Westhill Consulting & Employment How to answer the question ‘What’s Your Salary Requirement?’


You may find yourself trapped whenever asked the question about compensation. It is supposed to be a general warning not to answer the question since it is the biggest scam question a company do for their own benefit.

Giving too high amount may lead you to not land on the job, but too low then you just labeled yourself. And if ever you take the job, make sure to make up for this salary setback the next time you’re negotiating your salary.

Almost all job applications require to state the desired salary of the applicant. This is for their own benefit because they now gain the total control.

Kip Kipley, director of human resources for WorldatWork, an association for HR professionals said human-resources executives believe that requesting salary information in advance helps them find the best candidates for openings.

This is the reason why hiring managers and HR reps want to name your price so do not fall for it and instead there is a way around the dreaded salary requirement question.

Westhill Consulting Career and Employment, Australia provides you the following tips in answering the said question.

Understand Your True Value

Get a better understanding of how much you should be making based on your expertise and skills by doing a research beforehand.

“It's a strength of a candidate to have a solid market understanding of their salary value,” says Megan Zengerle, VP of People Operations at Creative Live. “This can be achieved by understanding what other companies are offering or paying for the role and I always encourage candidates to talk to their peers to ascertain this information.”

Don’t Leave the Salary Requirement Blank

Don’t skip the salary requirement if you are applying online.

Generally, “no response will work against the job seeker. It appears the job seeker is ignoring what the employer asks,” says Larry Goldsmith, CWDP, job search and career strategist.

The worst thing that could happen is your resume will be filtered out by recruiters who need to narrow down their stack of candidates and the best would be the rest of your application will be intriguing enough anyway, but here is a warning! Do not risk it.

If they Ask You, Divert!

After knowing your number, they will use this to their benefit and chances are they’ll press you for it. Postpone the discussion until after the employer has shown solid interest in you.

“Stall by saying it depends on factors that we haven't discussed yet, like benefits and many intangibles,” says Rich Grant, president of the Maine College Career Consortium. “Then, ask, what is the range you expect to bring someone in with?”

Offer a Broad Range If You Absolutely Have to Answer

To avoid being lowballed, just offer a broad range when push comes to shove.

“When asked the question, a candidate should specify his or her own range - and that range should be such that its low end should be close to the high end of the employer's range, i.e. the candidate's range 'hooks' over the high end of the employer's range,” Rick Dacri, executive recruiter and author of Uncomplicating Management.

“Research can usually identify the employer's range, especially if the candidate asks the interviewer where they consider their salaries fit relative to their industry standard.”

Again, the Key is to be Vague

“Tell the company that you have no specific salary requirements, but that your pay has been in the X to Y range in the past few years, Mark Jaffe, a Minneapolis-based executive recruiter suggests. Give yourself a spread of about $20,000 to $30,000,”the Wall Street Journal reports.

"Say that you consider yourself flexible and are open to anything that's reasonable, but in recent years, your salary has ranged from $100,000 to $120,000," Jaffe says.

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