7 secrets to negotiate salary

Congratulations you have cleared almost all the rounds of your dream job interview, just one final round is left but you are still not aware of the salary you are going to get. After giving some thought you decided to talk about paycheck in the final round of the interview because you are afraid you might be working for peanuts, here are 3 takes of your attempt at salary negotiation

Take I

Interviewer: Hello __ how are you doing?

You: I am doing good. I just need a 12 LPA package then will I be better?

Interviewer: What? Get out!

Result – You also lost the job

Take II

Interviewer: So, what are your expectations from the job?

You: Nothing just give me lots of money I will be good

Interviewer: What? Get out!

Result – You also lost the job

Take III

Interviewer: So, what are your salary expectations?

You: I want a 120% hike from the base package offered

Interviewer: What? Get out!

Result – You also lost the job again

Three takes and different scenarios but the result is always the same, where do you think you are going wrong? You are not the only one going for salary negotiation according to procurement tactics "43% of all people have asked for a raise in their current job position." So, what are you doing wrong? In the first case, the interviewer did not even ask anything related to the job let alone salary so jumping to the salary was the worst possible idea. In the second take, the interviewers asked about job expectations, and telling salary is your motivating factor could give the impression of a very shallow person, sure money could be one of the motivating factors but mentioning just that gives the impression that you have no idea about the job position and are in it only for the money factor. In the third case yes you were asked about the salary but a 120% hike on what basis? You were asked about the expectations answering absolute figures and using words like want for such a huge number did not do anything good for you.

How does salary negotiation work ?

Working for a lower pay does not fascinate the minds of candidates initially, after all as students we often hear packages of 1Cr or 2Cr in the news headlines wanting that to be us. The idea of a good salary is embedded in our minds and thus, we are inclined toward negotiating for a raise. According to salary.com "Those who negotiate can increase their salary by over 7%". Hence negotiating for the salary is not a sin but it is for everyone?


Freshers just out of college do not want to participate in the salary negations as they are looking for a start and the job market is not very rewarding to employees with no work experience. At entry level job one values learning higher than a salary.


A very interesting data from a blog by Harvard Business Review named 'Nice Girls Don't Ask it' mentioned that women do not generally ask for a salary negotiation, the article stated "women had simply accepted the employer's initial salary offer; in fact, only 7% had attempted to negotiate. But 57% of their male counterparts—or eight times as many men as women—had asked for more."

Offers with other perks

Work environment, work-life balance, health benefits, and quality of work apart from salaries these things also matter a lot and for some salary is not the top priority these are. Most people leave their high-paying job for a better work-life balance hence, for them, salary negotiation rarely comes into the picture. If we talk about this generation to be specific remote work has changed the way today's employees look at salary.

How do I negotiate?

  1. Don't be upfront

We don't want to leave the impression that you are in this just for money hence don't directly start talking about the salary, you can be subtle about the reward of your work. According to PayScale "Workers with low job satisfaction are more likely to ask for a raise (54 percent) than those with high job satisfaction (41 percent)", you do not want to look dissatisfied with your job offer and jump to a salary hike 2 mins in the interview. Keep in mind that appearing dissatisfied does not help your better pay as according to the same survey by PayScale ``only 19 percent of people with low job satisfaction receive the amount they asked for, whereas 44 percent of workers with high job satisfaction receive the amount they requested." So, playing hard to get does not help here.

  1. Do not answer till asked

If you are asked about the salary then only answer do not twist random questions into salary negotiators like what we saw in take I. Instead, wait till they discuss the salary which they will eventually, so you do not need to be quick with your arguments regarding salary.

  1. Delayed is not denied

One trick experts believe is to delay the salary discussion as much as you can, better to bring it at the last round of the interview. If the question of salary comes in between any round it is better to focus on the skills and let them talk about the salary later. You do not have to kill your chances of negotiation by saying money does not matter to you at all, instead, you have to imply that salary is not your priority but it matters for sure. Keep in mind the more interviewer spends time with you the more they can to assess your skills, delaying the talk can give them a clear representation of your skills and can help the salary negotiation later on.

  1. Let them answer first

If you are negotiating on the salary, it is better to know what value you are bidding against. You do not want to say some unexpected figure like in Take III. First, ask them what their plans are for your role. Companies often set a fixed budget around a single job position and if you answer without knowing the initial budget you might end up losing the job offer too.

  1. Do not set unrealistic expectations

You are a fresher with a limited skill set and you go like "give me $ 10 million", calm down, this is not a robbery. You are asking for a salary not demanding a loan from a bank so control the figures, do proper research about the company and your industry pay, and set your expectations around that. Never mention some insane numbers and never mention numbers without proper research.

  1. Evaluate the job offer

Your salary vs other perks, often you have to choose between them, you do not want to lose your entire job with better perks just because you were fixated on the salary, instead, just evaluate your needs and wants, whether you want a high paying job or are you ready to settle for a little less for work-life balance, environment, prospects, and career progression. According to Ergonomic Trends ", 72% of employees consider work-life balance to be very important when looking for a new job."

  1. Have competing offers

A salary negotiation is more likely to work in your favour if you have a Best Alternative to Negotiated Agreement (BATNA). Plan your time in job market in such a way that you have multiple offers coming in within a small window so that you can leverage them and decide which one is best for you based on all the variables.


Now we know that jumping right to the salary and asking for a raise is not a wise choice, however with proper tricks negotiation does work and they can help increase your initial pay range, just remember one thing do not bet your 100% on the salary negotiation even if you are unable to get the desired raise to try to look at the positive side of the job profile because, in the end, your salary decision lies with the interviewer.