Negotiating a job offer
If you have been offered a job, that’s great! Now it’s time to think about your negotiations. You should wait until you have a job offer before starting to negotiate on salary or other aspects of the job. However, you may be asked at interview to say what you think a reasonable starting salary would be, so go prepared with some expectations and market research on salaries for similar roles elsewhere (try using the Glassdoor salary checker or search jobs.ac.uk for similar roles).
There are some useful guides on how to approach offers and negotiations:
- Imperial’s Careers Service – Evaluating job offers
- Target Jobs – Negotiating a better package for your new job
- Jobs.ac.uk – Negotiating a salary
It is always worth negotiating the starting salary, but this may not feel easy or comfortable. For advice and thoughts on this process, have a look at the blog by ‘Cheeky Scientist’ on how to negotiate your salary, which was written by a doctoral graduate for PhDs and postdocs.
If you are moving countries you should become familiarised with what is on offer and what else you can negotiate, look at this blog post from Nature Careers for more insights. More advice from Harvard Business Review can be found on this article: 15 Rules for Negotiating a job offer.
Negotiating on other aspects of the job
Money isn’t everything and some salaries will be non-negotiable, but that doesn’t mean you can’t negotiate on other aspects of the job, which may be more valuable to you:
- Your responsibilities – e.g. perhaps you want to have some line management responsibility, but it wasn’t in the job description
- Training and development entitlement – will your employer allow or fund you to get a qualification or access development support, or commit to a certain number of days training for you each year?
- Flexible working – e.g. part-time or condensed working hours (nine-day fortnights), early/late start times to fit in with the school run or avoid peak travel times
- Alternative locations or homeworking – multi-site employers may allow you to work from different sites that are nearer to home, or allow homeworking one day a week
- Loans – e.g. for travel season tickets or to purchase a bicycle
- Annual leave allowance