How to negotiate for a salary when offered a job

How to negotiate for a salary when offered a job

Getting a new job is exciting. Most people become stuck when they are asked to come and negotiate a salary package. Most people are unprepared to negotiate for a pay package even if they are on a job hunt.  Once you get a job offer here are some of the hints you need to take into consideration as you go through the job offer.

Salary negotiation tips

  1. When you get an offer letter do not rush to sign it. Take your time and go through the offer.
  2. Highlight all the things the employer is offering. Do a total of the package even for the items not given in monetary terms e.g. a company vehicles
  3. Do not bass your expectations on what you are currently earning. Base your package on the value that you anticipate to bring to a role.
  4. Take into consideration what the market pays for similar roles and place yourself in the range depending on your skillset.
  5. Do not be greedy. Your demands must be realistic
  6. Do a background check on how the company offering you a job has been performing versus competitors. Check if they will be able to afford and sustain your salary demands. There is no point in getting a huge salary package that you are only able to earn for a few months, and thereafter the company closes or can not afford it.
  7. Depending on the type of organisation you can include other perks outside the salary notably school fees, education loans, motor vehicle, and housing loan.

How do you negotiate a higher salary?

By higher salary, means highly competitive salary. A salary probably in the 75th percentage range for your type of role. Here is how you can get a higher salary.

  1. Start the negotiations with what value you will bring to the organisation
  2. Agree on key targets upfront and if you achieve them your salary can be adjusted to a certain level
  3. If you put the above two points on the table it is very difficult for a normal employer to refuse
  4. Make all agreed items are put in the contract. Do not be fooled when they say do not worry it is our normal policy school fees will be paid to you as an example. Demand that all terms and conditions be put in the contract.

How do I reject a job offer?

There are signs that show your new employer is not serious and may breach the employment contract in the future. Here are some of the signs that show the employer is not genuine:

  1. Bad employers do not want to commit in writing to terms of employment they are offering or promising you. Once you see such tendencies do not take the job offer. It is a clear sign that more problems are awaiting you.
  2. When an employer starts shifting dates when some of the benefits will take effect. As an example when the employer says your new car will only be available six months from now. In the meantime please use a pool car. With cashflow challenges you may end up using the pool car forever.

If you take the above advice when dealing with a new job offer, you may find it easy to then sign the contract.

Memory Nguwi is an Occupational Psychologist, Data Scientist, Speaker, & Managing Consultant- Industrial Psychology Consultants (Pvt) Ltd a management and human resources consulting firm. Phone +263 4 481946-48/481950/2900276/2900966 or cell number +263 77 2356 361 or email:  or visit our website at

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