Negotiating Salary

“Of the employers we surveyed, 100 percent told us that it is acceptable for job applicants to attempt to negotiate a job offer. Of these employers 90 percent told us that their initial offer was less than they were willing to pay because they expected the applicant to negotiate.”   - Source: How to Get Paid What You’re Worth

How to Negotiate

We encourage you to practice communicating about negotiation with your career advisor. Negotiating can feel very challenging and we are here to support you! One common negotiation scenario is outlined below. For detailed information on salary negotiation, check out our Online Salary Negotiation Workshop, and the "How to Negotiate Your Starting Salary: Inside Tips and Mythbusters" Webinar from the UMN Alumni Assocation. 

Sample Scenario

Employer :“We would like to offer you the position with a salary of $XX,XXX.”

Simple Negotiation Tactics:

  • “Is that number firm?” or “Is the offer negotiable?”
  • “Based on my extensive experience in the field and the level of responsibility this position requires, would you consider a salary closer to $XX,XXX?”

Additional Tips for Success

  • Don’t negotiate when they call with the offer. Ask for some time to think about it and call them back to negotiate when you feel ready.
  • Remind them what you bring to the position–your skills and experiences.
  • Negotiate items other than salary such as vacation time, flexible schedules or a signing bonus.

Avoid Salary Discussions Before an Offer

If an employer pushes you to discuss salary before an offer consider one of the following responses so don't you price yourself too low or to high:

  • “I’m sure you have a salary range for the position, could you tell me about the pay structure?”
  • “I’m confident that we can find a salary that works for both of us; right now I would like to focus on making sure I am the best fit for the position.”