Negotiating a salary package may seem like a faux pas, especially in tough economic times. Workers often feel selfish or overreaching when considering whether or not to negotiate pay. However, Forbes Magazine points out that a job offer means the company considers you the most qualified person for the position. Most employers do not want to repeat the interviewing process and actually appreciate the confidence and savvy needed to negotiate salary.
Gather as much information about salary as you can prior to the interview and salary negotiation. Speak with employees in similar job positions to gauge the market and to arm yourself with numbers that justify the salary you want.
Do not discuss your past salaries. According to Forbes, your past salary has no relevance to your new job; deflect the question if possible. Forbes suggests using an answer such as “At this time I’m most interested in determining if I’m the right person for the job,” to take attention away from past salary and focus on how you fit with the company.
Ask the employer about the pay scale, but avoid entering into discussions about salary until you have been offered the job. Once you know the pay scale, you can gauge where the bottom line is for the employer.
Discuss factors that have an impact on your worth. According to the Washington Post, skills, experience and education are major factors. In addition, consider what you bring to the company, the company's size and the nature of the position. The more responsibility you have typically warrants a higher salary range.
Speak about giving and taking benefits to increase or decrease the salary amount. If you are offered a lower salary than expected, and salary is not negotiable, ask about working in more benefits or perks to make the job more lucrative. To earn a higher salary, consider giving up benefits, such as vacation time, in place for more money.