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how to negotiate salary

 
Greenhorn
Posts: 12
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Hi all,
I got a job with a pay 35% lower than my last salary . I take the job because I want to get experience in their industry and also they promise in the next couple month I will be doing more challenging work, more into software analysis & design.
I understand that the salary for that role and responsibilities should be higher than I've got now, even higher than my last salary. So, my question is how I negotiate to get salary that reasonable enough with my role. If I see the market with the same role, the salary will be 100% higher than my current salary. So..I don't think my company will adjust that much salary. I will be pleased if the salary at least the same as my last salary, eventhough my job now has more responsibilities and demanding than before.
I'm very bad in negotiating a salary, especially if I'm looking forward to get that challenging project. Please give me some advice so I can get a reasonable salary wihout being so pushy.

Thanks a lot,
 
Ranch Hand
Posts: 503
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Rachel:
- I would go to the bookstore and look at some of the books on negotiation.
- While compensation negotiation is not by expertise, I would think the following items would apply:
1. Make a list of your strengths (skills).
2. Make a list (a paragraph or two for each item), of your contributions to the company.
3. List any additional education, classes, certifications that you have obtained since employment with current company.
4. List any extra activities that you have done for company. Are you working 60 hours a week. Did you come in and work extra hours ("crunch time") in order to meet a deadline.
5. If you have met all deadlines - show this.
6. Can you show how you have exceeded expectations - if so, write this down.
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I would believe that you would approach negotiating much like you would approach an interview.
You need to be prepared.
Outline your approach. Do some research at library or bookstore as to some possible techniques to do this.
Do a 1 or 2 page summary of the above items (so you can present it to manager - or refer to it at your meeting).
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Is comapny making $$ - and showing a profit $$$ - use that in your defense.
If company is having rough time of it - then they may not have resources (or will use it as an excuse).

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If manager says no. Then you make a deadline to talk with him/her in 30 days again. If after 30 days, no action. Then take it to the higher ups in the company.
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That's how I would approach the situation. Again, others may have different opinions.
I am just happy that I have a job 6 months after I start. Which hasn't been the case in the last 3 gigs I'v done. My reason for not having good salary negotiating experience.
And yes, it's Saturday (May 26th) and I am in by cubicle - still trying to get code to run on AS400. Actually, it's running - but finding tons of errors. Gotta love programming without design.
John Coxey
(jpcoxey@aol.com)
 
Ranch Hand
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Hi Rachel,
Correct me if I am off the tangent. You are at somewhere in the crest of the paid rate and you want to move up to the peak given the scenario that you are already in the company.
There are several ways. But first the upcoming project is handed down to you or is it created/proposed by you? If you create the project, then the salary negotiation is easier than handed down. But remember the industry paid rate only served as a reference not a yard stick. Each company operates differently.
Did you have the company financial statement? Did you ask your colleagues about the salary increase percentage overall? Are you in the mainstream company or ethnic company? What is the company management style - micro or macro? What did your manager said about your coding logic? What is the volume, the size of the project? What is your role in the project? What is the business model company operated on such as RUP, XP, SCRUM, etc? Do you understand the organization operations to a tee to the point that you could spot the loopholes if requested? I think the term "rancher" called onion layers. You need to know all the layers. But perfectly know one layer still good.
After you have all the puzzles piece together, then send an email to your manager ask for a private meeting over a salary increase issue. All managers happy to respond. But the majority will delay a raise execution time. You then friendly remind him/her over the unfinish issue right after weekly department meeting, when you bump into each others at the hallways. Make a friendly comment about the issue to your executive when you bump into the hallways. Make a phone call to remind your manager. This time the manager will finish the issue because suddenly he/she has the budget. Make sure you have the documents about the salary issue and the project status on hand. Just continue the meeting because both of you already know each others very much at this state in term of project wise and your career wise with the company. If you still not happy with the raise percentage, fire an email to your executive and cc the manager.
Cheers,
MCao
 
Rachel Smith
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thank you guys for your advises.
I'm just starting this job last month and the company is a small but growing. It's a private company, and I don't know yet how much their profit.
The project is proposed by them and eventhough I'm new in designing and leading a project, but I have the skills required. My past salary was average for a programmer, and in this current job the salary is below that. I'm planning to wait until I'm doing the project, and hopefully they adjust the salary.
If not, I probably ask them to change my status to a self employee. I really want to work on this project and if I'm a self employee, I don't mind to get low salary because I'll consider that as an investment. I invest my time and skill to get more experience in software design. So..my next question..how I tell them about this.
Thanks again guys..
 
Matt Cao
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Hi Rachel,
One month is early to tell what kind of beast you are dealing with. Wait until the project started is also a valid point because you have the skills but you need to prove it to this company. It also gives you time to get to know everyone in the company specially your managers. Get acquaintance with the executives. But don't wait too long as you know the majority companies set monetary compensation based on the previous ones.
Self-employee, are you the veteran in the field? Do you have the company in the palm of your hand? What I meant is you know something that nobody in the company know about. Do you have another project on the side?
Practice your salary negotiation first, it should be easy because the company is a small. The raise percentage could be small or could be huge depended on how worthy you are to the company. The benefit of working with small company is you learn everything about the company and its contact sources. Try and try to obtain the financial statement through your manager, I think the manager happy to share with you once you two are familiar with each others. It will serve you more than one ways.
-- What percent of paid increase is considered justify.
-- Your solutions for the project will least cost the company but yet you still comfortable to work with.
At least those twos I used for my own.
You will know when is the time for you to become self-employee/consultant.
Cheers,
MCao
 
Sheriff
Posts: 6037
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I wrote something here that might help. I also recommend the book "Getting to Yes."
--Mark
 
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