After rounds of interviews, tests, and meeting the team, you’ve finally landed your dream job! Congratulations. Now comes the final part – it’s time to negotiate your offer.
With any job offer, you need to negotiate your compensation package. If the thought makes you nervous, you’re in good company. Remember that employers expect you to negotiate. When we plan our strategy, we instantly think about money, but there are numerous other benefits that should also be considered. These benefits often come at no, or low, cost to your company. Don’t let fear hold you back; great benefits can make your new job even better than you hoped!
Here are some important things to negotiate as part of your job offer:
Know what’s important to you
Before you even start interviewing, you need to know which benefits are important to you and will make a difference in your life. By knowing in advance what you want and need, you will be better prepared to negotiate. It helps to have a good idea of industry and country standards, as that gives you leverage in negotiations.
A better title
Let’s be honest, there are some job titles that just don’t look that impressive on your professional profile. While you can’t have a C-suite title in a “Secretary” role, “Corporate Executive Assistant” sounds better and still fits your job description. Ask to have a title change that accurately reflects the work you do. As a bonus, it will help you in the future when you start your next job search.
If your company average is 2 weeks per year, ask for 3 weeks. This type of change has no monetary loss to your company, while it may be valuable to you to have more paid time off. Remember that you can also request your vacation allowance increases earlier than company policy.
If you are moving far away to take a job, ask about relocation expenses. Some companies offer this as standard with allowances already set, but others might not. You will want to negotiate all relocation details before you accept a role, as once you sign you are stuck with standard company policy.
Bonuses are often overlooked, yet they can and should be negotiated. There is often more flexibility when it comes to signing bonuses than salary increases, as one-time payments won’t disrupt salary equality within a division. Your signing bonus will help you get any additional money not approved in a salary negotiation. Don’t forget to always negotiate a higher salary first, as your future increases will be based on it.
Our work lives have changed dramatically since our grandparents’ days, and there are no guarantees certain jobs will even exist in a couple of years. Ask if you can get a guaranteed severance package written into your contract should your company go bankrupt or you lose your job through no fault of your own. While it’s important not to be negative, there is nothing wrong with protecting yourself. It may also make your company think twice before laying you off, especially if you negotiate a generous severance package.
Travel benefits you can keep
If you will be travelling in your role, negotiate to keep any travel benefits you receive, like frequent flyer miles or hotel rewards. These can add up very quickly and equal a lot of savings for your personal travel should you be obligated to travel frequently.
It’s not cheap to commute for work. Talk to your company about the opportunity for a monthly allowance to cover travel costs. This could be for public transport, or a parking spot near the office. While they may not be able to cover the full cost, they may be able to provide a portion to assist you.
Tuition, training and continuing education
We all want to be challenged in our jobs and keep growing our careers. One way to do that is through continuing education courses. Many companies are happy to assist, as long as you will be learning additional skills that you can bring to your role. Some countries may even have employee assistance programs that help companies pay for their employees’ upskilling. Look into all the options available to you and agree to a yearly spending allowance.
Remote working is becoming more and more common, especially if your job allows you to be away from the office. You may be able to negotiate a telecommuting schedule working 2-3 days at home. It’s not unusual that you need to be in the office for a specific period before you are able to start telecommuting, so have this period specified in your contract. This may be one of the best non-salary perks.
Negotiate an early review
This may sound like a boring one, but it can actually accelerate your first raise, and your career growth. You know what you are capable of, so ask for a review of compensation and benefits in 6 months and get it in writing. You will want to prove your worth when you get started. By negotiating early performance reviews, you can ask to have goals outlined for that review. This will give you set objectives to achieve and make sure you start your role successfully.
Other benefits you can negotiate
- Home office technology if you are working remotely
- Stock options
- Better insurance: health, dental, vision, disability, life, etc.
- An office instead of a cubical
- Company car, or mileage reimbursement
- Child care options
- Conference attendance at the organisation’s expense
- Parental leave
- Wellness programs – like fitness clubs, etc.
- Wardrobe allowance – especially if you will be meeting with high-end clients
- Work phone or laptop
- Admissions to associations or business clubs
- School loan reimbursement
- Discounts on company products and services
- More time off: sick day handling, personal days, paid holidays, vacation (how many, when and how?)
- Time off for charity or community work
- Company cafeteria allowance
- Special commissions on deals you are bringing in
- Memberships, association dues, subscriptions
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