How to Answer the Question “What salary do you expect?”

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Usually, job seekers, answering the recruiter’s question about wages, are afraid of two scenarios. For example, they don’t want to indicate a smaller salary than it was budgeted by the company. This happens because the recruiter may think that the job applicant is not confident in his or her skills.

The second scenario — an applicant is afraid of making the wrong impression because of too high expectations. The recruiter may think that the qualification of the applicant is too high for the position, or he or she can’t adequately assess his or her qualification level.

First of all, study the job market to determine the upper and lower salary limit for the position. It is also useful to communicate with colleagues in other companies and review the salary offers on job sites.

You can also ask a recruiter the salary question. For example: “I can be flexible in this matter. Career prospects are much more important than my salary. Can you tell me the salary range that is provided for this position? ”

Another strategy that can be used during the interview is to tell about the salary that you had before, at your previous job, how it corresponded to the work responsibilities and why you expect more from the new job.

Moreover, it’s important how the company representative and HR Manager will react to the salary expectations of the applicant. A good manager is interested in learning the long-term plans of the applicant. A bad manager will end an interview if the applicant’s salary expectations do not meet the budget of the company.

After the recruiter has offered a salary, it’s recommended to ask about other remunerations offered by the company – bonuses, travel financing, lunches and so on.

Astor Professional Search, a leading recruiting firm based in Chicago, offers you various strategies that can be applied when answering “what salary do you expect” question:

  • Shift the focus of the conversation. If you don’t want to answer this question, you can try to ask “additional” questions, and thus shift the emphasis in the conversation, and then steer the conversation in the right direction. The interviewer will be distracted and may not revert to this issue, but do not count on it, especially if the interview is arranged by professional headhunters. The examples of such distracting questions can be: “First, can you give me detailed information about the career-building opportunities and are there prospects of revising wages over time?” or “Before answering this question, can you tell me whether the company offers a social package?”
  • Concrete answer. If there’s a minimum sum of money which will be satisfactory for you to start working, it’s better to be honest and indicate it. Thus, the employer will know your financial requirements, and if they are not able to satisfy them, your candidacy will no longer be considered, therefore, it will save you nerves and time.

Some useful tips to be interviewed successfully

Applying these simple tips you will be able to pass a job interview successfully.

  • Prepare the questions you would like to ask the company representative. This will show your willingness to work in the company and give you a chance to get valuable information about the work. Ask about the specifics of the work, the company’s management and so on.
  • Think about the answers to possible questions of the employer.
  • Be ready for deeper questions within the professional sphere, as well as for questions related to the specifics of the enterprise.
  • If the interview was successful, the logical result of it will be a job offer. At the end of the interview, it makes sense to clarify when you should wait for a call or email with a final decision.
  • You can also ask whether you meet the requirements for a vacant position. Be moderately persistent when trying to find out the results of the interview. You shouldn’t call daily to the office of the company trying to find out the results of the job interview.
  • Write down the names and email addresses of the company representatives who conducted the interview or exchange business cards with them. It’s quite normal for many large organizations if the applicants write letters of gratitude after the interview. You can remind about your candidacy in such a way.

You may be invited for a second interview but this does not guarantee that you will get a job in the company. Nevertheless, take this chance, prepare well for the questions, emphasize your professional approach and competence to convince the employer that you are the ideal candidate for the vacant position.

Written by Susan Craig, HR manager,
personal trainee in management,
freelance writer and active guest contributor

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About The Author

Don Georgevich

Author of 4 top selling interviewing books, speaker, and job interview strategy coach. The one person everyone calls on before a difficult job interview.

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