New Job - Negotiating a Salary

It is far easier negotiating a salary when you are being offered a job, compared to trying to get a salary increase in an existing job, however the negotiations should follow rather the same 'rules of thumb', or rather the same 'process'.

Once you have done your research and looked into the job that suits you perfectly, and of course you have established what personal salary you want to achieve, don't try to hurry things by going straight in with questions relating to remuneration should you be offered the job.

Ensure you have worked out everything including your salary and additional benefits - the whole package. That will give you a final figure and, if you expect your potential employer to offer you more than your current remuneration, add a little to that final figure and use it at the salary negotiating stage - don't overlook the important bits like relocation expenses or extra travel costs.

Negotiating Salary at Your Interview

Typically, in a first interview salary figures may be discussed. Allow the interviewer tell you what salary they are expecting to pay and for any new job opening use your negotiation skills and also the information you have gathered regarding market and personal values. It may that your interviewer asks you what salary figure you are seeking, this is a good time to turn the tables and question what kind of package they had in mind so that you can use their figures as a base to work on.

Sell Yourself

But don't sell yourself short, if you believe that you are worth more than they are offering, then sell it to them; make sure your potential employer knows just how much you can assist their business, what kind of impact you will have (within your area of expertise) as well as any inside knowledge on their competition. Also make sure you discuss what either side can compromise on for you to accept the job (a couple of hours here and there, can you offer more in the way of flexibility, extra holiday, private health care, expense accounts etc).

Don't forget, there is probably competition for this job and potentially lots of other job hunters being considered. It may just be that you are the only suitable candidate for the role and the employer really wants to employ you, or it may well be there is someone they would like to take on for less money but that person has just as good a portfolio as you so negotiating a salary at interview stage can be a minefield, yet play it right and don't get caught up too much on salary and package alone - but do evaluate the new job and what they are offering.

If you can get lots out of this job and it's the only or best way to progress your career, you may decide to accept the job offer for less than you hoped for. In this case, try suggesting putting into place a guarantee that your salary will be increased after an interim period, putting extra efforts into your new job and perhaps offering more flexibility for the first few months.


Whichever way it works for you, conducting negotiation for a salary in a new job may or may not go your way. Either way, your employer may well be very impressed with your negotiating skills!

Whatever package and final agreements have been guaranteed, ensure that this is received in writing (usually in the offer letter) and ensure you keep your side of the bargain too - if you promised that putting in the extra effort was not a problem, then stick to it to help your argument should that raise not come when agreed.

Negotiating a salary is not the easiest thing to do, but it can help you reap rewards in the longer term if it doesn't work out at this interview.

Lisette Howlett is an HR consultant who runs a successful HR Consultancy and a recruitment website is a unique online community, recruitment agency information source and directory for all things to do with recruitment and working bringing together job seekers, employers, recruiters and other specialists within the recruitment industry. It has recruiter rankings, a knowledge centre, a recruitment blog and a Recruitment and Careers Forum.

Published At: New Job - Negotiating a Salary