career fair attendees

Below is a brief talk with Katie Snapp (below), Career Coach with the university Career Center, regarding a workshop on salary negotiation that has since been postponed. 

It can be a roller coaster with accepting a position, then trying to determine your salary. Where or how do you suggest to get started? advisor smiling

The best thing to do is understand the market value of the position you have applied for. But what does that even mean, market value? It's one of those words professionals like to throw around but never actually explain. The market value, in terms of jobs, is an estimation of how much you should be earning based on job title, years of experience, skills, and location in relation to what others are making around the country: also known as national salary data filtered by your qualifications.

The simplest way to do this is through Here you can enter all of that information and it will give you that salary data and you can filter through said qualifications and it will spit out a salary for you that aligns with market value so you can have realistic expectations and not sell yourself short.

Is there a single, common misconception you hear about salary negotiation? 

That if you decide to negotiate, an employer can rescind an offer. False. They want this process to be done just as much as you do so they will do everything in their power to find a way to get you to accept the position. You may not get everything that you want, but if you don't ask there's no way you'll even get close.

Are there things besides salary to consider in an offer? 

Benefits. Benefits. And Benefits. Did you know they're negotiable? There's a fun fact for you! You may find yourself in a situation where an employer is lagging in salary but their benefits are amazing - in the long run you could be taking home more money with that job than a higher paying one. Have a long commute? Negotiate working remotely. Use public transit? See if they offer transportation benefits. Want to get another degree? See if they have tuition assistance. There are a ton of benefits that you can look into and negotiate if there is not a lot of wiggle room when it comes to salary.

Engineers like numbers. What are some data points you reference when coaching about negotiating salary? 

As mentioned before, is great. Also, look into the Occupational Outlook Handbook - this is where most of that data comes from. It can be a little overwhelming so definitely feel free to schedule an appointment with Mike, Leslie, or myself via Handshake!

Salary negotiation workshop now available online

Check out Katie's workshop on how to make the most of your offer negotiation.