How to Talk About Salary at a Job Interview

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One of the most delicate moments during a job interview, so to speak, is when candidates have to talk about financial compensation for their work, meaning the salary. When some companies publish their job offer, they usually specify the salary or salary range according to the experience and / or training of the applicants. However, in other companies, this information is not provided and you cannot leave your job interview without knowing the salary they offer you. In fact, if necessary, it is one of the questions you should ask in a job interview. To deal with this issue properly, we are going to offer you a list of tips that, in addition to helping you achieve a more professional image, will also allow you to talk about salary in a natural way to reach your economic expectations.

Tips for talking about salary in a job interview

When this key moment comes during your job interview when answering this question, consider the following:

- Value yourself

Your skills, training, and experience are worth money, so you should put a price on your performance in the work you are going to do. For example, the claims of a waiter with only a few months of experience cannot be the same as those of a waiter who has worked in a Michelin-starred restaurant; or it is not the same to request a receptionist job at night than in another different shift since although the responsibilities are the same, working at night has to imply an additional income.

- Check the table of the National Statistics Institute

Don't you know how much you pay on average in the sector you want to work? Do not worry, to get an idea you can visit the tables with the annual average salaries by sectors published by the National Institute of Statistics. In this very useful web page, you can know data on the annual salary by economic activity, type of contract and occupation groups both in the public sector and in the private sector.

- Consider other additional benefits

It is true that salary can be a determining factor in accepting or rejecting a job, but you should also consider the following factors:

  • The company offers you a company car that also lets you use for personal matters.
  • The company has a nursery where you can leave your children while you work.
  • The company allows you to work certain hours or days from home, which will allow you to spend more time with your family and not waste your time in traffic jams.
  • The company offers you food stamps.
  • You can access additional economic bonuses if, in a predetermined period of time (usually annual, quarterly or monthly), you achieve goals defined by the company.
  • The company's promotions system is very optimistic and in a short time, you can access a better job with a significant salary increase.
  • To facilitate family reconciliation, the company allows you to schedule flexibility.
  • The company pays certain courses or Masters to improve your work performance.
  • Although all these elements do not offer you cash, they are additional advantages that will help you achieve greater personal and professional satisfaction.

- Do not say an exact figure

It is advisable not to say an exact figure but an interval. To justify these figures, you can say: "Given that I have 3 years of experience in this industry, that I speak English fluently and that I am licensed, according to the data offered by the INE, I consider that my salary should be between XXXX and XXXX".

- Do not negotiate until you are offered the job

Depending on the company, the company may want to negotiate your salary (unfortunately downwards), but you should not enter their game until you have a clear job offer. In this way, you will know that the company is interested in your profile and you will have more resources to reach an agreement that benefits you.

- You can explain what you earned in your previous company

If you think that's convenient, you can talk about what you earned in your old company (or the current one). Obviously, value this data very well because according to the figure it can benefit or harm you. Do not be tempted to lie about this detail. Remember that in your curriculum vitae you will have indicated that company and possibly have a reference to it. This means that perhaps the recruiter will contact your former boss to, among other things, ask him about your previous salary. Can you imagine the image you would give if they discover that you lied? If you lied about this, would you also lie about other things you said during the interview?

- If you have no idea how much to ask, use a general response

If you really don't know what you should charge, you can say something like: "I would like to charge the same as any of your current employees who have the same training, experience, and skills as me."

- Never say: "I don't know"

This is the worst answer you can give since in addition to leaving everything in the hands of the company, it will also indicate your lack of preparation for the personal interview and possibly your ignorance of the sector in which you want to work.

Should the aspect of salary be treated after the interview?

One of the mistakes that some people make is to send a letter of thanks to the recruiter or Human Resources team focusing on the salary or trying to negotiate in writing what was not known to negotiate in person. Never try to do this, you will make a bad impression on your possible future company. What you can do is talk about the salary after the interview only if the company contacts you. This will mean that you did the personal interview well, they liked your profile and you have enough options to get a contract. However, keep in mind everything we said in the previous section to negotiate your salary properly.

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