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Here’s how to ask about salary in your next interview

by Heat Recruitment

Knowing how to ask about salary in your next job interview is a vital skill, one that’s easily learnt.

It sounds like a perfect opportunity. Judging by the job spec and the conversations you’ve had with the company so far, this could be the interview that sees you secure the role you’ve been waiting for.

There’s just one problem: you’re still feeling stuck about how to ask about salary.

While money isn’t everything, there’s no denying it can be make or break when it comes to job opportunities. At some point in the interview process, the hiring manager will seek to determine how much it will cost to employ you. When they do, keeping the following tips in mind will help you in securing the salary you are worth for the job you desire:

Always do your homework in advance

Rare is it for employers to state their exact budget for a particular role in a job description – doing so could make them more vulnerable to competition within the industry and give them less negotiating power. Try coming to the interview armed with knowledge acquired from sites such as LinkedIn and Glassdoor on the salary range of current and former employees at the company or leverage career tools like the Heat Recruitment Salary Survey. In doing so you can – to a certain extent – pre-empt the average budget they are prepared to allocate for a candidate with your level of experience.

Wait for the right moment

Every candidate at some point in their career will face the challenge of how to ask about salary. Although the chance to secure a more competitive salary might be a key motivator in your search for a new job, discussing compensation straight off the bat or including expectations within your CV or cover letter could give the impression that money is your biggest motivator over opportunity and experience. If they don’t ask within the first interview, wait until they have expressed interest in you as a candidate to raise the subject.

Give a range rather than an exact

If the hiring manager presses you on salary expectations, avoid giving a specific figure. After all, you don’t want to price yourself out, but you don’t want to undercut yourself either. By telling them your current salary to the penny, you lose all negotiating power. Instead, you should provide a fair range based on your research, requirements and individual priorities. No matter the seniority or skill-level required for the role, try to frame your answer around what is fair and competitive.

Know what you’re worth and know what you want

Understanding your value in light of the skillset you offer a business and the demand for these skills in the market is crucial in ensuring you are fairly compensated in your new role. Before you enter into salary negotiations, think holistically about your current earnings, bonuses and benefits package and ask yourself what’s missing. What salary would convince you to jump ship? Are there any particular perks that interest you? When you know what you’re worth to an employer, you can make realistic demands and secure the salary you desire.

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