Much has been said about how terrifying the salary negotiation process is for potential employees, but it can also be fraught with tension for even the most experienced human resources professionals. Negotiating salary is an incredibly important part of the hiring process, and there's a lot that can go wrong if it's not carefully considered.
Here are some things to keep in mind the next time you need to negotiate:
Do: Be Very Specific About Salary
It's become a temptation to many in the human resources field to dance around the issue of salary. They may wait until the employee themselves states a number, or they may intentionally try to avoid stating a number directly -- but this only wastes the time of both parties. An exact answer to the "salary question" should always be specified, even if it must be a range. This is to the benefit of both parties: human resources deals only with those willing to accept salaries of that amount and employees do not waste time on an interview process for a position ill-suited to them.
Don't: Mention the Prior Employee's Salary
It may seem as though it's the perfect way to get an "anchor" point, but it's really irrelevant. Your prior employee was an entirely different individual. They were hired at a different time in the company's development and they negotiated their own package. If the prior employee's salary was higher than the salary you are offering now, you'll need to justify the lowered price point. If the prior employee's salary was lower than the salary you are offering now, you're only giving your prospective, new employee more bargaining power by implying that they are worth more.
Do: Avoid Giving Too Many Concessions
If you're not a very good negotiator, you may be inclined to end negotiations early by throwing in perks, benefits and salary hikes that aren't strictly necessary. It's better to derive a fair package of salary and benefits and to stick as close to it as possible. Don't be the first to offer a concession unless you have a strategy to back that concession up.
Don't: Push for More than You Should Ask
Conversely, If you're a very good negotiator, the temptation can be there to "strong arm" a prospective employee into a low-balled salary, if only out of loyalty to the company. While that may technically win you the negotiations, it's likely to lose you the employee long-term; it won't be long until they look for other prospects. In general, a fair and equitable agreement is always best for both parties, if you want to avoid unnecessary employee churn and training time.
Do: Get Help Negotiating Salary
Even when you do everything right, the process of negotiating salary can still feel difficult. Let a creative staffing and recruiting agency help you out by handling salary negotiation for you. Contact Artisan Talent today to see how we can help. We have the information you need to make educated hiring decisions.