Saturday, February 24

Salary negotiation: Know your own market value and be prepared

It doesn’t matter whether it’s a job change, an interview or a new job: Salary negotiation is a sub-process of working life. But how much money can be asked for? And how do you convince your boss to dig deeper into your pockets? A first tip: A self-confident appearance puts negotiators in a relevant position to enforce their own salary expectations.

Find out your own market value

The implementation of a subsequent salary adjustment is usually more difficult than some employees might imagine, since a gradual increase in salary is often determined at the beginning of an employment relationship. For this reason, the salary negotiation in the job interview is all the more important in order to be able to start directly with the best possible salary.

The salary expectations often turn out to be a tightrope walk. Those who confront their superiors with disproportionately high demands right from the start may be classified as cheeky and arrogant, whereas applicants who ask for a very low starting salary may be annoyed afterwards if they are a few salary brackets below those of their colleagues.

This question is particularly thorny for newcomers to the profession, since in many cases they have a limited amount of work experience. However, various specialist magazines, job portals, professional associations or trade unions can be consulted and provide information on the current industry salaries. Employees who have been working for a long time can often fall back on their wealth of experience – based on previous job changes and the exchange with colleagues and acquaintances who are familiar with the industry.

The starting salary depends on that

In the case of career starters in particular, the first salary depends on the training completed and the qualifications obtained. In the later course of a career, on the other hand, what counts is the professional experience that has already been gained and the achievements made in working life. Employees should note, however, that there are not only industry-related but also regional differences in salary levels. The size of a company also plays an important role. According to the StepStone Salary Report 2020, employees at companies with at least 1,000 employees earn around 18 percent more than the overall average. According to StepStone, the gross average salary in Germany in 2020 is around 58,800 euros. Salaries are particularly high in the automotive, chemical, banking and pharmaceutical industries.

There are various individual factors that affect the size of the salary. The more professional experience, responsibility already borne and special knowledge such as foreign languages ​​and other further training an applicant can demonstrate, the more valuable he is for a company.

Salary negotiation in the job interview – that’s what matters

Detailed research and extensive preparation are important factors with regard to an upcoming salary negotiation. For this reason, every applicant should think in advance about where their personal pain threshold is and what room for negotiation is left. In some cases, it may also be helpful to address other benefits. For example, if it is foreseeable that there will no longer be any room for negotiation when it comes to the annual salary, applicants can steer the conversation to travel allowances, company cars or further training opportunities.

In order not to stagnate at one salary level in the future, salary increases can also be tied to certain goals such as sales figures, completed projects or the end of the probationary period. Employees should also have the date of the next salary negotiation confirmed in writing.

If problems arise during salary negotiations, open and honest communication is required. A reputable company should not automatically reject an applicant if they do not respond to the first offer that comes along. And despite existing statistics and salary comparisons, applicants should also retain a certain degree of flexibility, as these serve as a point of reference and are not set in stone. So how high the salary is in the end depends to a large extent on how well you can sell and present yourself.

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