Ask a Recruiter: 6 Rules on How to Talk About Your Salary Expectations

Why is salary talk such a tricky subject that requires separate articles and tips from experts? Blame it on money culture or upbringing, but talking about money scares many applicants. You might be afraid that the amount you ask for is too low or too high. No surprise that you’d like to avoid that talk. Regardless of the positions you’re applying for, knowing how much your services cost is essential.

Check the article below on how to finally stop being afraid of the money talk and state your value.

Evaluate the Entire Compensation Package

This step is simple. At first sight, some salaries might seem low, while the entire company proposal will sound like a promising experience. You might visit and get a bot-beating resume to find a better-paying job. But, before you do it, ask a recruiter about the company’s employee benefits and job opportunities. If there is a high chance for rapid career growth, then there is a high chance for a double salary later. The key is to learn the career opportunities before you reject a proposition with a low wage.

On the other hand, a dream job with a top salary won’t keep you away from toxic culture and long working hours. Hence, stay mindful and focus on the whole picture rather than the salary itself.

Check the Market

How much would other companies pay for your services? Let’s say you’re an aspiring freelancer. In this case, check renowned freelance platforms like Upwork or PeoplePerHour. Find specialists with similar job experiences and qualifications to yours. Check their work samples and rates. Compare your skills to theirs. If both skills and years of experience are identical to yours, feel free to name the same rate as theirs during your job interview with the potential client.

Another option is to ask other job seekers who have been in your industry long enough. They will surely know how rates and salaries have changed over time. Also, remember that salaries for the same jobs will differ depending on the city and state.

Follow Job Interview Ethics

If the recruiter has contacted you by phone, prioritizing your salary question is a bad idea. They still know nothing about your personality or your skills. You might bring value to the company, but asking about money gives a wrong impression.

We advise you to raise the salary question after the recruiter learns more about your skills, experience, and education. In other words, you should gain the recruiter’s trust before you mention the money subject. The second interview stage is the ideal time to ask a recruiter about your salary when you’ve already showcased professionalism and discussed all questions.

Check the Company’s Reputation

The best tip here is to check the company’s reputation before applying. Some companies might have a toxic culture, underpaying their employees and disrespecting them overall. We advise you to check reviews on independent platforms from people who have worked for your chosen employers. Please pay special attention to negative reviews since they tell interesting stories.

Stay Confident During the Negotiation Process

So, you’ve determined the average salary for your work performance. How to tell the final number to the recruiter?

  • Stay honest. Tell the hiring manager that the number you’ve stated is based on the research you’ve done regarding the average salary in the industry;
  • Add proof. Mention the previous companies you’ve worked for. Tell the recruiter how much you were paid there. The key is to be realistic and not lie about the number of money signs. The recruiter can easily organize a background check and find your dishonesty;
  • Don’t fall victim to empty promises. Some companies will tell you your salary will progress from the lowest to the highest in a few months. While this can be true, a decent employer will propose an average salary as a starting point. Be cautious if the starting point is much lower than the industry average.

Ask a Recruiter about Law Aspects

Before accepting the job offer, you should check the salary number on paper—namely, your job contract, where all requirements and obligations are documented. Then, ensure the number you’ve agreed on matches the number stated in the official agreement.

Additionally, ask the company’s recruiter about deadlines and other salary-related details before you set a deal.

Final Thoughts

Your salary is one of the core factors influencing your decision on accepting or rejecting the job offer. Before you name any number, research salary expectations in your industry, city, or state. Check the company’s reviews and ask the recruiter about career opportunities and culture once you start having second thoughts.

We hope the article helped you solve your ‘money problem.’ Good luck!