A challenging phase of finding a job in Singapore is salary negotiation. Talking about how much you’re worth and how much you expect to be paid for the particular position can sometimes be an uncomfortable process. Understanding how best to negotiate salary only improves with time and experience. Meanwhile, you can get a head start by reading these essential negotiating skills to end up with a better take home pay at the end of the day.
Research Salary Benchmarks
Understanding how companies benchmark salaries for different positions is your first step to an effective salary negotiation. Most employers use the following guidelines when deciding how much they’re willing to pay for the position:
• Average salary offered by companies operating in the same industry • Average salary based on the level of experience and education • Average salary offered to professionals in the industry within the city/state/country
With this information, you will have a clear idea of how much you should get for agreeing to do the job. The knowledge will also provide you with valuable insights so you can set a realistic salary expectation.
Reserve Salary Talks Until You Establish Your Qualifications
Never talk about salary expectations or proceed to salary negotiation without first establishing your qualifications. This is true even if it’s employer-initiated. Deftly navigate the discussion to topics that will allow you to highlight why you are the right candidate for the position. Once the employer starts showing signs of how you’re perfect for the company and the job vacancy, you will be in a better position to negotiate for the salary you have in mind.
Talk About Performance-Based Incentives
In situations where you get a low-ball offer from a company you really like, don’t hesitate to talk about possible performance-based incentives. Discuss about measurable results that are beneficial for both you and the company. If they agree with your suggestion, make sure the discussion is documented in writing so you won’t have any problem getting them to honor their side of the bargain. In some industries it is not uncommon to hear of employees asking for a salary review after 6 months on the job in exchange for the employee accepting the initial low-ball offer. Like the “try before you buy” deals you see on TV, this sometimes results in a win-win. If you prove, during that period, that your are truly as good as you say you are then the company will be willing to retain you by offering you more. In such cases it is important that you make the employer understand that you are accepting an offer that is lower than you would normally consider because you think there is a good opportunity for you to prove your worth and revisit the salary discussion at a later stage.
Be Open to Non-Monetary Incentives
Another great way to close the gap between your expected salary and the employer’s exact offer is to be open to non-monetary incentives. Whether it’s an additional paid time off, free meals, or discounts on gym memberships, be ready to think about these perks and weigh your options. More often than not, non-cash incentives are more effective in bridging the difference between your asking price the offered compensation package.
Dress and act the part
Finally, if you want to be seen as deserving of more then dress and act the part. A good suit, good shoes and a decent watch signal a sense of high self-worth and high personal standards to the employer. They communicate that you are on your way to big things and are worth more. This will set you apart from less well-dressed candidates. Think of the way salesmen upsell you on cars or motorbikes. By adding leather seats to a base model car or sports stripes to a base model motorbike it is suddenly worth 10% more.
Salary negotiation tops the list of topics veteran and newbie job seekers alike feel uncomfortable talking about. It takes a lot of practice to hone your negotiation skill to the point where it does not make you feel nervous or apprehensive talking about it. At the end of the day, this is one of, if not the most important part of the job search process so make sure to think about the offer carefully before signing the dotted line.
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