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An interview is like a trade. You show off your skills, experiences and proficiencies, ‘sell’ it to a company, and they ‘buy’ them. When you are being offered the position, your salary negotiation skill will come into place!

Other than the need to know your worth and the median salary range in the market right now, you need to be equipped with negotiation skills! Using the wrong strategies might just lead you to the path of failure. No one wants to be underpaid and learning some great negotiation skills will do you some good!

Can’t wait to negotiate? Slow down! Be a smart candidate and here are the top 5 mistakes when negotiating a salary that you have to avoid:

Lack of research

Some candidates state their expected salary without much researching. They tend to decide the salary expectation merely based on what they need or by guessing.

Do research the valid market rate for the job position! Considering the working experience, qualifications, responsibilities and the geographic area of the industry are essential, as these points will determine the standard wage you deserve. Online salary reference is a useful resource, but keep in mind that the listed job titles might have a different scope of responsibilities.

It is also advisable to check within your network of people in the same job position. If it’s needed, do cross check with some recruiters from a professional organisation to find out how you should measure your expected salary.

Not asking for more

For some people, it might be awkward to negotiate a sensitive topic like salary. However, not negotiating at all might be worse off. Are you afraid if the employers will pull the offer? As long as you know where your capabilities are and the ability to fulfil well or even more than what the company expected. Do not ‘downgrade’ yourself so that you can get the job! Other than just considering the salary you are asking for, employers are also looking for the right talent fit!

Failing to consider non-salary items

Monetary might not give you the job satisfaction you need. Value your future employers, as they might be giving you a standard base salary but they could be offering other great benefits. A yearly bonus, regular business trips (across the cities or countries!), allowances, rewards to achievements and great retirement plan are some non-salary items worth considering! Thus, look at the overall package they are offering you.

Allow your future employers to know your last drawn salary

Some employers will ask you about the salary you are drawing in your previous job. Let them know and justify why you are currently asking for more.

Don’t take it personally

Salary negotiation is a good idea, but you might feel undervalued should the process goes the opposite direction. Do keep in mind that, business is still a business, and the employers will hire the best talents they can afford. When negotiation goes tough, and you are not able to accept the undervaluing offer, just let it go. Some companies also have their standard rules to the tier of salary package offered.

Salary negotiation is both challenging and tricky. Avoiding these 5 mistakes might help you out in future! Check out www.jobiness.com and find out what are you worth now!

Next read: Are You Well-Prepared for Your Internship? Beware of These Top 8 Common Mistakes!

Should You Share Your Salary Information?

Salary is a sensitive issue that most people might not be open to discussing. But people, always want to find out how much are you getting currently. From your colleagues to your future employer. The question is, should you share your salary information with them?

It is advisable that you keep your salary information to yourself as usually in your letter of appointment, most companies do include a clause that you should not share your salary information with anyone. However, it depends on who you are talking to.

Let’s see who they are:

1. Colleagues

Some companies have a policy of the prohibition of sharing salary information with colleagues. It seems like a wise choice since some employees can find it disappointing after they know other employees paychecks and increments. Feelings of unfairness might arise and disrupt the smooth flow of the company operations.

Indeed, it’s way better for you to avoid discussing your salary with other employees. It could affect you or the other person’s work performance. Salary is confidential information, just like every HR would say.

Bottom line: Don’t share your salary information with your colleagues, even if it’s your best friend in the office. Conversely, don’t ask other employees’ their salaries. In the end, it could affect your commitment and dedication to the company.

2. Future employers

During a job interview, salary talk might be your favourite topic. However, remember to postpone salary talk until there is an offer on the table. In fact, there is no right or wrong answer, because you don’t know what the future employer  But most of them would like to know your salary history, so they are in the driving seat of the salary negotiation.

Bottom line: Don’t give your salary information from the beginning. Try to postpone it as long as you can. The tactic is to make a bargain with the future employer as some might deter from meeting you due to perhaps, your current drawing salary is above what they would like to offer to their new employee. Let them know that your expected salary is negotiable so that you can negotiate an acceptable salary package with your future employer.  

3. Job communities

Many job communities encourage you to share your salary information anonymously. Is it safe for you to do that? Apparently, yes. You can now contribute to the professional world about your salary, and no one will ever know that it’s you.

Sharing salary information on these kinds of websites is good as at the same time, you will be able to know your worth. If many professionals do this, it will be easier for us to research our market value. You don’t even need to ask your colleagues about their salaries!

Bottom line: Job communities are there to solve this salary information problem. In real life, the norm is to avoid discussing salary. But in the cyber world where you can go anonymous, it’s the right thing to do.

Start with yourself. Contribute to your favourite job community regarding your salary information. You can share your salary information on Jobiness, here. Anonymously.

How to Get Your Well-Deserved Raise

Do you feel like your work is a bit overwhelming, but you are underpaid? Every employee understand that they have to perform well, and the raise might follow. But some companies are not good at employee retention. Of course, most companies don’t want to hand out money only for its employees. It is normal for them if employees come and go, yet the factor is only about low salary.

It might be tempting to just secretly looking for a new job with better pay. However, you enjoy working there, apart from being underpaid. You are not so sure that you are going to love the next company you are working for as much as this one. You bonded well with your colleagues, and you like the company’s work environment as well. But, your salary is just ridiculous.

Here is how to get your well-deserved raise:

1. Research first

Is your salary really low based on your position in the office? Let’s be realistic for a while. Do some researches on the pay-information sites. Check whether your current salary is below the standard. For more information, discuss earnings with your colleagues, especially those people in similar positions. But the latter tip may be confidential for some.

However, research is absolutely necessary, as it can help you determine how much a raise is reasonable to request. You must know the exact number that you will ask for a raise. Plus, you have to be sure that the number is a fair amount of money to ask for.

2. Pitch your raise proposal, privately

You can’t just go straight to the boss room, and ask for a raise. There is an unwritten manner about it. At least, schedule a meeting for you and your boss to talk about your ‘career growth’. It will not leave your boss confused with your sudden raise proposal.

When the meeting occurs, you need to strengthen your pitch. Tell the case of why you should be an exception in the company to get a raise at this moment. Focus on explaining the results you have achieved for the company.

A good pitch is mostly research-based. Your boss should understand how valuable you are, but it is not a self-acclaimed one. Also, no need to threaten your boss that you will leave the company if you don’t get the salary that you deserve.

If you are not sure about your pitch, you can always practise first with a friend who can be a tough negotiator. That way, your pitch and negotiation are going to be better.

3. Dig other perks and benefits

It might be the time of high turnover, or your company is not doing very well at the moment. But you can always ask for other options, such as incentive compensation, stock options, education benefits. Even more personal days and extra vacation days are attractive. Just ask for it.

Bottom line

A well-deserved raise also needs a right approach to your boss. No bad timing as well. It also depends on your contributions to the company. Showcase your accomplishments, and if those are not good enough, maybe you need to step up your game to get a raise.

Bessie is a freelance writer and has 10 years of HR experience. She is currently a Regional HR Business Partner with a US MNC. 
One of the common questions that you can expect during a job interview is the salary question. Employers will usually ask about your current salary and expected salary for the role to assess your suitability. Some of you may find it rather uncomfortable to disclose your expected salary since you are unsure of the chances of securing the role. On the other hand, some of you are perfectly comfortable declaring that you are expecting a minimum of 20% increase from your base salary.
What is the right way to give to an employer so as to ensure that you are not giving the impression that salary is the main factor for applying the job? Under such a situation, below are some suggestions on how you can handle this tough question.

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Do your research

Before you attend the interview, it will be useful to research on the average market pay of the applied position. Several big recruitment agencies publish such salary information on an annual basis and are available to public on their website. Jobiness.sg is also a good resource whereby you can review the available salary data submitted by employees in various companies. Such information will provide you with an estimated range that you can expect for similar position. However, do bear in mind that salary ranges in companies and industries differ significantly. Hence, you should only use these information as a guide in preparation for the interview.

View Salary Data of 1000s of Jobs in Singapore

Negotiable

The term “negotiable” is usually the easiest solution when handling a salary question. Most interviewers tend to probe further in order to understand your expectation. If you are really unsure of how you are expecting, decide on a range that you are looking at. For instance, you could tell the interviewer that you are looking at a 10% to 15% increase, but you are willing to negotiate based on the salary range for this position.



READ ALSO: How Companies Determine Salaries for New Employees



Declare your minimum expectation

If you have in mind the least amount that you can accept for the role, do inform the interviewer of that minimum expectation. This is especially applicable for candidates who are considering a career switch. With no relevant experience in the new role and industry, you may not receive the same or higher salary as your current role. While considering the satisfaction that you can expect in the new role, it is also realistic to consider the lowest amount that could support your current lifestyle. As an Engineer, you may be earning a basic salary of $4000 while career switch may mean a reduction at least $1000. Do consider if the reduction is an amount that you are able to accept. You should be open to the interviewer and tell him or her that you are willing to accept a pay cut but $3,500 may be the minimum that you will consider.

You are strongly discouraged to tell the interviewer that you are willing to negotiate when you are not. The interviewer will be able to determine if they should continue with your candidacy if your expectation exceeds the salary range. In that way, it will save time and effort for both the company and yourself.

State your actual expectation
You may be one of those candidates who decide on a job solely based on the offered salary. There is nothing wrong with that but it is advisable to discuss that openly during the interview. If the interviewer is aware that you will not consider a role unless there is a 20% increase, it will help them to decide if they will like to continue with your candidacy based on your relevant experiences, job fit and internal salary structure and equity. Interviewers have met many candidates who tell them that they are willing to negotiate on the offered salary. However, when the job offer is presented, candidates turn it down immediately with the reason that the offered salary is less than the amount that they are expecting. That could set a very negative impression of you as a candidate. If you are attending interviews in the same industry, don’t be surprised when word gets around as the people within do know each other.

READ ALSO: Questions to Ask at the End of the Job Interview 

On a closing note, regardless of whether your interview is from the Human Resource or the hiring manager himself/herself, the same method applies when answering the salary question. Another mistake that candidates make when handling salary questions is asking too many questions in return. Examples of these questions include – “how much will you pay me for this role”; “what is the salary range for this position”; “what other monetary allowances can I expect”. These questions are internally sensitive and should be avoided until the advanced stage of the interview process when you are confident that you will be offered the job. Otherwise, these questions may bring down your overall interview scores.



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Photo Credit: Wetfeet