5 Tips to Negotiating Salary

Once you make it through several rounds of interviews, the most challenging part of the process is over. However, there is one more thing to consider before you accept any job offer: salary negotiation. For many people, negotiating salary is uncomfortable and scary. To help you confidently ask for what you want, here are five tips to help you negotiate a great salary.   

Define Your Compensation Requirements
Taking into consideration your monthly expenses, clothing, housing, transportation, healthcare, lifestyle, and other commitments, examine what is valuable to you and what might make an offer more appealing. Create a compensation package worksheet to help you review what salary you really need and what would be icing on the cake.

Sell Your Accomplishments
You are your greatest advocate. Therefore, you need to showcase the parallels between the requirements for the position you are applying to and your skill sets, experience, and compensation from your previous (or current) role. Remember you need to show how your skills will benefit the company.

Be Honest
Do not inflate salaries from previous jobs. Instead, be honest about your needs and expectations. If an employer discovers you were deceitful, you may ruin your chances of landing a position.

Remember to Weigh Additional Benefits
It is important to seek out any additional benefits an organization offers before discussing salary requirements. This is because there is always some give-and-take when it comes to balancing benefits and salary, and certain benefits may offset receiving a lower salary offer than you hoped for. For example, you may find that a work-from-home schedule, flexible hours, or a benefit like tuition remission makes an offer more appealing to you, which is something to keep in mind so you negotiate appropriately.

Be Professional
Searching for a job and negotiating salary requirements can be stressful. No matter what, remember to remain professional throughout all stages of your job search. A true professional is prepared, is knowledgeable about the position and comparable salaries, and remains respectful throughout the entire process.

Salary negotiation will always be a part of the job search process. Although intimidating, it is a skill you can learn and master. For assistance with salary negotiation and other aspects of your job search, visit CareerQuest to access the many career tools available to you or to set up an appointment with a UMUC Career Advising Specialist.

Rhoda Smackum is a career advising specialist at University of Maryland University College. She is an associate certified career coach and a certified master of career services. Her areas of expertise include career transition, career exploration and job search strategy.