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Salary conversation with potential new employer

(12 Posts)
OhNoMyCheds Sun 02-Feb-20 11:06:47

How the hell am I supposed to approach this?

I’m currently looking for a new role due to redundancy. I have always gone through agencies for previous jobs, but this time around my understanding of the industry I’m in and my network means I’m dealing directly with the hiring firms instead.

I’ve had a few chats on salary so far. The one that keeps playing on my mind went like this:
(For reference, the HR person had told me that the job was paying just £500p/a more than my current basic.
(Second interview, hiring manager): what salary would you like?
Me: I’m currently on £xxx, plus bonus of £xx but for the right company I could come down a bit if there’s a enough scope.
Her (kind of shrugged): well how much do you want?
Me: (adds a couple more thousand to current salary)
Her: cool.

And then we moved on with the interview and I’m now in the third stages.

But can other posters please share their experience here? I basically don’t want to price myself too low, look greedy, or price myself out of the running for positions... some genuine advice would be appreciated. Thanks!

user1493413286 Sun 02-Feb-20 11:13:10

I tend to say that “this” is what I’m currently being paid but based on my experience I would like this amount, normally a bit above what I’d be happy with. In my job money is normally discussed when you’re offered the job after the interview and I always do my research about the average salary in that area. Once I got what I asked for, once I got the same as what l was on before and took the job as it was still a step along my career path in terms of experience and most recently my boss met me half way which was the amount I was happy with.

PegasusReturns Sun 02-Feb-20 11:20:00

I would say “whilst it’s not just about the money I’m on Y and would need a significant uplift to move”

If you’re genuinely not worried about what you get paid add 10%. If you’re out of their range but like you they’ll interview you with a view to trying to persuade you to accept less.

BuzzShitbagBobbly Sun 02-Feb-20 11:43:14

You already told them you would potentially drop salary? shock

Yikes, well you are in a bit of a poor position to start with then, I'm afraid. Usually you go in with a "reach for the stars" request, without revealing current details, because they are not relevant.

e.g. "I'm looking for a package in the region of £42-50k" - which is both ambiguous and negotiable. You might end up with a 43k salary but significantly enhanced pension, leave, healthcare.

But, in your shoes, I would try and style it out, as if the earlier convos weren't had, or the HR person misunderstood your "total package" or range sought.

OhNoMyCheds Sun 02-Feb-20 12:29:03

@buzzshitbagbobbly - I know, I’m a complete amateur at this!

Great advice from you and previous posters though, thank you. Part of my issue is my current job isn’t really benchmarkable as it doesn’t exist outside my company so I am having to move into something different with my transferable skills. So I’m a little on the back foot instantly. Oh and I have really low self confidence so immediately believe people won’t pay me what I’m asking for!

BuzzShitbagBobbly Sun 02-Feb-20 12:52:01

Part of my issue is my current job isn’t really benchmarkable as it doesn’t exist outside my company so I am having to move into something different with my transferable skills

That is actually better than being in a role where pay grades are published and fixed grin You are forgetting that they don't know what you know! If they are at 3rd interview stage, you have a strong hand!
Practice your comment on range/package and bluff them out. It is hard because they have an aim to get you as cheap as they can and getting you to tell them your current salary is their biggest advantage. Have your reply fixed and ready to go.

(I once chanced my arm on a role that was advertised at 21k and I went in asking for 35k+ - I justified it with my experience, skills and the extra I'd bring to the role. I had to wait a good couple of days while they hashed it out behind the scenes but they eventually couldn't go higher than 28k - so even on an advertised salary they had room to move for a strong candidate.)

BuzzShitbagBobbly Sun 02-Feb-20 12:54:46

As I mentioned above, alternatives, if the actual salary is a sticking point can be just as valuable: ask for higher matched pension contribution level; paid for healthcare or dental, extra annual leave, guaranteed bonus, childcare vouchers, whf or flexi, free parking etc.

All stuff that helps and has a cost attached, but not one that sits on the salary line.

OhNoMyCheds Tue 04-Feb-20 11:26:48

Okay this is great advice, thank you.

On the “amount” if I named one, I think I’ve been saying 5% more than I’m on, but really I actually want 20% and I would be playing with 10-15%

You know, the main problem I guess is that I am surprised I’m worth any of these amounts, like I recently sent my CV to an potential employer and mentioned two positions I thought I would be good at, but they came back to me and suggested a more senior position that I flossed over on the website because I didn’t think I would be taken seriously applying for... I wish you could buy confidence.

OhNoMyCheds Tue 04-Feb-20 11:27:18

*OKAYISH/HAPPY not playing 🙄

BuzzShitbagBobbly Tue 04-Feb-20 12:06:30

You know, the main problem I guess is that I am surprised I’m worth any of these amounts

Imposter syndrome. We all get it to some degree, women hugely more so. The other day I found myself telling my manager to leave me off the list for pay rises if it meant others in the team would get their s approved. While I'll never say no to more money, part of that was because imposter syndrome was alive and kicking!

Of course it is 100x easier for me to sit here and glibly tell you what you should say, compared to when you are eyeballing the questioner in a silent room!

If it helps, write it down so you can literally read it off the page.

Reach for the stars and you might just get that 20%. If not, you have room to negotiate to the 15%.

CloudsCanLookLikeSheep Tue 11-Feb-20 18:27:11

Trouble is if you're being made redundant it's easy for new employers to offer low, especially if they think you are desperate. I once knew a manager say to me 'it's an increase on 0 so anything is a pay rise for her' when recruiting a candidate who was being made redundant.

MrsCollinssettled Tue 11-Feb-20 18:44:25

You'll never be in a stronger position with an employer than when you are being offered a job. Keep in mind how long it might take you to reach your desired salary if you settle for several thousand less then only get cost of living increases each year.

Most people seeking another job will be expecting to increase their salary. As long as you are not making excessive demands that are out of step with your peers, you should ask for more than you are prepared to accept. Let them negotiate and as pp's have said look at the whole package and what suits your circumstances best.

Don't undervalue yourself - do you really want to work for someone who sees you as the cheapest option? They need to demonstrate that they are worth working for too.

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