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How to Negotiate Your Salary in a Tough Market


Unemployment is down, but the market is still tight. It’s understandable for new hires to feel so happy to have a job, that they’re reluctant to push for more money. Here’s why you should still negotiate your salary — and how to do it.

“Employers typically go into an offer anticipating the candidate will come back asking for more, so I would encourage people to negotiate if they have received an offer that is below their expectations,” says Tracy Burns, chief executive officer of the Concord-based Northeast Human Resources Association, in an interview with the Boston Globe’s Miss Conduct, Robin Abrahams. “Realistically, everything is up for negotiation, but you can’t be obnoxious about it?–?’You just gave me a job, and now I’m asking for 10 other things.'”

The key to a successful negotiation is to do your homework, Burns says, namechecking as a good place to start salary research.

Of course, no matter how persuasive and informed you are, sometimes employers are not going to budge on salary. If that’s the case, come prepared with other things that would make up the difference to you, such as a flexible schedule, more vacation time, or other benefits.

Do You Know What You're Worth?

Abrahams also suggests asking your brand-new boss for a list of goals for the first year, to make sure you’re getting started by heading in the right direction. That way, you’ll be in a better spot to ask for a raise at your next review.

Tell Us What You Think

We want to hear from you! Have you negotiated your salary? Leave a comment or join the discussion on Twitter, using the hashtag #MakeItHappen.

More from PayScale

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PayScale: Helping You Negotiate Your Salary, One #PayChat at a Time.


(Photo Credit: 401(k) 2013/Flickr)

Jen Hubley Luckwaldt
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