New hires are likely leaving money on the table by not asking for a higher salary because Canadian employers are actually open to paying up for top talent.
According to a recent survey by Robert Half, only 33 per cent of Canadian workers polled said they negotiated pay with their last job offer. Meanwhile, 65 per cent of employers said they expect some back-and-forth on salary. More than half are open to negotiating compensation as well as perks and benefits.
In a separate survey by Hays Canada, 61 per cent of employers said they have increased salaries outside their budgeted range to land a candidate.
Rowan O’Grady, president of Hays Canada, says new hires should be patient and negotiate once an offer is on the table.
“This puts you in a position to see what they’re offering, decide if that aligns with your expectations and put your case together for negotiation, if necessary,” O’Grady told Yahoo Finance Canada.
“The mutual fit between yourself and the company should be the first goal.”
O’Grady says it’s best to wait for the hiring manager to bring up salary. When it does come up, reiterate your excitement about the role.
It’s important to do your research before rolling up your sleeves though. Tools, such as Indeed salaries, let you find the average salary for the position you’ve applied for. Jodi Kasten, managing director at Indeed Canada, says you should consider where the job is based and the cost of living when comparing.
Kasten says it's important to have a well-formulated data-backed answer, but don’t be afraid to pad expectations.
“By aiming higher, you can make sure that, even if they offer the lowest number, you’ll still be making your target number,” Kasten, told Yahoo Finance Canada.
“For example, if you want to make $45,000, don’t say you’re looking for a salary between $40,000 and $50,000. Instead, give a range of $45,000 to $50,000.”
Kasten says it's important to be confident because it shows you’re not going to accept less than you deserve. But don’t be overconfident, explain your reasoning.
“While you don’t need to get too detailed in explaining how you arrived at your salary expectations, it doesn’t hurt to share why you’re giving the number,” said Kasten.
“Highlighting your experience or educational level can add additional justification for your salary, especially if you’re aiming for the higher end of the local average.”
Jessy Bains is a senior reporter at Yahoo Finance Canada. Follow him on Twitter @jessysbains