With tightening tensions in the U.S. job market, career professionals may feel they are losing leverage with an employer on key issues such as compensation, benefits, and benefits.
That’s really not the case for employees who bring talent and tenacity to the workplace – and to the bargaining table when they strike deals with new employers.
“There are more opportunities for negotiation than the potential employee or employer realizes,” said Venn negotiation founder Christine McKay told TheStreet in an interview. “In my years of trading, I’ve seen people negotiate annual training, 401k matching, charitable donations, and extra vacations. Not to mention negotiating where to work and how often you must be in the office.”
New talent also negotiates benefits including relocation services, apartments, cars, home closing costs, credit cards, travel points and cards, and more.
“Salary is only part of the compensation equation,” McKay told TheStreet.
Issues that should be negotiated by new employees
Learning that you’ve landed a good job is a proud moment for an employee. But learning that you’ve earned the salary, benefits, and perks negotiation is even sweeter.
“The key to finding a good fit is that both parties feel like they got a fair deal,” said Relay payments chief of staff Amy Zimmerman. “Job candidates need to be aware of their market value when negotiating. If they are reasonable, they are more likely to get what they ask for.
What should be a priority for new hires? These eight questions should be on the table, according to Shapiro Institute of Negotiations managing partner Andres Lares.
· A signing bonus or a performance bonus during annual interviews
Home office allowance or reimbursement
A budget for professional development courses or education reimbursement
Additional support within the team
Coverage of childcare costs
Flexible hours or arrangement
· Moving expenses covered
· Additional PTO or vacation days.
When addressing these issues in a job negotiation, think about who you are trying to persuade.
“Think about who you are negotiating/trying to influence,” Lares told TheStreet. “Is it HR or your boss? If you need to discuss this with HR, consider discussing it with your boss first. He or she can help you potentially influence another department or at least justify the reasons for the request.
Bring these tips to the bargaining table as well when negotiating payouts and benefits.
Script your argument in advance. Often, negotiation conversations are tied to emotions, especially when you’re advocating for something in your favor, Lares advised.
“Being emotional can make or break their decision,” he noted. “It is essential to think strategically and write different scenarios to see how you will react if the argument goes in your favor or against. By writing in advance, you will avoid any rash decisions or responses.
Understand the big picture and the other sides. When writing your pitch for the added benefit, think about what the employer will say.
“The ability to sense other people’s emotions, coupled with the ability to imagine what someone else is thinking, plays an important role in the negotiation process,” Lares noted. “Think about what concerns your employer. Are they worried that others will start asking for similar benefits? “
Also include benefits of additional benefits. “For example, working from home will give you more time to get things done without having a long commute or a home office allowance or reimbursement will allow you to get the items you need to do your job best. of your abilities,” Lares said.
Negotiate job description. Make sure the job description matches what you want to do and includes activities that fill in the gaps in your expertise.
“Essentially, that’s what the company agrees to do for you,” McKay said. “Your employer’s responsibility to you goes beyond giving you a paycheck. Make sure they will also develop your skills.
Negotiate based on value, not cost or time. Create a spreadsheet for yourself and estimate the total value of the offer.
“Determine which elements add the most value for you and the hiring company,” McKay added. “If you understand the value equation, you will elevate your position and theirs. You will want to avoid trading one item at a time and losing value in the process. Everything in an offer can be quantified to some degree. Run the calculations and negotiate the assumptions from there.
To be realistic
Above all else, go into any employment negotiation knowing that it is a give and take scenario and that not all of your demands will be met.
“Know your numbers and quantify the dollar value of each item you request,” said Next Level Perks CEO Lauren Winans. “It allows you to be better prepared to draw the line with your demands as well as when it comes time to accept the final offer.”
It’s also a good idea to plant some of these seeds with any professional recruiter working with you. “That way the recruiter won’t be surprised by your counter offer,” Winans said.
Additionally, many companies are more willing to change salaries or signing bonuses than to address benefits.
“So if you can negotiate the salary or bonus to a higher amount equal to the value of other benefits than you were hoping for, that’s definitely a win,” Winans noted.