How Much To Ask For When You’re Negotiating Salary

How Much To Ask For When You’re Negotiating Salary
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Negotiating your salary isn’t easy, and one of the biggest hurdles is knowing how much to ask for. As a general rule of thumb, your number should be 10 to 20 per cent more than what you’re earning now.

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Maybe a potential employer asks you for a salary range, and you’re not sure what to tell them. Or maybe they toss out a number and it seems low, but you don’t know how much more to negotiate. Either way, experts say as a general rule, it’s appropriate to ask for 10 to 20 per cent more than your current salary. As workplace expert Lynn Taylor explained to Business Insider:

That means if you’re making $50,000 a year now, you can easily ask for $55,000 to $60,000 without seeming greedy or getting laughed at. “If the original offer is on the low side of the scale, you have more leverage,” Taylor explains. “If you get an offer for 20% over your current salary, you can still negotiate for more — ask for an additional 5% — but know that you’re already in good stead.”

Keep in mind, this is only general rule of thumb. Maybe the company you’re interviewing with has a significantly lower budget than your current employer — or maybe it’s much higher. Maybe there’s no room for negotiating at all.

A better method is definitely to research the company and the average pay for your skills and experience. But even average incomes can be an iffy metric. Sometimes earning more comes down to factors totally outside of skills and experience.

But if you’re completely stumped on how much to ask for, this rule of thumb is a good start. If your employer tosses out the first number, here’s another rule of thumb: Clarke University says most companies can budget 15 to 20 per cent more than what they initially offer you. Again, it’s a generalisation, but it’s useful if you’re looking for a ballpark. For more advice, head to Business Insider’s article at the link below.

How Much Money to Ask for in a Salary Negotiation [Business Insider]


  • – Ready salary guides
    – Determine where you fit within the salary range based on years experience/qualifications
    – Put your figure forward and explain how you came to that conclusion

  • You should always aim high first (20%) and negotiate backwards if necessary. If they can afford it and really like you, you’ll get the offer without too much fuss. Otherwise you’ll get 25% or 50% of what you asked which is still a win. Be sure that you dont overvalue yourself though, otherwise it may prompt them to look at candidate number 2 or come out with an outright “take it or leave it” type attitude.

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