PRO-TIPS - How to Negotiate Salary During an Interview


Research has showed us that changing job usually equates to an up to 15% pay rise, however whether you're discussing an increase in your existing job or a new one, negotiation and timing are key.

Timing is essential - How to delay the discussion

Have you ever struggled to ask for the salary range whilst filling out an application for a job? A higher or lower number than expected significantly affects the way you view an opportunity. Pamela Skillings, the founder of interview training site The Big Interview suggests that you should delay the time of discussing salary as late as possible and only bring up the subject when you know the interviewer is satisfied with you, at which point you'll be in a much stronger position to negotiate a better salary.

Similarly, it's important that interviewers or potential employers don't find your expected salary range before the interview process is complete. But how can you delay this conversation during the interview process? Tim Lo, the founder of [an American job seeking YourNextJump] states that a good way to frame a response to HR is: "I would like to see if I am a good fit to your company and if we can bring values to each other, before we discuss this matter". Some companies do filter out applicants who don't provide a salary expectation from the outset but this is rare, should HR insist on a number, you should be strategic in your response.

How much should you ask for?

Bozoma Saint John, Chief Brand Officer at Uber suggests that it's better to quote it high than low, as it's important to leave some room for negotiation.

"Don't pluck a number out of thing air", Saint John says. What's most important is to be well prepared, gather as much information as possible and build an understanding of the industry. Although Job ads may state the salary range, the information you'll find from colleagues, industry and comparison platforms is far more valuable when negotiating.

If the proposed salary is lower than you expected, Skillings suggests that you should be straight forward and list your career highlights, achievements and experience to demonstrate that your value is higher.

Should you accept a salary that's below your expectation?

It can be frustrating to go through numerous rounds of interviews successfully only to be disappointed by the salary offered at the end. Tim Lo suggests you should maintain an aggressive strategy on salary negotiation if you get to this point, stating "When the company gives you an offer, they have already invested a significant amount of effort facilitating your employment, so a small increase usually isn't a big deal for them, for the applicant it's extremely important."

If the company doesn't budge on the number offered, Skilling suggests asking for the company to do a performance review within the next 3-6 months, providing an opportunity for them to adjust your salary or perks in the near future.

Naomi Chan

Career Coach and professional career hacker at Team Vanna

2 min read

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