to you. 

When it is time to negotiate, do listen to the entire offer and package they are offering. If it makes sense, ask for a day to sleep on it (think about it and get back to them). Typically one or two business day is a good window of time to consider the offer and respond. Do ask the interviewer how you can contact him or her when you are ready to answer.

Tip 2: Salary is not the only variable to negotiate on. 
While it is critical that you can identify your base salary needs (see next tip), don’t forget that there are other elements of a salary package in addition to money; some of which vary from job to job. Some other elements of a salary package people mentioned negotiating on include: vacation time, laptops or electronics, work from home days or flexi time, travel allowance, child care, and others. 

Tip 3: Always, always, always research the market rate for the job you are applying for.
Many sites such as Glassdoor and Salary.com can help with this. Market rates can vary on experience level, company salary ranges and cost of living in that area. Check a few different sites such as Nerdwallet or bankrate.com can help you with the research on that. 

Once you finish your research, practice negotiation role plays with career coaches or anyone willing. 

If you are a current student looking for your first job, you still do have some power to negotiate. Visit your college career center to ask for tips, advice and suggestions on how you could apply these tips to your job search. 

Note that the tips in this blog were presented presented to alumni and current students during the Career Conference hosted by the University of Utah Career & Professional Development Center in November 2017.  

More Resources: 
University of Utah Personal Money Management Center  
Negotiating Salary for your First Job – at Payscale.com 

Read More About the Career Conference: 
General Overview 
Tips to Beat the Applicant Tracking System 
How to Counter Objections for Employment as an International Student in the U.S.  



Photo credit: Steve Smith @flickr used under creative commons

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