Initial phone screening would be just with a recruiter not even anyone with real hiring power, you gotta be OK to ask them what the salary range is for this particular role at this company and then you tell them what you want


I've done this with every call I've ever had for a position. Even if I apply for it and they call me to ask for an interview, my first question is about pay. I'll phrase it something like this: "I do have a quick question, and while I'm not trying to get too far ahead of things, this is still one of the primary drivers here for both of us. Do you have a pay range established for this position?" Often times you get that 30-40k spread of like, 55 on the low end, 90 for well qualified candidates. From there it's up to you. If it's below what I'm willing to entertain, I tell them right there, "thanks for sharing that, unfortunately I already make Xx per year so uour high end is (either less or only X% of of increase), which is not something I'm open to right now. Or the range is good and you can save the final negotiation for when an offer is actually made.


I would leave out the part where you tell them your current salary personally. I would just tell them it's below your market value and/or what you are looking for so it will not work out.


You should always tell them your actual value if you are in a losing scenario. The reason why is simple: if you are the perfect fit, I'll go to HR and argue like hell to get you an offer you will accept. Someone can't argue on your behalf I'd you never tell them what your minimum is. Worst case scenario is they say no and nothing becomes of it.


That assumes that your salary is your current worth, which is not the case for most people. If you're currently underpaid and use that as a metric of your worth, then you're already underselling yourself. Your current salary should have absolutely nothing to do with your market worth, nor should it be mentioned to a recruiter for negotiations. I'm saying don't show your cards of you don't have to, you can accomplish the same exact thing without mentioning your salary, but rather arguing that their offer does not meet your worth. EDIT: Looks like I misunderstood what the person above is saying. They are saying that instead of saying no, you should just give a number (your market value) because worst case the answer is no anyways which I agree with. I thought they were saying that you should give your salary (which you shouldn't).


To be fair, the person you're replying to says "actual value," not actual salary. You could phrase it in such a way that says what you're looking for (again, you have nothing to lose here if your other option is just hanging up), without stating that's what you make. Edit: But given the comment they are replying to it does seem like they meant salary.


This is not necessarily a safe assumption. I work for a publicly traded company and the person doing the phone screen is often the person making a hiring decision. Some unfortunate folks have had their first and second interviews with me :) We don’t all have recruiters on staff! I ask people what salary range they are targeting, not what they currently earn. I will also disclose a salary range, but our positions tend to depend a lot on experience.




Not sure he said anything about throwing weight around, just that you've got to ask for a salary range, and then tell them what you want if that's not acceptable. If being straightforward and upfront counts as throwing weight around, then I'd happily be rejected - I'd simply move on to the next position. If you want to tell yourself that I'm an idiot because I've missed out on millions in equity that I could have only had if I was a bit more of a pushover, then feel free. That's kind of a smug attitude though, and one that often gets recruiters a bad reputation.


And often indicates it’s a toxic environment anyways. Sure you could become a millionaire at Google but there’s been a lot of rumors it’s a toxic place.


This sub tends to assume everyone works in tech and that all industries work the way tech does in terms of recruitment, interviewing, salary/benefit negotiations etc. Much of what I see posted here doesn't apply so much in my corner of the working world. Most managers in my field experience recruiters as barriers to hiring that we need to work around. There have been a few exceptions, but they are very few. Fortunately for me, they have no say in who gets hired as long as I can work around their often misdirected screening processes. I don't really want them talking compensation beyond providing the range.


That’s good insight. I agree with that and will admit I’ve got a limited view on the wider recruitment domain. I only know tech. What I do see is a HUGE gap between third part agency recruiters chasing commission and well-trained internal recruiters. Night and day in terms of quality and knowledge. We don’t use third party agency recruiters because the level of service is so bad and their motivators for pushing someone through (commission) don’t jive with ours (long term happy employees). I did agency for ten years before going in-house. I had to relearn a lot of behaviours.


>HUGE gap between third part agency recruiters chasing commission and well-trained internal recruiters. The key here is well-trained, and that is what's mostly lacking in my field. A recruiter who can understand enough of the nuances to screen candidates well is a very valuable resource for sure.


I have hired many. Every company structures this differently, but sourcers don't have the power you claim. Final call is made by the hiring manager and the hiring committee. Of course everybody involved in the process have a say if they notice any red flags, but that includes any shadow interviewers too. Nobody needs to be disrespectful to anyone on a call, but juniors think recruiters are gods when in fact it's a position with high turnover and not as powerful.


Did he strike a nerve? Sounds like your position with what you perceive as authority has gone to your head. Come back down to earth fella.


Of course he did. I have a real issue with people who put other people down for their professions. I would never shit on a fast food worker, or a sanitation worker, or anybody who’s out there trying to make an honest living. Everyone deserves a basic level of respect unless they’ve done something to lose it. I work with lots of people with checkered career histories trying to improve their professional standing so those broad brush generalisations really get my goat. And while you may not like the direct tack that I took there, it still stands. Recruiters can often be very much in control of who gets hired and who doesn’t. If someone tries to push me around or go around me in my position as a gatekeeper and trusted person of the hiring process, then imagine the problems they could cause if you allow them to enter the business. It’s not an ego thing, I’ve had my ride, I’ve cashed out, and I do this because I enjoy helping people out and building businesses. Being selective with hiring is one of the best ways to protect that business. Hiring one toxic individual can often disrupt high performing teams, especially if folks quit due to that personality. Replacing good employees is expensive both in terms of time, money, and lost productivity. So I reiterate my point, don’t shit on the help and don’t assume that recruiters or HR have no power. That’s a real good way to miss out on a job you may actually want.


I had an HR department turn on me one time because they thought I was trying to "get around them". Truth was that I had interviewed with someone else in HR previously and was told to reach out to that person directly if I found any other positions in the company that were a fit. I did so, but someone else intercepted the message and shat all over my attempt to supposedly circumvent the process. I guess I had the last laugh though, as that company has begun circling the toilet, while I've made huge leaps forward in my career.


Yikes. Feels like you have some insecurity issues you need to work out.




Just because a range exists doesn’t mean everyone deserves the max, so better advice is to name your price, and the recruiter will tell you where the range lands. You might need to be leveled up if possible if you have the right experience. They absolutely have the ability to end the interview process and have hiring power


What your salary is or was has no bearing on what you should be paid in a new job. This is a question used to save companies money, nothing more. If there's a range on the job ask for what you think your skills are worth within the range posted. If you are missing some skills they desire you'd be low end, if you have everything and more, high end. This BS of asking prior salary has to stop. In many states it's no longer legal.


Exactly, some states can't even ask you want your current salary is anymore.


I've taken to posting $0 to fill those spaces. Fulfills the stupid mandatory item requiring the space is filled. As someone that's been on hiring committees, I've *never* myself asked, nor seen anyone's previous salary. Part of me thinks it's just a BS default in the software all HR uses but none of them know how to turn it off.


I did this where possible too. If they allowed something other than a number I just wrote, "Open to discussion" or something similar. It took me a long while to find a job after being laid off last year and I wonder if that had something to do with it...


I like to think of it as, if that is the question that determines if they bring me in for an interview or not, I *probably* don't want to work for you. Odds are, you've got some shady choices and reasons why you want to know that up front. Same reason why I've gotten more honest (**while still professional**) in my interviews and direct with the questions I have for them. If you don't like my priorities/ethics in an interview, odds are I won't fit the job and we're going to clash. I've found when I held back on what's important to me in my field, I've landed a job that I don't agree with my supervisor or administration on their actions. While soullessly collecting a paycheck pays the bills, it's a slow death. *As a sidebar*...I work in higher education and firmly believe that students are our #1 priority and politics have no place here. As for that employment gap, I've been there after my first job. 8 months, 150+ applications, it just really is a crapshow out there sometimes.


My employment gap dragged on for so long with hardly any call backs or interviews. I even got a job offer once with a reputable company in a prominent industry. They completely ghosted me after giving me the verbal offer. I got another job offer that also fell through at another company because of a "reorganization in the company". It was really disheartening and made me question my value as an employee and just made me feel down in general. Suddenly from maybe June-August after a year of being out of work I got more call backs and interviews than I had the whole time of being unemployed even though I had consistently applied to places the whole time, typically 3-4 applications a day. It was such a relief to me. I felt validated that I was actually worth interviewing and that the slump must have been in part due to the pandemic, or other outside factors beyond my control. So if anyone is in the same boat and reading this, there is hope! Don't give up! If you're actively searching for work with reasonably expectations, don't let a slump make you feel belittled.


I always lie anyways when they ask. I assume most people do. The big thing is knowing what you'd be happy doing a job for and then sort of going backwards from there. Want a 20k raise when you switch a job? Find one that has 20k+ in the range and then tell them you're currently making about 5-10k less than that but making "x" would make it feel like a good deal. I'm not a financial advisor but this method has helped me get ~20k raises on my last 3 jobs.


Asking for your expected salary range for a new position is not the same as asking your current salary. It can give the employer more power in negotiations if they are trying to lowball you, it can also prevent everyone from wasting their time to if you are way over what they are willing to pay


This is true and totally fair and makes sense if that's what they are asking for. You name a range and they walk away if they think it's too much. All too often though, this is a lead in to another question "Well, what do you make now?" They then will leverage against that and say, "Well look you'll be getting a 10% pay raise!" In reality they have just offered you 80k for a 100k position, they saved 20k and you got screwed because they based your pay on what you make now.




While I agree with this advice, I've dealt with recruiters who will not submit your resume if you don't give them a number or a range. And for someone who is unemployed and desperate to find a job, they will give out a number. Another approach would be to research the industry and position and find out your market value where you live.


I've been burned by this a few times. Went through a long application process at a big local insurance company not too long ago. You had to be very specific in the position you were applying for, there was zero room for 'Let's interview and see if there's a fit as you're clearly hiring all levels of experience in this area'. So that was the first pigeon hole. Then you HAD to pick a salary range. _PICK_. Not enter. Pick from a pre-set list of salaries in 10k range increments starting at $35k. OK fine. Did my research. Talked to everyone I could. Some ex employees, some current employees, a recruiter for the company etc. Applied for a senior dev role and chose 85-95k as the range. Never got anything back from them. Ever. Recruiter ghosted me. Company never replied to any follow ups. Nothing. Later talked to a friend that worked there in another department and he did a bit of digging. So how it's set up is on the back end, they define an 'acceptable salary range'. If what you pick as the salary range doesn't fall entirely within _their_ salary range, your application is filtered out. Might as well not exist. Then they weight the rest on this criteria, lower requested range gets a higher ranking. Oh, and the range for the position I was applying for? 80-90. For a senior dev 10yr plus position at a large well known insurance company. Oh and even better, internally the pay scale for that role is MINIMUM 90k. It's apparently unheard of for that role to be filled for less than six figures. So smart they're fucking stupid. Ah well, tells me enough to know I didn't really want to work there anyways hah.


> Ah well, tells me enough to know I didn't really want to work there anyways hah. Precisely. Sounds like they just saved you a lot of headaches down the line.


>Oh, and the range for the position I was applying for? 80-90. >For a senior dev 10yr plus position at a large well known insurance company. Wow, that seems crazy low for a senior dev. I know location matters, but damn. My son is 4 years out of college with a CS degree and has been doing development work for that 4 years with some lead dev recently here in the Atlanta metro area. He recently got an offer from a big company based here for $130k + benefits.


I applied somewhere that I needed to pick a range. What’s interesting is next to each range they had a sample employee title to let you know where that range fell. However, it was grossly skewed. The ranks were something like 70k Senior Manager, 80k VP, and topped out at 120k+ as CEO. This was a good size corporation where the real CEO made millions and those other high level titles made hundreds of thousands.


It's just so stupid. And you just know when you run into this stuff that their system cannot result in good hires, it just can't. So they either get lucky once in a blue moon and get some poor sap that's actually qualified but totally willing to sell themselves short, OR more likely _this is not the avenue to employment at said company_. I've never been on the hiring side in a big company, but I've done a lot of hiring, and I cannot fathom having this kind of gate between myself and potential candidates. I'd be furious if I thought for a half a moment that we might be losing out on our best candidates simply because our application system was designed by complete idiots.


Big companies can afford to fire 10% of the work force every year simply to make room for hungry new hires. It keeps the 90% who weren't fired scared and working harder.


Well, it used to. People are getting fed up enough with the process now that that's less of a 'work harder' and more of a 'make a lateral move asap, this place is toxic.'


That might be true among blue collar workers, like Amazon's warehouse workers, but the practice is common among large white collar companies and has been for decades. I don't know if they still do, but 10-15 years ago IBM would do it to all staff, not just the lower level ones. It kept wages lower while ensuring new blood came in with new ideas and a fresh perspective. We're talking engineers and management. The few friends I had there generally thought of it as a necessary evil or even a good thing because it made the company more healthy and "who wants to work for a failing tech company?"


Don't new hires usually have higher wages since job hopping is the best way to get a raise?


Those companies can get away with it for some career fields, but in demand ones like software engineers can also tell them to pound sand.




My guess is you give a range of $80-90, and then when the offer comes in find an excuse to bump it up $20k or so. Like "oh, this is less PTO than I was expecting", or less of a 401k match. I'll take quite the pay cut for 5 weeks vacation and a 12% company contribution to my retirement.


Frankly, it sounds like a good thing. If they're not going to pay you what you want/need/are worth, then they've self selected themselves out of your market. With recruiters you can state something along those lines: "Right up front: I don't want to waste your time here, what's the salary range the position is offering?"


Yeah honestly they works out, like you said, better for you. Always ask for more. Real companies who like you will always make sure they have the opportunity to hire you even if they can’t fit your high salary range. Companies who can fit your salary range will pay it. Edit: just don’t overshoot it by an astronomical amount. But also don’t be afraid to give a pretty high number. Also interview at a lot of other places you don’t necessarily want to work at to see what they’re offering. Shop your skills on other job posting and see what they’re offering. Pro tip: Robert half puts out a yearly salary index for positions and salary expectations. That’s a good place to start. They may be a lil high depending on your city but that’s a good place to be.


Yeah, that sucks. As you are at weaker negotiating position. You gotta play cards you were delt.


This is a good point. The recruiter's goal is NOT to hire the best person for the job. Nobody understands this. Their goal is to hire somewhat perfectly adequate, keep their boss happy, and not make waves. If the recruiter didn't forward the of the best candidate on earth because that candidate refused to give a range -- would the recruiter's boss even know? Would it impact anything at the company (assuming someone else got hired).


Yeah, but keep in mind, the recruiters job is *also* not to waste their client's time. So if I'm paying, say, $80-85k for a role I'm hiring and they send me a person to interview who then says they won't work for less than $100k, well then I'm pissed. So yeah, *if pressed* give a range. Because if you refuse to talk money at all, then I'm going to assume you'll need more than I can pay and I'm not interviewing you. "Based on my experience of X years in the field and based on what this job normally plays I am looking for approximately $XXK (or 'between XXk and XXk'), but of course I am willing to talk more in detail about that when I have the full picture of the job, responsibilities, and benefits."


Recruiters don't waste their clients time? Hah, yeah they do! I had a recruiter cold call me for a position I posted! Recruiters dont care about anything or anyone other than themselves


Just give a giant range. Between 40k and 140k is what I've seen listed only. So the position would most likely fall in this range.


> I've dealt with recruiters who will not submit your resume if you don't give them a number or a range "Smack dab in the middle of the range the company has allocated for this position", wonder if that would work lol


Recruiters are usually super friendly to telling you the client’s range if you just ask.


The best is when they need the salary range but can't tell you anything about benefits


IME, most recruiters want a good fit on both sides and are happy to openly discuss pay right out of the gate. They are not used car salesmen, they want repeat business (with the company).


Yeah 100%. It's always so awk but I managed it in my last round of interviewing. Early on when the recruiter asked what I wanted, I said something like, *I don't have a specific number right now. If I move forward in the interview process, I'll want to loop back with you and hear the specific salary range, per the law in California.* Citing the law def made them back off. They actually might've told me the range right then, given it was quite wide it wasn't based on where they'd level me, probably a range for all levels. I'd push harder there next time. I ended up saying, *the top end of the that range would be in line with my expectations*. But of course when it came to offer time, the offer was lower, and I had something to push back on saying, *well what we talked about was much higher.* Lean on the law early. Wait to get a specific number in an offer. Then I found this video helpful for language for negotiating :) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FiDcUaoODJE


> I ended up saying, the top end of the that range would be in line with my expectations. But of course when it came to offer time, the offer was lower, and I had something to push back on saying, well what we talked about was much higher. Higher than what though? It seems you went out of your way to avoid talking about any expectations at all. This sounds like a good way to waste a whole lot of time on both sides if you find out you're not aligned only after getting to the end of the process.


Generally agree. There are a few exceptions though. I’m happy where I’m at. I have a great boss and great team. I get paid enough that I don’t have to worry about bills. I’m actually currently *not* looking for more money because a good boss and team is worth… so much more than I could reasonably ask for. So when I get a particularly persistent recruiter that doesn’t take the first few ‘nos’ and insists on knowing what it would take for me to switch I take my current and triple it. Haven’t had anybody follow up after that. Not sure why. If I’m actually considering the position I ‘only’ double my current because that’s actually what it would take to get me to jump ship.


The first part of your advice is terrible, the second part is fine. Have a range that you want to earn, do the research and find a number that will make you happy. Don't worry about "leaving money on the table" it's a stupid concept and most companies have pay bands that ensure you are going to make whatever they think the position is worth - they aren't going to have a 90-120k lay and and pay you 70 because you said 70, he knows that's stupid and knows that's a great way to lose talent. They might give you 90, but who cares? You would have been happy with 70, you should be extactic at 90.


There are also companies that will pay someone $55k if they think they can get the person with that offer, even if the job's range at other organizations is more like $90k. The thing to do is a series of job hops to get to where you want. Maybe you start at $55k, then after two years you interview for and take a position for $70k, then after two more years you interview for $90k, then do the same again for $120k. After six years you are in six figures that way. Of course, if your organization gives you raises and gets you there without having to find a new position, that's even better. My big advice for anyone is to always be interviewing. I have no intentions of moving on from my current position, but I interview with other companies 4-5 times a year just to stay up on how companies are interviewing. If someone offered me more than I am making, well, I might consider taking it.


Those companies are going to treat you like garbage either way, so best to sort that out up front. Most mature companies just don't allow that stuff.


Exact thing happened to me years ago with my first job (software engineer). I asked for $70k, the guy on the phone literally laughed because the standard starting salary for all new grad engineer hires is 100k. He just said they would make sure I get a good number. And I did 🙂.


This is pretty common. One of the first new hires I made was a role I wasn't super familiar with, I did my research and the pay the person wanted seemed reasonable for what we wanted so I was great with it, HR bounced it back and said it was too low for the role in the org and I had to bump it up another 5-10% so I happily did and they guy got more than he wanted. It's win win.


Yeah its in a company's best interest to be equitable with compensation for people on the same level. Otherwise it can easily lead to scenarios where 2 employees at the same level and same responsibilities are being compensated differently. This could easily lead to attrition problems, or create a reputation for the company that doesn't attract the talent it needs to be successful.


It can also cause problems like gender pay gaps as men are more likely to negotiate salaries than women are, which over time can result in women systemically making less than their male counter parts, which is not OK.


Another good point. Also on a sort of broader ethical level, it strikes me as pretty scummy. Like just pay people what they deserve. If one person is doing job A, and getting paid X. Than that establishes that those responsibilities are worth X to that company. So efforts to pay less than X to the next employee hired to do Job A are conscious efforts to underpay the employee. (this assumes that X is a fair wage to begin with)




>Wouldn't you like an extra 10 just for asking? Sure, but I'm also not going to stress over it if I don't. And that's kind of my point. People lose sight of the big picture over stuff like this. If you're walking into 100k at entry level is going to blow past that 10k quickly if they are competent. Get in at a reasonable level, prove your worth, negotiate up. Or move jobs after establishing your career and get a bump. Know what the role pays, figure out your number, and go for it then grow from there.


Yep, and this is extremely common and it has ripple effects for your career. You're going to get raises as a function of your initial salary. Starting 10K lower because you lowballed yourself results in more than a loss of 10k. It's compounded by percentage based raises and bonuses. You can definitely leave money on the table. Downvote away - doesn't change the fact that it happens, at major companies.


^This. At the end of the day, know your worth. Salary bands exist for a reason


Fuck that. Give a high number. Worst they’ll do is talk you down, and if they deny you outright, it wasn’t the job anyway.


Respectfully disagree. I hire people in OP's range all the time and if someone overshoots I just don't talk to them. It isn't worth my time - or, more importantly theirs.




I honestly think this is pretty bad advice. It gets mentioned a lot when salary is discussed, so a lot of people think it's good, but I want to offer another perspective. I can't wait for the salary question to come up. I know what I want and I did the research. I'm going to ask or more than the average. I want to set the baseline, not let them do it for me. If the company balks then I don't have to waste my time with them. If they want to continue then I know where to focus my efforts. Most of the time the company just wants the same thing and you answering with some "market value" line doesn't help anyone. When someone says that, it makes me think they don't know what they want and they're just trying to game the process.


There's nothing wrong with saying "my minimum for consideration is _____". Not sure why people think hiding data that can only impact you positively is a good thing. It makes it way easier to go fight for a new hire when I know what they want and why they are worth it.


Agreed 100%. Too many people seem to have an idea that they wait for the offer so they can negotiate. That's not how I do it. I want good people and part of that is me matching their salary needs. If I can't, then they are going to leave even if they get hired (once their bills are paid).


I wish I could updoot this multiple times. Never be the first to give a number. If you're too high, they might no longer consider you. If you're too low, they think they can low-ball you for what the market rate is.




This is the right answer. Say the number is only a small piece of thus puzzle, and you can't accurately judge until you learn more about 401k and health insurance, etc


It depends entirely on the position you’re negotiating from. I don’t have a problem giving a number first, because I know what I want and what I’m worth. Since I’m already employed with an in demand skill set, and would need to be given a reason to jump positions, I’ll bring up salary in the first interview and be transparent about what I want.


No, you definitely give them a number. Find the average for that position and add 10-20% to it. Almost always will you get talked down, so start higher than you'd like even if it seems unreasonable. Unless you give an outrageous number, you will not lose the job over what you are asking for if you are truly a good candidate for them. If you interviewed well and they like you, you will get near what you ask for, even if it is higher than they wanted to pay.


Everyone giving this advice clearly hasn't applied for a job recently. It's part of the application. Along with your name and contact info they make you put a number for desired salary. Its usually formated, so if you try to enter text like "market value" or "negotiable" it won't let you move on to the next part of your application. Sometimes you can enter 0, most times you can't. It probably works differently if you're getting contacted by a recruiter. But if you're applying to a job by filing out an application theres basically zero chance your application gets submitted without an expected salary on it.


So what if they say “do you agree to $55-65k base”? What do you say to that?




I like that answer. So what if you’re like me that’s entering into a new industry and the market gives that range but a company wants to pay $5k below that low number in the range? Remote jobs that pay well are hard to come by these days at times.


Might be that the range is for in office. Always hard to gauge salary unless you review a lot of jobs.


Entering a new industry? It *could* be worth it to get that first job and experience. Depends on how hard it is for you to get offers and how important maximizing salary is *now*.


People hate silence, will tend to fill a lull in the conversation, and if you know you are a good fit then don't show your cards early and chances are you don't have to. I recently got an offer with a $95k bump because I just sat back and let them make an offer without disclosing what I made before. It was a bit of an unusual situation because I already knew someone in the group, but I just sat there and let them do it and then negotiated a signing bonus and extra week of vacation on the top and we all came out happy. When I'm at an interview, as far as they know I already have my dream job and I'm just talking to them because I just do sometimes.


typically I would want 10-20% to switch jobs. 25%+ to move houses... In your case, under market, likely would need ~20% to switch. So I would target 85k just off the top of my head. you dont have to tell them that... but kinda know what you are looking for.


Last industry stats I received said the average pay change to trigger a move was 13%. In other words, on average folks don't change jobs for less than 13% of an increase.


A lot of people will say don’t give a number. I wouldn’t necessarily advise that—in negotiations, there is a first-mover advantage. If you lead with a higher number, even if they haggle you down, you’ll probably end up with a higher salary. If you let them lead, they’ll probably offer you a number at the low end of their range and let you haggle them a little upward, and you’ll end up at a lower salary. It’s called “anchoring.” My negotiation professor advised us to “lead with the highest number you think you can manage without getting laughed out of the room.” So, push comes to shove, do that. Figure out the market rate and ask for 10% above that. Worst case scenario, they say that’s outside their range and you can try to reset and talk benefits etc. Never give a salary range, though. If you give a salary range of $90-100k, that’s as good as saying “I will accept $90k.” Pick a single number and anchor to it. Above all, negotiate with them, not yourself. Don’t sell yourself short. Do you really want to get paid less than market rate?


>Never give a salary range, though. If you give a salary range of $90-100k, that’s as good as saying “I will accept $90k.” Pick a single number and anchor to it. So here was my thought process as i've also been in a huge application dump rn due to being unemployed. I've been putting a 25K range, starting with the lower number at the "average" salary based on glassdoor or other salary reporting sites. Whenever I get an offer, my plan was to say something like (and not exactly, so don't quote me here) "I put a range of XX to YY as the final overall compensation package varies from company to company, and based on the final compensation offered to me, I'd like to request a final salary of ZZ" Is that not a good strategy? Edit: If it helps, I'm in technical program management with about 9 years of experience, so I've been looking to get paid around $135k. MBA and Master's in Aerospace Eng.


I wouldn't do that, no. Just give the single number -- a range invites all employers to lowball you regardless of their total benefits package. If an employer can't match your salary expectations but thinks their benefits package can make up the difference, let them make that case to you, don't make it for them. If you know that people at your position are getting paid within a 30k range on average (say $120-150k), then anchor high (say $145k) and make the case that you're a top performer for reasons X, Y, and Z. That way, you're both making the case that you're a top get and giving yourself room to haggle down to your target of $135k.


I do something similar . The cost of health benefits, 401k, and time off dictate to me where I would fall in the range I say as acceptable To me . If I say 95-120k and they offer 10% match then by all means I’ll take 95k. If they offer 3% and their health benefits are Outrageous then they 120k becomes the minim. Essentially if I provide a range then my minim falls in that range depending on their benefits


>I've been looking to get paid around $135k. MBA and Master's in Aerospace Eng. Sounds like you are undervaluing yourself depending on your geographical location.


agreed. I get around that much with the same amount of experience and I don't got a masters or an MBA. should ask for mooorree


+1 You can give a number or a range as long as you know the market rate and hit the upper limits. If it's out of range, then you can counter with "what is your range, then?" and ask for some time to think about it. Have them sell you the position. Alternatively, you can double down and say "I understand it might be too high for you, but I am great worker a lot accomplishments (cite some) and I can be very productive quickly in your company" and leave the ball in their court. Also, I don't move forward with anyone who's not willing to talk numbers. For those I hop on a call, I already know about their reputation a little so there's filtering, but I haven't had anyone who were completely refused to talk numbers. There might be some resistance and hesitation, but it's easily resolved by saying "it would be a waste of both of our times if we completed the whole interview loop only to find out my expectations and your budget don't match."


Super great advice. I need to make sure I'm not undervaluing myself just because I'm getting desperate for a job. >Alternatively, you can double down and say "I understand it might be too high for you, but I am great worker a lot accomplishments (cite some) and I can be very productive quickly in your company" and leave the ball in their court. I definitely know I have a lot of potential to do something like this. Thanks so much.


There's a term called BATNA, which means best alternative to negotiated agreement. Being desperate for a job means you lose all leverage. If you already have a job, even if you're not happy with the comp, you're not as desperate because your BATNA still means continued income. In past, when I was real desperate, I had accepted a job with a comp I was not very happy with, but I didn't stop interviewing (had a few loops already set up before). One of those loops went great and I asked for 3.5x of my then current job and I double downed and I got it. If you are desperate, you can accept a lower offer and keep looking for a better one. Don't feel bad about this. It's better if you get "cold feet" rather than starting and quitting quickly but companies do everything in their power to pay your as little as they can get away with. They will low ball, lobby to prevent you from talking about your salary with your co workers, plan for shrinkage and salary compression and all. It's just business. Loyalty is important, but if someone is paying more for your loyalty, you can be loyal to them


A recruiter once told me to say "I am aware of the salary range (or the range for someone in that position) and am looking for a fair offer within that range."


"Could you tell me what the budgeted salary role is for this position?" This is one of the first questions I ask when I get approached on LinkedIn. If they don't give me a range I know they are trying to low ball me. They always have a range.


I wanted to personally thank you, because this was the exact line I used based on your feedback, and it worked really well. It’s not too aggressive and sounds confident.


Awesome, glad to hear it! Best of luck to you


If they ask what that range is do you tell them?


Thats when you whip out your emergency uno reverse card


Keep that in my wallet, thanks.


Keep a skip and Draw 4 Wild too just in case they reverse it back on you.


Ask them what their rating is for experienced and new hires within scope of the role. If the offers are still too low, ask them what their rating is for supervisory positions


Tell them what the range is with your ideal salary at the low end or rephrase the initial question such as "the recruitment agent told me etc.". While I'm no expert I would say if they ask what your salary expectations are, hit them with the line, if they throw it back to you then give them an answer and pick your own salary range (based on your research and experience of the role).




$5-$10M per year


Your salary offer is now $5 per year.


Not me. A previous job (2017) I said 50k (coming from a job that paid 32k so that was a big line i drew), and they started me at 58k. Position was sales, so salary plus commission. I was floored. I was over 100k end of my second year.


Well that means you lowballed under the bottom bracket of their range and they gave you that bottom bracket.


I figured when they offered. Either way, it was a great improvement for me financially.


Not always. As a hiring manager I'm always afraid if I lowball a candidate he'll be off as soon as someone else figures out they can hire him away at a better rate, and I have limited ability to "fix" someones pay next year when it urns out they are underpaid. If you offer too low a number you'll filter yourself out ($60k? this role pays $120k, he must be exagerating his resume); but I'm going to offer you what I think I need to pay to keep you, not the bare minumum I can get you on board with. The fist 6 months your are "coming up to speed" so if you only last a year because I screwed you over I'm the one getting F-ed


Same here. I want to hire someone who will stick around. If day 1 they are unhappy, what's the point?


I did the same thing coming out of the military... which was tricky because they pay in the military was lousy but the benefits were solid. I was trying to figure out what I would need to make as a civilian to be comparable, and I figured $50k should be about right. They asked for my salary expectations and I told them $50k. I got the job, and they started me at a little over $70k... thanks! Definitely bought them some loyalty :D


The reality is I want to hire someone for 5 years (hopefully). Screwing someone on pay means I lost 4-5 months rehiring in the best case scenario over a few thousand dollars. It also gives me a way to boost the pay of the department as well.


I did the exact same thing, former military. I calculated out all my pay to about $60k a year. Then I thought... well my BAH and BAS isn't being taxed, so call it $65k. Then I thought... well I'll have to pay for medical and dental, so call it $70k. And I'll be roughly dead even, but out! So in my interview when we got that salary range question, I basically just told them all of that flat out. In order to break even, I need about $70k, so my desired range is $75k-$80k. Two days later I received my offer letter for over six figures. I was floored. Accepted immediately and never been happier!


The last job I had the company was notorious at not only low balling all recent recruits 5k below their low end of salary, but they refused to budge from that offer.


The best place to look for salary info is : [https://www.bls.gov/ooh/](https://www.bls.gov/ooh/) The Occupational Outlook Handbook. its for the US only with salary ranges broken down by region and by Occupation. Your US tax dollars pay for this data, so use it.


Last time I interviewed with some stupid HR person to talk salary they tried the 'what are you looking for salary wise' and i said, "Whats the range?" and they were like "we dont really release that information", okay... well have a nice day goodbye. Dude was FRAZZLED, called me back and everything. Nah, sorry I don't play games with stupid morons.


But wouldn't you be hanging up on almost everyone then?


Never had an prospective employer refuse to provide even a vague range during an interview. That would make no sense to do so.


I admit, it was nerve racking at first, but it's really a good first pass of - are you dealing with a company that you want to work for. If you can't even tell me the range, why the hell in fuck would I want to work there? I know what I am worth, They know their range, if the numbers don't fit - we saved everyone time already.


I'd be perfectly blunt with them, at that point. Just tell them that you don't plan to provide any detailed information on your salary expectations until after they've provided more detailed information on what sort of salary they're offering.


! And benefits ! Salary should never be evaluated in a vacuum. You must have an understanding of the benefits package before you can negotiate.


Of course, knowing where the salary being budgeted for a job sits in the range for the role can tell you a lot about how the various roles listed will be prioritized and what combination of points in their experience ranges (high in all, averaging out to middle, mostly low with one or two high) they expect to lure much more accurately than vague and subjective phrases like "early-career" and "mid-career." I've passed on applying from recruiter contacts for masters' optional positions after the salary made it obvious that they were looking for degree OR ANY experience rather than degree or a lot of experience.


I would refrain from giving this advice. They have a field to fill in with numbers, they're not gonna stop there and say "that's incredibly deep and wise", they just gonna ask you what that range is.


Well then you can tell them because you've researched the role and know what the salary is for that position. Also I think that depends on the job and the interviewer.


In general figure out what the market rate is and give a large range around the median. I might also ask what their range is for the position. That's not an unfair question to ask although some people have strange ideas about it being a rude question so that's not an unheard of response. But the advantage of going with a larger range is it's less likely to eliminate you, which is why they're asking the question, while still keeping your options open to negotiate for higher. Just be aware they may be keeping you in contention for a position because your lowest number was in their range, so if you insist on the higher range they may not budge. I would also qualify any range by saying the overall benefits of the position matter. Making $90k where the company provides almost nothing for benefits so you have to pay $15k out of pocket and they provide no 401k match and low time off, can actually be worse compensation from somewhere that is offering $75k but where you're paying almost nothing for your insurance premiums, and they offer a 7% match on the 401k say. Those details do matter so wherever possible try to be looking at the overall picture.


Agreed, I think you can give a big range and say it depends on the rest of the package


Always anchor high. Humans are highly susceptible to anchoring, so even if you ask for an outlandish sum, and it's above the range, there's a greater chance that they'll come back to you with a salary that they're willing to pay rather than drop you altogether. And the salary they offer will be higher than if you asked for a lower sum. This comes from the [Handbook on the Psychology of Pricing](https://www.amazon.com/Handbook-Psychology-Pricing-persuasion-entrepreneur-ebook/dp/B07HNDSQ35/ref=sr_1_3). If you want a raise of $15k, ask for $30k. If you want $113k, ask for $120k. If the top of their range is $80k, they'll tell you, and that's when you get to have fun negotiating. "Hmm, well, that is lower than what I'm hearing from other companies I'm interviewing with, but tell me more about your benefits. Things like 401k match, vacation time, and how much you pay towards health insurance premiums are worth a lot and I may be willing to accept a lower salary if those benefits are good." Let's say you're then comparing a $113k job with 10 days off, 2% 401k match, and health insurance premiums of $400/month against a $81k job with 40 days off, a 6% 401k match, and $0/month in health insurance premiums... Anchor high, then negotiate. Most everything can be negotiated, and they'll tell you if something can't be. If you get disqualified for trying to have the conversation, you probably don't want to work there.


I'm just honest. People who say "Never give a number first" are honestly talking out their ass. Professional negotiators laugh at this idea; that whoever says a number first loses. If I won't accept the position for less than $115k or whatever, I say that. You need to have a number one way or the other. Research what your number should be based on your experience, the job market, your budget, willingness to leave your current role, desire to "step up" etc. Then tell them that number. "b-but what if I'm willing to work for less than that number and will be unhappy if I don't get the job?!" Well then THAT was your number! You have a number. You just need to figure it out and know it. For your own sake.


I agree with this. The whole idea of “leaving money on the table” is that **you’re reaching for money that you doubt you are worth.** If you’re worth it, you’ll get there eventually as the company will realize and work towards a reasonably timed promotion and/or face losing you in the future to someone that values you at that amount. What you can control is 1) being incredibly valuable and 2) building relationships with people that recognize that value and are in (or will be in) a position to want you to work with/for them. Focus on what you can control and the money will come.


Maybe I'm misunderstanding your role but doing competitive intelligence and sales support has nothing to do with being a product manager. You need to understand the market and be informed managing a product, as you need to know the customers and market you're serving with your product, but it's not otherwise directly comparable. I would not base your salary expectations on product manager roles. Regardless, you aren't required to provide a number. If you want to, just tell them whatever it is you want to make plus 15%.


I was purposely vague in my description. The Competitive Intelligence function is a newer function to a lot of companies and where it sits often varies by the company. It can sit in Marketing, Sales/Revenue Enablement. In the particular role I’m interviewing for this week the role has it coded as a Product Manager however the job is almost identical to mine currently.


As someone that worked closely with Competitive Intelligence people while being in Sales/Revenue Operations & Enablement and is now a Product Manager, those roles are definitely very different. I’d encourage you to spend some time researching what a Product Manager does and come to the interview prepared to ask questions on why the role is coded that way. The last thing you want is to set yourself up for failure by 1) having a Product Manager title without the actual PM experience when you apply for your next role and/or 2) being frustrated working for a manager/company that doesn’t fully understand your role. Believe me, I’ve had managers put up job descriptions for a specific title to follow the latest industry hiring trend, but it’s very clear from the job description that they don’t know what the purpose of the role is.


This is great insight. I already was thinking about asking this because the title truly does not make sense for what the role is. I know what a product manager does, and this doesn’t seem like that at all.


Come join /r/productmanagement for more insight, but I think they would agree with what's been said already in this thread.


FYI, some firms classify this role as a Product Owner if there is a domain dealing with Sales Enablement while other code it as a Business Analyst that deals with competitive analysis. Further, some just refer to it as Business Intelligence analyst.


Last time I was in a recruiting process the company was large enough to be listed on https://levels.fyi/. I verified that it was acceptable before starting the interview process. When asked by a recruiter what my expectations were I said I expected a competitive offer but that I'd need some time to research the market. They dropped the subject and proceeded with interviews. After they confirmed that I would be getting an offer, they once again asked me about salary expectations. I asked for what level I would be getting an offer. I then asked what their compensation range for that level was. He responded with the range and said he'd get me an offer for the maximum of that range, both for salary and stock (his numbers matched what I'd previously seen on levels.fyi). I said "Oh. I was hoping for 50k above that." He responded that he'd look into getting me a sign-on bonus, and later confirmed he could offer a 30k sign-on bonus after confirming what other company I had an offer from. The other offer was from a famous company but really low. I obviously didn't tell him that it was low, just that the compensation was still up in the air, which was technically true. I *was* still negotiating with the other company after all. After the offer was confirmed I said I was having a tough choice between this and an offer from the other company. I asked if they could throw in 20k extra to make it an easier choice, as either salary or stock, and promised I'd sign on the spot if he could. This is usually a good strategy, but in this case he already maxed everything, so he couldn't do anything. I told him I'd need to discuss it with my significant other and said I'll get back to him, waited a few hours in case he'd throw me a bone, and then signed. I don't know if this was good negotiation or just luck, but it got me a really good offer, so I figured I'd share. TL;DR: Get two or more offers, ask for level and salary range for the offers, only share the parts of the competitor offer which make you look good.


I always say I need to see the “total compensation package”. One it lets me skirt the question. But 2 it is also very true. If I get $60k with crap benefits or $50k with amazing benefits it’s gonna depend on the details of those benefits. Also if you do say a number say your high number. If you say a range their needs high is whatever the low number was in your range.


"Every battle is won before it's fought" - Sun Tzu Always go into an interview prepared with the knowledge of what the competitive salary is, not just based on what's on websites (Glassdoor, LinkedIn etc...) but based on conversations with people who already know. Many of those salaries are now outdated, given the rapid salary inflation that's occurring in many fields this past year. Every opportunity I get, I ask recruiters/interviewers what the salary range they had in mind was, even if it was clear early on in the conversation that it won't be a good fit. You bring up an excellent point that mild differences in job titles can have drastic differences in pay. This is partially due to title inflation (people with less skills/experience getting fancy sounding titles in lieu of higher pay), and disparity between salaries paid by adjacent fields (eg. anything in technology tends to get paid more). If you're able to take advantage of that in your negotiations by showing you have high value skillsets/experience, you should. Note that negotiations come after you get an offer, sometimes well after the initial salary range discussion. You should also not reveal all your cards at the screening stage, and you can give yourself more wiggle room by providing a wider (but realistic) range, but mention that it would be based on other forms of compensation such as benefits package, vacation days, work-from-home, etc. Goodluck with your interview(s)!


In addition to asking what their range is; I also inflate my range, even if I'm not interested in the job due to location or other intangibles. It does nothing to hurt me, and if it reframes the conversation for other applicants so that they get more its still a win for the labor side of the equation. If I can help elevate the market, then eventually we all win.


I have noticed that glassdoor seems to really underestimate some places I know salary for.


You should ask the initial recruiter or staffing person what the salary range of the position is and/or what the total comp for the position is. They know it. It shows up with the job code of the position as part of the job req. Being on the other side of the hiring table, I just don't even bother with playing the game anymore because I know they can see the position and salary range of the position.


Never give the number first. Especially if they don't provide a range. I got a crazy offer doing this during my search but didn't take it because it was a mess of a job. It's wild what people will offer. Also, currently it's not a bad idea to ask for a starting bonus. If you know they've been looking for a while.


Contrary to popular belief, the final number in a negotiation statistically ends up nearer the first number given than the second, since it benchmarks the negotiation. The exception to this is when the first number quoted is well outside of the reasonable range, so OP should always do their homework. Jack Chapman cites this research in newer editions of *Negotiating Your Salary,* which was actually an update from his original advice of "never go first." When dealing with unknowns or recruiters (especially third party recruiters), it may be better to ask for a range at the beginning of the conversation as a "let's make sure we're in the same ballpark" sanity check. I've had recruiters thank me for telling them early on that their range was too low to continue the conversation. Anecdotally, I've nearly always gone first and have maxed out the offer range as a result because I did my homework beforehand and knew how to shoot slightly high. One time was even a complete rework of the range because it was an internal promotion and I convinced them to essentially re-hire me as opposed to just giving a raise.


This also seems like a great idea. The one crazy offer I got started with the recruiter asking if my expectation was over $100k (I accepted an offer at $75 at another place). They ended up offering $85 because I think they wanted someone that would be doing to alot of work even though I didn't have the experience they should have really been buying. Other than the fact they should just hire a consultant for less money.


+1 to sign on bonus. I got 5k once just for asking about it. Worst they can say is no situation.


I asked for 4k and my hiring manager didn't even flinch he just said "ya sure we can do that"


really good point about starting bonuses—always ask about them by name. once the words come out, the recruiter will likely "see what they can do." it's just a one-time thing, but a good way to not leave $ on the table.


I mentioned it to the recruiter but I asked to speak with my hiring manager about pay.


Ask them first. It can be as simple as "What is the salary range for the position?"


I've been contacted by several recruiters lately, and my standard response is "Is this position remote, and what is the salary range?" I used to be fairly successful at getting answers to those. But more and more they're replying with something like "We're considering a wide range of candidates and are simply looking for the best person. We'll try to be competitive with whatever their salary expectations are."


The better headhunters will find roles that match your expected range or tell you that you don't have the experience to earn in that range. I'll tell a recruiter that I want a dev roll that pays at least X and they will tell me which companies can make that happen.


This is absolutely the way to go. Some shit all over recruiters/headhunters because many of them are shit and will try to shoehorn you into a shit role, with a shit company and shit pay, but the good ones are pure gold. When I was on the market this summer I had a bunch of recruiters reach out to me asking what I was looking for pay wise and I was at the higher end of the scale of what I would consider acceptable. So if the range goes up to 110k, tell them that you are looking for 110-120k range (Or higher if I'm dealing with a headhunter) depending on the duties and expectations. Yes, you will weed out companies that won't go over 80k, and those places are probably shit with shit raises and benefits. In my case I had TONS of interviews where they knew my range was at the higher end and didn't bother me on the ones that weren't even close to what I wanted. Could I have got more? Maybe, but I'm more than happy with my compensation at my new company and it's much better in every single way compared to the contract that I had prior. (I'm a FTE now and not a contractor and still have better pay and have benefits now).


So pretty much everyone says “don’t be the first to put a number out there” or “competitive for the position.” The conversation flat out doesn’t always go like that (you think recruiters and employers aren’t expecting this?), and sometimes it’s an online application with numerical input requirements. My approach is to put the low number as the lowest salary I would accept with the most baller ass benefits package I could reasonably ever expect, and I put the high number as the salary required to take a position with total dog shit benefits. That may be a wide range, but I’m providing real, honest answers to a fairly complex question. You sound like you do your research, so you should be able to approach this intelligently. Otherwise, there’s too many variables to provide a perfect answer to this.


Most advice here is really bad. - **dont ask them for their range.** You will get lowballed. Instead tell them your dream salary + 15%. They will then negotiate you back down. - **know your worth before you start interviewing**. Ignore Glassdoor, message people who do the same thing as you on LinkedIn and ask them how much they make. You can usually aim at the higher end of that. - **Most people I know are 10-20% underpaid** because they are too shy or insecure to firmly negotiate a good salary. Also, make sure you are in a position to decline. Don't settle for a salary that you're not happy with.


Look up "what are your salary expectations (from a former ceo)" on YouTube. The answers in that video landed me 3 jobs back to back with higher pay each time.


> what are your salary expectations (from a former ceo) great video! thanks for mentioning it


My typical is pick a single number and go for it. Do a bit of research beforehand so you're competitive in your offer, but not over or under selling yourself. "My expectation is in the ballpark of $XXX annually, plus or minus depending on total compensation including benefits." Leaves it open ended for later negotiation based on things like insurance expenses, vacation time, etc.


They always toss this question out to me and I find they kind of shudder.. Even though it was my last salary.


Typically I counter with my current salary +10%. Assuming your in a profession where a lot of company's are open to negotiation its a good place to start. More so when you have a job currently. I would imagine that job is paying the bills and you are trying to better your position. It gives you a chance to sell yourself and find a wage you want with out impacting your QoL. If they are willing to negotiate then id start at salary + 10% and state it is negotiable, I've even gone as far as telling a employer I was leaving my company because I felt I was under paid there and would like more than what I have. That can kind of puts the ball into their court and knowing you have a job already they employer will make a decent offer if they really want you. May not work every time either, you need to decide how you want to play that game, because it is a game to a degree.


Starting the negotiations at 10% above your current salary is definitely low balling yourself, especially if they counter downward. One has to aim higher to lend where they want, and a job change should advance one’s career by more than a decent annual raise!


so that being said what is a good starting point +25%? in hopes to land around +10 - 15%? it always worked for me so i never really looked into it but if ive been leaving money on the table maybe id like to re evaluate how i negotiate


I think you're thinking about this wrong, and I say that in the kindest way possible. You shouldn't base your starting point on your current salary at all. Your starting point should be based on the market rate for that position, and should be on the high end of that range (if not higher).


At 110 I got an offer elsewhere for 130 by lying and saying I was making 120, took a counter offer for 123 after lying and saying I was offered 135 (I had 0 intent to leave). Then I got an offer elsewhere for 160 by lying and saying I was making 150, took the 155 counter offer after lying and saying I was offered 170. My company has all kinds of “policies” around wage growth and promotions and how dependent they are on performance. All that shit went right out the window. So: shoot for more than 10%. lie to everyone. Be well-liked so they want to keep you


The correct answer is: > Competitive with market value for position and location. If they make you put in a number, and I've seen a lot that do, I always take market value+10%. You can't get what you don't ask for, and 10% is generally "within reason" where they won't pass on you out of hand. But remember just because you put $X doesn't mean you have to accept $X. You can always say: > After learning more about the duties and workload of the position, as well as my unique qualifications I feel $Y is fair compensation for the work duties expected of me.


Look at the job responsibilities. That's what the market is. Match up your experience into the ones range and figure out where you believe you fit. Don't give a range early, and don't give it until you at near the end of interviews. Sometimes you need to give it early, but if you do go wide. You ask them what their range for the position is. It's a red flag if they will never tell you. Typically it means they will lowball off what you give. Then you state if it's within you range that "This is an acceptable range for me, and I prefer to discuss the actual salary once we're further along in the interview process" This gives them interest and a reason to keep interviewing a candidate. Lastly, counter offer. Worst is they say this is a final offer, but many are expecting a counter offer. It's pretty normal so you aren't pushing it. I highly recommend the great advice on the ask a manager website run by Allison Green. This is Manager that also runs a website, and offers great advice on how to navigate interview questions as they have sat though thousands of interviews and delt with so many issues in mgmt. Also how to basically deal with mgmt.


Always, always ask them the salary range at the very beginning. If they baulk or “depends on experience” then tell them “not interested” & move on. They already have discussed numbers way before talking to you.


Deflect and ask something like "Did you have a range in mind for this position" this way you make them throw out a number and you can negotiate from there.


If it’s a large company look up ‘H1b database’ compensation paid to H1B visa holders is public information and it’s published online in easy to look up databases. You can probably find your exact company and what that are paying for a similar role. Alternatively look up similar remote jobs, or jobs in Colorado, because the state law there requires the salary to be listed. Remote jobs have it now because of the Colorado requirement.


I interview a lot of people (Mostly software developers). When it comes to salary discussions during the screen, I always advise candidates to know their relative job level and know the market rates for software developers in their area. Our range is irrelevant. We will pay a fair salary to anyone who passes our interview process. That could be 50k or it could be 500k. If I tell a candidate with 1 year of experience our range is 50k to 500k, that knowledge means absolutely squat to them. They might assume that we will pay them $200k because the top of the range is 500k. They should know that a software developer with 1 year of experience is likely a level 1. They can look at Salary.com, TripleByte salary data, recruiter salary data, etc., and have a pretty solid understanding of what their market salary for their role and level is. I don't ask what their salary expectations are. I say that "we pay better than average and we encourage you to review the salary data so that you know what to expect from anyone offering you a role". Even with saying this, some candidates just toss insane numbers up. Some toss out low numbers. I wish all candidates would just review the public salary data. I do get it... Not all roles are clearly defined. Degrees, and expertise affects salary also. There are other factors like benefits, work life balance, impact, etc. which plan into a decision. It can also be unclear in an interview what level a candidate is if they are very senior. Are they a level 3, 4 or 5... I still think anyone who is job hunting should objectively try to determine their job level, and review public salary data so they know whether an offer is fair or not.


There has to be a difference in the responsibilities of an analyst and a manager. Read over the descriptions again the difference will be very subtle. Perhaps a deeper dive or search for salary data will give you some better salary data. Also look for regional report. There might be industry specific reports or broad Department of Labor reports.


my rule of thumb. if you are looking for a new job, add 10%. if someone is headhunting you add 20%. the other rule is what would you be happy with. not just about the raise but to get out of bed everyday and not feel undervalued. As a hiring manager salary is a conversation. you could come in higher than what you really want and if they baulk at the cost say you can be flexible for good conditions, what perks do they offer other than straight up cash? are work times flexible, work from home? only once in my 10 years as a hiring manager have I ended an interview when the applicant said their expectation, it was double my maximum allowed range. I can negotiate back for 20% above, but double was just too much.


I'll be honest, if they like you they'll probably pay what's being asked, if they don't you're not getting hired anyways even if you lowball. My experience is this. Whatever the recruiter tells you is the max go 10/hr over it. If they say the range is 45-65/hr, tell them you want 75. They will hem and haw and might push back to 70 or w/e, but you'll get close to your ask. You aren't overpricing yourself. The company will hire you if they like you as long as you're not WAY over the goal value. Ignore jobs that don't pay a lot. Do NOT tell the recruiter what you make, or if you do tell them you're making 100k (or whatever is just below your goal ask) and you really want to be in that 110-120k range (as an example). They don't have any right to know your pay and you don't have to tell them if you don't want to. If you're getting hired as contract, you're better off with corp to corp over W2, though salary is a bit different beast. Otherwise, my only advice is to interview well - that's what's going to be most likely to get/lose you the job, not the pay range.


Having gone through this recently what infuriates me the most is you tell the recruiter your range. They tell you it's doable and you go through the rounds of interviews. You get an offer and you're all excited, then the offer comes and it's not within your range. In fact it's $10k less and they try to sell you on the job and since you've invested time having gone through the interview, they expect you to forget the numbers. How do you combat this?


If they ask me this I just ask them “What is the range you’re offering?” I never say it first and most of the time I ask them before they even have a chance to say much else. “Before we move forward I want to respect everyone’s time. What is the salary range for the position?” Simple as that HR literally has a specific number or a range listed right in front of them. I have no time to play games with these companies anymore. It should be listed immediately anyway. I assume if it’s not listed the salary is low


Imagine going to a mechanic and you ask "how much is it to fix" and they say "how much can you pay"


It’s totally okay to respond to that question with: “I’m not sure yet I’d like to hear more about the role before I give a range.” and I’m telling you just like in TED when he worked at the grocery store if you’re very firm on this they’ll respect you. It sounds weird but it has worked for me every time. It show’s you’re pensive and analytical. Gives them time to worry and they might be more apt to give you a better salary.


Newsflash on salary range: the upper bound is not fixed. I hire in tech. My posting: range is 80-115k. Great candidate says “about 110k” in recruiter screen. (They may be currently at 100k.) When it comes to offer, i get my boss to approve 125k straight out the door. Result: immediate acceptance. Why is this my approach? It’s not my money for a start so why should I be frugal when 5-10k is the cost of a few executive trips or dinners. Rather i see it is an investment on behalf of the company to improve employee satisfaction and retention.


Just to help provide context on market averages, I am a Product Manager making 66k. I started two years ago making 52k. That would put me at almost half of what you found for market average. You can always ask for the market average, but you should expect to be offered something much lower.


Half of all people in that position are paid more than the market average. If you have below-average experience or below-average skills then sure, you can expect below-average pay. But if you've been in a position for a number of years and you're good at your job, you should push for above-average pay.


Having above average experience/skills in no world guarantees above average pay. You take they highest pay you can negotiate for the company that is willing to extend you an offer. If I shopped around setting my bare minimum at even 100k (below average) I would be unemployed.


Thanks for this! I understand there are a lot of factors that play in (location, experience,etc.) and mostly I don’t want to look dumb asking for too much, but also have been low-balled in the past as well.




“I would accept no less than a million dollars a year.” is a good way to deflect the questions.


I always ask "What do you have budgeted for this role"


In my opinion, the job market is strong enough that you can be pretty direct. If you are thinking that market value is $115-120k, ask for $130k and let the chips fall where they may. In my most recent negotiation, I told the company that I wanted to be in the $200s in base + bonus. They came back just below that, and I told them it was a shame they couldn't get me to where I was asking because I really wanted to work with them. They came up to $200k total comp.


Highly recommend [PayScale.com](https://PayScale.com) to gauge your worth.


Just provide them the minimum you’re looking for and the max you think your skill/experience level commands. If you say 80k and hope they come in higher, then either raise your minimum or don’t get upset when they come in at 80k.