HOW TO ADDRESS YOUR SALARY EXPECTATIONS
The interview process can be daunting to say the least, from looking professional to being prepared, job seekers are under tremendous pressure. It’s easy to forget about one imperative topic: salary expectations. When an interviewer asks what your salary expectations are in your next role, you should have a clear and coherent answer. There are countless horror stories about jobseekers blindly throwing out numbers that can make or break your chances of getting hired.
It’s a hard topic to discuss if you haven’t already thought about your answer and taken the necessary steps to prepare. Take note of the following tips to help you address salary expectations:
Do the research - Actually sit down and find out as much as you can about the going rate for the position you’re interviewing for. Salary websites can often be misleading based on location and the scope of responsibility for each job. So, ask around, find out what people in your area in a similar role are making and base your salary expectations off realistic numbers. You can also reach out to local professional organizations/recruiters to get a better idea of what they are seeing as far as salary/hourly rates for your position.
Provide a range - Instead of coming up with a hard number, look at what you’re making right now and what other professionals are making in your line of work and find a range that works for you. Make sure that whatever range you come up with that you will be happy with the low end. If you say 45K-50K, you will have to be comfortable with 45K because that’s what you told the employer you’d be ok with.
Don’t play games - If you’re making 45K at your current position and you tell an employer you’re looking to make 60K+, you’re treating your career like a game of poker. While asking for a salary increase from your current position is completely ok, you should be realistic about how much more you’re asking for and make sure it’s relatively close to what the employer is offering for the position. If the potential employer somehow found out you asked for 15K more than you said you were making, they might consider you untrustworthy and not even consider hiring you. Companies can also request W-2’s or pay stubs to verify salary, so you don’t want to be caught being dishonest.
Identify why you’re valuable - If you have special skills, certifications and abilities that the employer might otherwise have to train people in on, express the value of you already having those skills. If you’re Google certified in AdWords, classes can cost up to $500 to become certified. Go through your resume and gather this information so you can express it in salary negotiations.