Tom Sweeney

It's a coming of age tale….

Posts Tagged ‘Salary Negotiation’

Compensation Packages: Let’s talk…

Posted by sweens on February 10, 2009

Further to my entry yesterday, candidates should be prepared to discuss with a recruiter what their ideal compensation package would be.  This means, aside from your base salary, what other compensation factors are you looking for:


         Benefits package

         RRSP Matching

         Stock Options

         Vacation Time

         Closed over Christmas


While many of these may seem trivial or miniscule for most people, these elements can make or break a successful offer from employer to employee.  These factors can also be used as a way to offset a bridge that can not be crossed when it comes to agreeing on a base salary.  What I mean by this is that if you get an offer of $5000 dollars less then what you were hoping for and the employer is unable or unwilling to give you that, you may consider asking for another week of vacation to offset that monetary difference. 


The ability to negotiate RRSP matching is likely non-existent – as it is generally a company policy – however the ability to negotiate the start of benefits, or your eligibility to acquire stock options are often based around the level of your position or seniority in the company and can be tweaked on an individual basis.  These small changes may sweeten an offer for you or allow you to accept a position that is going to pay you a lower base salary then you had hoped for. 


Most offers can work out to be beneficial for both sides; it is just a matter of finding the right combination that keeps everyone happy. 

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Salary Negotiations: Does anyone ever win?

Posted by sweens on February 9, 2009

I have said on more then one occasion that candidates have the right to demand fair market value for their skill set.  I do not think that many people would argue with this comment.  However there are times when candidates convey to a recruiter what their salary expectations are and when they reach the offer stage – the offer is not what they expected. 


Firstly, it is the responsibility of the recruiter to convey to their account manger or client what the candidate is expecting in terms of compensation.  I personally feel that the recruiter has a responsibility to indicate the clients’ maximum to a candidate if the candidate is expecting more then the maximum.  If your candidate is looking for more then your client is prepared to pay then they need to be aware of that as any offer they receive is likely to be less then their desired compensation package.


Candidates should also be aware that if a client is willing to pay up to $100,000 for a position, that salary point is likely their maximum salary for someone with EXACTLY the background they are looking for.  If you match up with 90% of their requirements (a very common situation) the client is unlikely to pay you their maximum.  This situation is one a recruiter should prepare you for. 


Candidates should not let their final decision come down to money but both sides should be aware of the expectations – from both the candidate and the client – when moving forward on any given opportunity.    




The onus is not only on the candidate.  Companies should be paying fair market value for any candidate they are interested in acquiring in to their company.  A company should be aware of the perception they give to a possible candidate when they make an offer below the candidates’ desired compensation point.  Candidates who find themselves in such a situation can come out of the offer with a sour taste in their mouth and a doubt about how serious the company is in acquiring their services. 


If this situation happens, candidates should not run away from the opportunity as there can be many circumstances that lead to such a situation.  The company may be on a lower pay scale then the market currently dictates.  The candidate could be demanding more then the hiring manger.  The company may just not have enough money to pay someone higher then a given point.


It is important for both the candidate and recruiter to work together to establish the compensation package moving forward.  Candidates need to be honest in their expectations and not shoot for the moon.  Recruiters need to be up front with candidates on what their clients are willing to pay.  Account Managers also need to set their clients expectations if their salary range is lower then the market value. 


If everyone works together through the whole recruitment process, there is less chance that an offer will be turned down due to money.

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