Re: Negotiating for salary and enhancers

Subject: Re: Negotiating for salary and enhancers
From: "Pro TechWriter" <pro -dot- techwriter -at- gmail -dot- com>
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Date: Fri, 23 Nov 2007 10:42:29 -0500

> Hi:

You said:

It's entirely possible I'll be offered a staff position after having
> been working agency contract assignments for the last dozen years or so.
> I've already been told that the salary range is well below what I make
> as a contractor but it's close to what I'd want if I can get them to
> come up with some enhancers

Good, I can see that you understand that salary isn't everything (although
it is important). I usually start this discussion with "We all know that
total compensation consists of more than salary."

I agree with what others have said: the time to talk about this is now, and
with the manager first if possible. Make sure to cover all the positive
aspects (love my job, really enjoy the people and the work, challenged and
interested, but will be giving up some money and I have bills to pay, my
skills are worth X$ even in a salaried position, and "how can we work
together on this?")

Does the position come with a bonus? That is one way to recover income that
you may lose in actual salary. Make sure you cover the conditions for the
bonus if there is one and that you can meet the requirements for it. One of
my postions came with a significant bonus, and the hiring manager told me in
all the years he had worked there, they had never missed one. That was true
for me too, and more than made up for the salary being lower than I had
I don't know if you are federal or state agency, but if federal, you might
want to bring up the possiblity of a grade increase later, if not now. Ask
the employer to write more than one grade into the job description (i.e.,
grade 11 - 13) so you have "somewhere to go" for a promotion, which would
also include a salary increase.

Additional vacation time might be easier to get in "regular business" than
from a government agency. Although some folks said that extra vacation time
is hard to get in a large corporation, I have not found that to be true. As
a matter of fact, I know someone who started out at Verizon with four weeks
of vacation as a condition of employment. This was usually only available to
someone with five years tenure. It never hurts to ask.

As I have gotten older, time off is more important to me than an extra few $
in salary. I have turned down jobs that only allowed 15 days of PTO a year
(sick and vacation time lumped together). I work hard, and need time to
recharge my batteries.

Signing bonus money is good to ask for and some government agencies have
money in place for this due to the shortage of IT professionals. Ask for it.

Whatever you end up asking for, make sure that the details are conveyed to
you in writing. Verbal agreements are worth the paper they are not written
on :-)

My experience with negotiations have been very good. I have, several times,
gotten salary and benefits better than my hiring manager :-) because, I
think, I was a better negotiator.

Good luck with the new position.


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FWD: Negotiating for salary and enhancers: From: TECHWR-L Administrator

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