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How to Negotiate a Job Offer Effectively

Careers Advice from CV-Library

If you’ve been offered a job, congratulations may be in order. But, the journey to employment isn’t over yet. Especially as there’s the opportunity to negotiate a job offer if you want to.

Maybe the new employer isn’t offering as high a salary as you were hoping for. Or perhaps the benefits package in your existing role is a lot better.

Either way, it’s important to know that job hunters hold the power in the current market. And in some cases, the employer may be able to pull some strings to meet your needs.

But before you give it a go, it’s a good idea to practice and perfect your techniques to help you become a master of negotiation.

And that’s where we come in to help! This guide offers you tips and advice to help you negotiate a job offer effectively.

Before you dive in…

Before you begin your negotiations, it’s important to remember that there’s a difference between negotiating on the job offer as a whole and the salary. So, be sure to consider the whole package.

After all, it’s easy to fixate on money. But this isn’t the be all and end all of job satisfaction. In fact, there are a number of other areas that will make the job enjoyable, such as:

  • Workplace perks
  • Flexible hours
  • Holiday pay
  • Responsibilities
  • Training and promotion opportunities

Alongside this, if you’re going for a job in sales there may be other factors to consider, such as commission. So, try and pick out the ones that mean the most to you. Then, decide the minimum you’ll accept. This way, you can pick your battles wisely when the time comes.

The point of negotiating your offer is that both parties get a chance to work out what they can acceptably give or take; and this could mean you aren’t able to secure everything you’ve requested.

Be realistic

Alongside this, it’s important to be realistic when you negotiate a job offer. Sure, the employer wants to employ you now. But you don’t want to put them off by coming across as greedy and asking for too much.

Do your research beforehand and get a good idea of what you’re worth. Look into similar roles and levels of experience to decide what you can reasonably ask for.

Be wary that making salary demands way above your worth could make you look overly ambitious or simply clueless. Plus, it will put more pressure on you to perform at your very best when you do join the business.

Prepare and practise your pitch

You can’t expect an employer to offer you the best package right away. For that reason, you need to explain why you deserve the salary or benefits you’ve asked for.

The best way to do this is by preparing examples which demonstrate your success at previous employers. Use statistics to bring these to life and show that you’re worth the investment.

Alongside this, practice how you’ll say this out loud. If you want to negotiate, you’ll need to come across as calm, confident and collected. We’ll touch on that in more detail below.

When it’s time to negotiate a job offer…

Rather than negotiating each part of the offer individually, it’s a good idea to discuss it all at once. After all, if you raise an issue with the salary and they come back with a counter offer, you don’t want to then say ‘oh, and there’s this… and this…’

Employers will quickly lose patience if you keep coming back to them with more and more demands. Plus, it may come across like you’re putting off accepting the offer.

Sure, addressing all your issues at the beginning might feel like you’ve made a lot of requests in one go. But at least this gives the employer a chance to meet you half way.

Be likeable

When you negotiate a job offer, don’t underestimate the power of likeability. Hopefully, you gave off a good impression in your interview. Well, just as you did then, you need to project your best self.

So, avoid going in all guns blazing. Saying ‘I’m really disappointed in the offer and think I’m worth more’ won’t cut it. Instead try ‘I’m so happy for the opportunity, but given the salary I’m currently on I was hoping that the pay would be higher?’

If they like you, they’re more likely to be flexible when considering your requests.

Be confident

Job negotiations can feel awkward. But you need to be confident; even if you have to fake it! Don’t apologise for negotiating; you have the right to do so! Plus, employers want to see that you’re serious about your requests and that you’re willing to go after what you want.

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