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Football transfer season is in full swing! As we continue to speculate over the seemingly endless series of rumours, negotiations and deals, one cannot help but draw parallels which can be applied to the world of work.

The art of salary negotiation is a key career skill that will help you throughout your working life. Whether you’re looking for a new job or aspiring to move up within the ranks of your current organisation, we share our advice to increase your chance of scoring the starting salary or pay rise you deserve!

Negotiate your starting salary like a pro!

When it comes to your career, your question shouldn’t be, ‘What’s in it for me?; but rather ‘What do I have to offer in value?’ Because many of today’s savvy business leaders seek out employees who will grow with their organisations, coming across as entitled and more concerned about pay-check rather than the company’s purpose will certainly decrease your chance of sealing the deal!

However, that isn’t to say that you shouldn’t advocate for a starting salary that is reflective of your qualifications and experience. When mediating over initial salary, try these three tactics:

1. Know what you're potentially buying into

Get to know what the position entails and whether it’s a good match for you before delving into compensation. Ask lots of questions to find out whether the position aligns with your values, character, and skill set. Dig deep into the specifics of the role to create space for those transcendent and memorable interviews to occur. During your interview, use your personal strengths and what you know about the job to establish your worth. If you see areas in which you can excel and bring additional value to the role, your potential negotiating position strengthens.

2. Find the silver linings that lead to gold

Try to align your compensation with the overall performance of the company, especially if it’s a smaller company. That’ll be music to your potential employer’s ears and can lead to an early goal in the negotiation game. Much like football teams who win more matches in a tournament, find out whether you, too, will earn performance-based incentives. The best employees put themselves in a position to earn more through actions than initial agreements.

3. Assess emotional tolls as well as economic ones

Aim for a position in which your efforts can make a difference. Not only will it be more satisfying, but you can also earn the most income in the future by making a difference from within the firm to help it achieve higher goals. Before going into an interview, ask yourself how you can be of service to the company and its clients and how the company will help you serve your family. If the job is going to take you away from home for extended periods of time or you see the company being a place where you can grow for a long time, bring that up in negotiations.

On the other hand, if you're aiming for a salary increase from your current employer, try these top tips:

1. Research your market value

Negotiating a pay rise is primarily about your value. Get an idea of what you should be asking for by speaking to people who work similar roles to you within your company, in the same sector and in similar organisations. Talk to people you know well so that you're comfortable asking how much they currently get paid and how much they're planning to ask for at their next review. Also take a look at salary surveys and checkers, as well as speaking to recruiters.

2. Build and present your business case

You're going to need a water-tight business case and evidence of your skills. Record specific you things did and significant moments and events. Include examples of your work and projects you were on, how you work with different teams and your relationships with key people. When presenting your business case, highlight the successful projects you've been involved in. Draw attention to quantifiable data, such as figures and timeframes. Go over your track record in producing results and other stages of your work history that demonstrate your value. Be sure to point the decision-makers towards recommendations from colleagues and any supporting documentation.

3. Be ready for discussion and negotiation

Most importantly, be prepared to discuss your salary at the negotiating table, ensuring that you know what you deserve. Be clear with yourself on what your boundaries are regarding how much scope for flexibility you intend to allow or what you are willing to accept. Remember that you have the option to go back with a compromise and other suggestions. Think about a solution that could fit in well with your strategy. There may be different elements of your salary package that could be interchangeable or traded-off. Identify what these are so that you know what your options are.

And finally, don’t let the tactic of silence tempt you into speaking or committing yourself to an offer too early. Negotiation is about pacing. An appropriate response to the first offer might be, "Thanks for that, I'm going get to back to you on it".

Looking for a job? We can help!

Whether you're looking to kick-start your career, or just simply contemplating a job switch, give us a call! At Search, we recruit for a wide range of roles within a variety of sectors which you can view and apply for today!