Even though nursing school teaches you many critical medical skills, it may not teach you the skills that will make you more money. One such skill is negotiation. Unfortunately, many nurses don't like to talk about their salaries and money, even in job interviews. This leads to numerous nurses being underpaid.
Employers expect you to negotiate the salary offer they make you during your interview. If you don't negotiate it, you are losing a large sum of money in the long term. Hence, in this article, we will discuss how to negotiate your salary so you can get paid your worth!
Tips For Negotiating Your Salary.
- Know That Negotiation Is Normal:
It is vital to remove the stigma associated with money and negotiation from your mind. The interviewer is expecting you to negotiate your salary. They have a range in which they can pay you, and most often, you will be offered the lower amount of the range.
Hence, not negotiating can leave a great deal of money on the table and make you seem passive and unconfident. In addition, the future raises that you will receive will be a percentage increase in your salary. Hence, if you start with a lower wage, the raises you will receive will also be lower.
So understand that negotiation is standard and, in a way, essential for you!
- Know Your Numbers:
When you go for an interview, you must do your homework regarding the average salary the job position offers. You can search internet databases and websites like salary.com, pay scale, etc. Knowing your post's average wage will help you determine if you are being paid fairly.
Also, if you are shifting to a new place for the job, understanding the expenses that you will make monthly is essential as well. This will help you know the minimum amount of money you will require every month. In addition, this will help you understand the minimum amount of salary that you need to get.
- Keep Your Resume Up To Date:
A good resume will help you get a higher preference for the job. Hence it is essential to keep up to date with everything you have achieved.
For example, you may be a new RN, but if you have some management experience and strong leadership and communication skills, then adding this to your resume will strengthen your profile and act as leverage for you to demand a higher salary
- Know What's Legal:
It is legal for your interviewer to ask some questions, but it is also illegal for them to ask others. One of those questions is, "what was your previous salary?'
Yes! Believe it or not, your employer cannot ask you any questions about your salary history in many states. These laws are aimed at ending pay discrimination between genders, but these laws are beneficial regardless of your gender. You can check out the list of states that have banned pay history questions here.
- Timing Matters:
Never reveal your salary expectations first. Instead, let the interviewer tell you their offer. Here whoever names a number first loses the game. You must make them tell you their salary budget or give you a number.
Also, if they tell you the number in the middle of the interview, don't rush into answering immediately. Instead, take your time and ask them some questions you might have regarding the scope and hours of work. And then, if everything seems fine, give your answer.
- Ask 15-20% Of the Original Offer:
It is crucial to make a counteroffer within an appropriate range of the original proposal. The golden rule is to ask for an amount 15 to 20% higher than the initial offer. For example, if you were offered $50,000, then countering with $60,000 (20% of $50,000 will be $10,000), or a little less, is acceptable.
But suppose you ask for an unreasonably high number, like $80,000 for an original offer of $50,000. In that case, it will be considered that you are negotiating in bad faith. Moreover, it will create a wrong impression on your employers.
Also, you must be ready to leave the job if you are not getting your preferred salary. At times, it may leverage the employer to increase the amount, but even if it doesn't, you must not settle for lower pay when you know you are worth a lot more.
- Negotiate Benefits:
There are some places where you are offered a fixed salary and cannot negotiate it. However, you can still arrange to get higher job benefits in these situations.
You can negotiate on the amount of paid time off, relocation bonuses, 401k benefits, stock options, sign-on bonuses, and other elements.
Negotiating your salary will give you a better financial start, allowing you to clear your student loans and start investing in your future. So make sure you keep these tips in mind when you go for your following job interview and get paid what you are worth. Otherwise, catching up with a good salary may take a long time.