The days when people worked at one company for the majority of their working life are gone. Today, the average person changes jobs and companies between ten and fifteen times. This means that most people conduct a new job search every few years. Searching for a job can often be a time consuming and long process. You should be prepared that it may take 3 – 6 months to actually reach the job offer stage, from the time you submit a resume for consideration. Once you receive a job offer, one key task remains–negotiating the very best terms for the position you have been offered.
Once you receive a written job offer, you should certainly express enthusiasm and gratitude! However, you should not just say ‘yes’ immediately. Instead, ask for some time to review the offer terms and components . Statistics show that almost everyone negotiates at least 1 or 2 terms of their job offer. Although, many people fear that they will appear greedy and ungrateful if they ask for some modification to their job offer, often offers are constructed on the assumption that a negotiation will occur.
The following are some tips for an effective offer negotiation:
- Know your worth in the job marketplace – You should spend significant time conducting research to gain valuable salary and compensation information related to the position you have just been offered . There are many salary calculation tools and websites available to research average base salaries and salary ranges for similar jobs in your area, industry, and geography. Some of the websites that provide salary information include: salary.com, payscale.com, indeed.com, and glassdoor.com. It is important to remember that salary matters are not just for the present, but also for the future since pay increases are usually based on a percentage of prior salary.
- Conduct research on benefits and company perks: While salary is a key part of your job offer, often a lower salary than desired can be balanced by other perks, benefits, and privileges. For example, if your current vacation or Paid Time Off (PTO) is greater in your current position, you should request an even match of PTO. Other perks that you may want to ask for include the ability to work from home a few days a week and flex hours.
- Be Professional – When negotiating an offer, always assume a professional demeanor, be honest, and play fair. As long as you are courteous and ethical with your requests, it is likely that you may in fact be able to negotiate a terrific offer.
Despite the reasons why you have decided to make a job change, one thing remains constant, ensuring that you negotiate the best job offer possible is critical as the first step to ensure happiness and hopefully longevity in your next position.
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