In some cultures, bargaining is the norm, in some it’s just not. When you are looking at buying or selling something you always feel the need to get it/sell it at a better price. The discussion then takes place and a price is agreed upon. If both parties as not satisfied with the negotiation, the deal will not happen.
It is the same when you are negotiating your salary with an employer. I know that in some cases you really do not care about the salary as you have the need or urgency to leave and start over BUT you cannot just accept the first offer that comes your way. When you’re negotiating your salary with a future employer, do you know what you’re doing? Do you have any idea of what you’re truly worth?
How and where do I find out my worth?
To be good at salary negotiation, you must know what a good offer looks like. To do this you must do some research in the current market and make sure that you will be able to afford your new lifestyle in NZ. First, research your fair market value. One way to do this is by using PayScale. You can also ask recruiters and the relevant industries sites in NZ to get a better idea of what others in similar positions are earning.
Networking is always a good way to get current information. There is almost no better way to assess how you’re doing than to talk with professionals in similar fields. Identify people who have the same position you have or want. Connect with other job seekers on the different immigration platforms/pages and compare duties and responsibilities, etc.
When you are networking, don’t ask people what they make and expect a civil answer. Instead, ask, “Does this range sound right for this kind of job in this kind of company?” Chances are they’ll reply either, “Wow! Where do you work, and how can I join you?” or “Well, that seems low for someone with your experience and level of responsibility.” When you combine their comments with the salary information you already have, you’ll have a better idea of how you want to approach your salary offer.
How much to ask for
Many companies have salary structures for their organizations. Each has a range in mind for any specific job. If you have a target salary within a realistic range, you’ll negotiate from a stronger position.
Rules for Negotiating Your Salary
- Don’t be greedy. Seek a win-win agreement with a new employer. This cements good relations for you and the interviewer and could save you from a lost offer if you hold out for the maximum.
- When an employer asks for your salary requirements in an ad or on a job application, indicate that you are negotiable. If you’re asked to provide current salary, respond with, “Will discuss during interview’ if you have a choice as many sites need the information to be able to submit your documents.
- Never initiate salary discussions in an interview. Wait for the interviewer to bring the subject up, even if it’s postponed to a second interview.
- Avoid explicit comparisons to your current salary. You’re negotiating the strengths you’ll bring to the new position, not past salary.
- Always assume the offer is negotiable.
- Discuss benefits separately from salary. Your list of benefits can include insurance, tuition reimbursement, relocation payments, bonuses and outplacement upon termination.
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