I've already told you that you should ask for more when you're given a job offer, but I'm going to tell you again. This time, it's CareerJournal that . Here's why:
CareerBuilder.com's survey of 875 hiring managers revealed that about 60% leave room in the first offer for salary negotiations, 30% say their first offer is final, and 10% say it depends on the candidate.
Meanwhile, four out of five corporate recruiters said they are willing to negotiate compensation, according to a study conducted by the Society for Human Resource Management.
So somewhere in the 70% range (the majority by far) is the percentage of employers that can pay more if you deserve it, can make a case for it, and ask for it. And yet most candidates don't ask. They're turning down free money in my book.
But it's rather easy to be successful. All you need to do is:
Arm yourself with information. Research the company's pay scale, the job's fair market value, the industry average and the region you'll be working in.
Prove what you're worth. Employers are more likely to honor your requests for higher compensation if you can demonstrate why you deserve it. Highlight your unique skills, specific accomplishments or the revenue you'll generate. Make sure your references give you good reviews--employers rely on past peers and bosses when deciding on a higher salary.
In my career, I've always counter-offered. The reasons I've used to increase my compensation from the initial offer include the following:
1. The new city is more expensive to live in than the old one.
2. The total offer (when looking at 401k contributions and other benefits) isn't that much different than my current salary.
3. I have alternative offers worth more. (This is a GREAT position to be in -- two jobs you'd love to have getting into a bidding war.)
BTW, I don't really emphasize my skills and accomplishments at this point -- I've done that during the interview process.
Also remember that at this point, they've decided that they want you. Out of all the people they've interviewed, they selected you. And it's likely that they want/need you there asap (your new boss may be doing your job along with his -- and he may REALLY want you there), so you have a lot of negotiating power. If you ask for a fair bump based on reasonable conclusions, most companies (in the 70% range) will respond positively.
Why make such a big deal of the issue anyway? Because you have an advantage in maximizing your career earnings if you begin with a higher starting salary. You do even better if you get regular salary increases -- and one of those times when you can make better-than-average jumps in pay is when you are switching jobs. As such, don't settle for a lower-than-deserved salary or it will end up compounding against you throughout your working career.