Show me the $! Salary Expectations & You

Picture this. You’re at a job interview. You’re charming everyone with professional poise and company knowledge. Everything is going according to plan. Even that nasty, no eye contact person has cracked what could be defined as a smile! The session is going extremely well until the employer asks that one loaded question:

“What are your salary expectations?”

If unprepared, those 5 words can kill any chances of a job offer.

What’s in a wage?

It’s always an awkward thing, having to put a price on you, face to face. It’s funny how many people have no qualms advertising how poorly paid they are, but when asked what that number may be, they clam right up!

How does one find out their worth?  That really depends on three key factors; what you can afford to be making, your previous experience and what’s considered standard in your industry.

The following website will provide you with national wages by occupation:

http://www.payscale.com/research/CA/Country=Canada/Salary

This website might be a good starting point to see what the average wage of someone in your field would be. Keep these wages in mind when considering your own salary expectations.

Whenever possible, always opt for a salary range i.e. “35 000 – 40 000 per year” or rate “19 to 22 dollars per hour.” Always consider your level of experience with what you need to survive, but also something that will allow you to exist comfortably.

So, how should your expectations read within a cover letter? Show that you’ve given this question some thought; “After careful consideration regarding the position requirements in relation to my current experience relevant competences, I would aspire toward a salary range between ___ and ____.”

You could also mention how this salary range could also be negotiated upon receiving a job offer, or once a probation period was completed.

By utilizing the salary range route, you leave room for flexibility. Say if you were content to make $18 an hour and the employer was willing to give you $20 per hour, then a rate range between $18-22 per hour would be put you in a great situation.

Give your salary expectations some thoughtful consideration.

As much as you want the job, you don’t want to get a second one in order to survive.

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Lidia Siino is the Professional Development & Communications Specialist for MCACES, the Mohawk College Association of Continuing Education Students in Hamilton, Ontario. She has over 12 years of experience working with adult learners and post-secondary students on their respective career development journeys. If you like what you read, be sure to follow our blog and share with your network!

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“Know when to hold em’, fold em’ walk away or run!” How to navigate salary negotiations

Most of the time when people leave their job it’s for one of two reasons, a conflict of interest and/or money. So what happens when you’re asked in an interview about your salary expectations?

 The question usually goes one of two ways: 

  1. What were you paid in your last position?
  2. What are you’re salary expectations for this position?

 Both these questions are asked to gauge whether your expectations are in line with what the company can afford and/or if you’re realistic in your expectations and will therefore be happy in the current position. Some employers also ask this question to draw comparisons to similar companies in the same industry.

 Now this is where research comes in big time!

 How to handle question 1. (What were you paid in your last position?)

 The problem with question 1, is that you could pigeon hole yourself into continuing with the same salary as before, which really defeats the point of leaving that job in the first place! So without being cagy, answer honestly with a BUT

 Your answer:

Well at my last company I was paid XYZ, however they were a smaller company with a large overhead, as well it was also an entry-level position for me at the time. Now that I have several years of skills and experience in my field I am now rated at ABC level of compensation.

 So how do you come up with your figure?

When you come up with your figure make sure you back it up! Let the employer know that these figures are based on facts and not wishful thinking.

 These are a few websites that will help get you a potential salary range:

 www.workingincanada.gc.ca

The Linkedin job section

http://ca.indeed.com/

National Occupation Classification (NOC) http://www.hrsdc.gc.ca/eng/jobs/lmi/noc/

http://monsterca.salary.com/CanadaSalaryWizard/LayoutScripts/Swzl_NewSearch.aspx

http://www.payscale.com/resources.aspx?nc=lp_calculator_canada01

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Tune in next time to see how to handle question 2!

 

Elaine Logie is a student of the Career Consultant Certificate and MCACESBlogger. Like what you read? please share with your friends! Follow our blog today!

What are YOU worth?

Picture this.

You’re at a job interview. You’re charming everyone with professional poise and company knowledge. Everything is going according to plan. Even that nasty, no eye contact person has cracked what could be defined as a smile! The session is going extremely well until the employer asks that one loaded question:

“What are your salary expectations?”

If unprepared, those 5 words can kill any chances of a job offer.Image

What’s in a wage?

It’s always an awkward thing, having to put a price on you, face to face. Its funny how many people have no qualms about advertising how poorly paid they are, but when asked what that number may be, they clam right up!

How does one find out their worth?  That really depends on two factors; what you can afford to be making plus what kind of previous experience you have.

Depending on your geographic location, you can review this information online. For example, in the province of Ontario, salaries for a variety of occupations can be located through the following website:

http://www.sse.gov.on.ca/medt/investinontario/en/Pages/communities_wagebenefits.aspx?mun_name=3525005&topic=1 

This site might be a good starting point to see what the average wage of someone in your field would be.

In terms of indicating what your salary expectations are, I would always opt for a salary range i.e. “35 000 – 40 000 per year” or rate “15-20 dollars per hour.” Always consider your level of experience with what you need to survive, but also something that will allow you to exist comfortably.

So, how should your expectations read on a cover letter? Show that you’ve given this question some thought;

“With thoughtful consideration regarding the position requirements in relation to my current knowledge, transferable skills and relevant competences in this role, I would aspire toward a salary range between ___ and ____.”

Of course, you could also mention how this range could also be negotiated upon receiving a job offer.

If you go the range route, you leave room for flexibility. For example, if you were content to make a starting salary of 19$ an hour and the employer was willing to pay you a starting salary of 21$ per hour, then a sound entry level rate  of $19-23 per hour would be successful.

Give your salary expectation serious consideration. You want to get the job, but not have to get a second one to survive.

Lidia SIino is the Professional Development & Communications Specialist for MCACES, the Mohawk College Association of Continuing Education Students in Hamilton, Ontario. She also teaches in the Mohawk College Career Consultant Certificate Program. MCACESBlogs providers readers with job search and career management advice. Like what you see? Be sure to follow MCACESBlogs todayI Happy reading!