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Old 07-31-2013, 06:41 PM
 
8 posts, read 18,046 times
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The website Glassdoor.com has salary information entered by real people who work at specific companies and I was trying to figure out how to use it to estimate how much I should ask for when interviewing or negotiating salary for a new job.

Should I shoot for the average or above the average, and if so, by how much? If I want the job but can afford to walk away, what should I take into account when deciding where to set my "lowest acceptable salary"? I realize there are other factors to consider such as benefits and that everyone is different and will come up with a slightly different number based on other personal factors. I'm just looking for some general guidance. I've changed companies twice before due to moving because of my husband's job (from DC to San Diego, back to DC). This time we'd be going back to San Diego permanently. Both times I got about a 5% increase in pay and was later told by friends that I should have asked for way more, like 10-20% raise, so I just want to make sure I do it right this time because we don't plan on moving again. Thanks for any advice!

More specific info on the job I'm looking at on Glassdoor:
At the time of the interview, I will have just under 7 years of experience in my field of engineering. For the specific job title and company, there are 17 people with 4-6 years of experience ranging in salary from 73k to 107k, with the average being 90k. There are also 10 people with 7-9 years of experience ranging in salary from 83k to 108k, with the average being 94.5k. Bonuses are low or non-existent so not really a factor. I believe these numbers are for jobs located anywhere in the country because I couldn't get the filter to work for just the San Diego location. Right now I make 80k, so I'm wondering what is reasonable to ask for.

Thanks!
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Old 07-31-2013, 06:52 PM
 
2,349 posts, read 4,471,635 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sara8888 View Post
Right now I make 80k, so I'm wondering what is reasonable to ask for.

Thanks!
Fellow engineer here. I don't know your specifics but I think asking for $95K would be reasonable if I make some basic assumptions and you aren't an unusual candidate. You'll settle at $90K.

I once got two 22% raises in 14 months but going from company A to company B (22%) then 14 months later back to company A (another 22%). That was in 2005 and 2006 and the economy is different now so sometimes it's good and sometimes it isn't.
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Old 07-31-2013, 07:28 PM
 
4,069 posts, read 5,463,311 times
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What I do is get the average salary from payscale, glassdoor, and salary.com. If my salary is lower than all of them, then I shoot much higher.

It also depends on your options. If my resume is mediocre and there is only 1 response, I have no room to negotiate. If my resume has a high response rate with interviews every week, I can shoot for the higher end.

I have done ok. While I am not in engineering, I got a $20k raise in 2011 by switching jobs. Before that, I got a $25k raise switching jobs. The most crucial aspect is increasing the resume response rate and interview hire rate. If you increase those numbers, it opens up the door to more money. You can turn down lousy offers.
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Old 07-31-2013, 09:21 PM
 
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From my experience, Glassdoor tends to be a little bit on the low side (maybe 5% below actual). This is due to the salary info being a combination of what employees currently make and what someone posted 3-5 years ago.

On the other hand, for some reason, Salary.com tends to be a bit high.
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Old 07-31-2013, 09:50 PM
 
Location: Corona the I.E.
10,075 posts, read 14,007,151 times
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payscale.com might be better.
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Old 08-01-2013, 04:00 PM
 
8 posts, read 18,046 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by move4ward View Post
What I do is get the average salary from payscale, glassdoor, and salary.com. If my salary is lower than all of them, then I shoot much higher.

It also depends on your options. If my resume is mediocre and there is only 1 response, I have no room to negotiate. If my resume has a high response rate with interviews every week, I can shoot for the higher end.

I have done ok. While I am not in engineering, I got a $20k raise in 2011 by switching jobs. Before that, I got a $25k raise switching jobs. The most crucial aspect is increasing the resume response rate and interview hire rate. If you increase those numbers, it opens up the door to more money. You can turn down lousy offers.
Wow, that's what I'm talking about! I have switched jobs twice and only got 5 or 6k each time, nowhere near what I probably should have been asking for but I just did not know it was possible to get so much more. I have never had much chance to be choosy. Usually needed another job fast and didn't have many options, but I will definitely try and make improvements this time to put myself in a better position. Thanks!
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Old 08-01-2013, 04:17 PM
 
8 posts, read 18,046 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Colorado xxxxx View Post
payscale.com might be better.
Payscale.com told me I'm only in the 14th percentile at my current salary of 80k. It shows a median of 95k with the top 90th percentile making over 120k.

If you get the median salary for your position coming into a new company, is that considered good? Based on payscale.com, could I potentially shoot for low 6 figures?

I would think a lot of the people making above the average are people who came into the company with good negotiating skills. I've heard you should always get a lot more when you switch companies as compared to just staying with the same company. My annual cost of living raise this year was 0.5%, and with taxes increasing by 2% due to the tax holiday being gone, I'm actually making less take home pay than I was last year…
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Old 08-02-2013, 08:54 AM
 
400 posts, read 1,317,355 times
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Yes. You can use these sites for basis but don't tell the recruiter in negotiations that you should get paid $x because website Y says so. HR/ Hiring Managers always seem to take offense to the numbers on those sites and always claim that the numbers are unrealistic. Know the numbers and state that you won't go below X
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