In this series, I have been sharing my advice on a frequently pondered topic; how to tell if a job is right for you.
When it comes to weighing up a job offer, there’s no doubt that the salary on offer is an important factor.
Obviously, the salary is significant for financial reasons. But what about beyond this? What types of job opportunities are worth sacrificing a larger paycheque for? And what are the repercussions of taking a lower offer?
Let’s have a look into how to assess the salary on offer, and decide if the job is right for you.
What salary is fair?
Whilst some job advertisements do specify the salary, a great majority do not. So, you may find yourself wondering what salary to expect.
What is the value of your knowledge and expertise in today’s market? Answering this question is important, yet complicated.
One way to get an indication is to ask those who know best: recruiters. Recruiters work with a huge range of companies across the given industry, making their estimates quite well-informed.
The dark side of being underpaid
Whilst financial benefits are important, there may be times when you see yourself accepting a salary lower than expected.
However, this decision can have greater repercussions than just a smaller pay cheque.
A lower salary can indicate that there will be fewer job role responsibilities. So, if the salary is somewhat lower, chances are that you will feel “stunted” in the new role.
What’s more, taking a lower salary can put your future at a disadvantage. Think about it. Your most recent salary will often “set the bar” for future salaries. So, once you have accepted an offer under your true value, it can be hard to get back on track.
It’s a two-way street
Many candidates tell me that they are willing to take a pay cut for the right job. And this is a good thing. It demonstrates flexibility and incentive.
But shouldn’t flexibility go both ways? Whilst businesses may not be able to meet your salary expectations, there are other benefits which could make things fair for both parties. Don’t shy away from asking what may be possible to create a balance.
Negotiating in new currencies
If you’ve ever worked in a new country, you will undoubtedly know the challenge of assessing a salary in a whole new currency. As if it wasn’t already complicated enough!
After making a currency comparison, you will also need to take the cost of living into account.
One of the most important questions to ask yourself is, “Am I okay with accepting this salary?”.
Whilst it’s always important to know your rights and entitlements, judging the salary is a subjective process. What others may consider “inadequate” may be substantial enough for you.
On the contrary, you may have a lot of financial responsibilities to meet, and thereby require a salary to cover those costs. It’s important to know what you need, and knowing where that lies in the salary bracket.
Know what’s what!
Overall, it’s all about having a well-informed and thoughtful approach. Be well-researched, set yourself reasonable expectations, and always have good reasons for accepting a below-average salary. If you do this, you will never be disappointed with your choice in the long run, which will create higher engagement on your part.