How to know your salary worth

Form a clear understanding of your salary worth.

Person counting money at a table

When seeking employment or a potential raise, it’s critical to have a clear understanding of your salary worth. With a little investigation you can take steps to ensure that you’re paid the “market rate” for a professional with your experience, knowledge, and accolades in your specific part of the world. 

In today’s world, the best way to calculate your worth is through online resources and tools. It only takes a few minutes of research to uncover all of the information you’re looking for.

Interested in Oyster but want more information about how the platform works? This product overview should help.

How to know your worth

It’s not good enough to assume that you know how much you should be paid. You must have all the numbers to back you up when negotiating with a new employer or asking for a raise at your current company. 

Here are three steps you can take to calculate your salary worth:

1. Review your current salary

Before you do anything, consider how much money you’re currently earning. Are you seeking a similar role? Do you plan to ask for a raise? Either way, your current salary is a good starting point. Use this as your foundation.

2. Ask your network

Depending on the relationship, it can be awkward to ask a peer for salary-related data and feedback. However, if you have a close relationship with a person—such as a former co-worker who you remain friends with—it never hurts to ask them for insights. 

Tip: Find people in your network who share the same job title and responsibilities as you. 

3. Search online

There’s no shortage of resources that provide data related to salary by location, job title, responsibilities, and other factors. 

Some of the best include:

Note: Don’t let conflicting data confuse you. Instead, calculate the average from all your resources and use that to your advantage.

Know your worth salary for negotiations

It feels good to know that you’re earning a salary in line with other professionals in your industry. But that’s just the start. It’s even more important to know your salary worth when it comes time to negotiate with a hiring company or your current employer. 

Let’s start with some tips for employees negotiating their salary during the interview process:

  • Know what you’ve been paid in the past: If you’re staying in the same industry, knowing your past salary can help you negotiate your future salary. 
  • Know the “going rate” for your job title: This is when your research comes in handy. When you know what others are being paid for your job, you can negotiate from a position of strength.
  • Keep an open mind: Even if the employer can’t match the salary you’re seeking, they may be able to make up for it with a more robust benefits package. 

For those negotiating a raise with their current employer, remember the following:

  • Do your research: This allows you to determine if you’re underpaid, overpaid, or in line with other professionals in your space.
  • Be flexible: It’s okay to play hardball, but a little bit of flexibility can go a long way. 
  • Back up your request with accomplishments: Don’t just ask for a raise. Talk about why you deserve it. 

Ask the right questions

When negotiating, ask questions to bring clarity to the situation and to help you formulate your next step. Some questions that may work for your conversation include:

  • Do you have any room to negotiate?
  • Are you open to negotiating on things besides my salary?
  • From my research, I believe I should be earning [x] more than my current salary. Does that align with your thoughts on the current market?

As you receive answers to these questions, among others, you’ll gain a better understanding of your position and what to do next.

Are you an employer?

Just as employees need to understand the compensation landscape, the same holds true for employers. This knowledge will allow you to competitively pay your employees, which improves job satisfaction and performance. 

Our global employment platform is designed to help you find, engage, pay, manage, develop, and take care of a thriving distributed workforce. From onboarding to measuring payroll performance and everything in between, we make it easy for you to manage every aspect of your team. 

About Oyster

Oyster is a global employment platform designed to enable visionary HR leaders to find, engage, pay, manage, develop, and take care of a thriving distributed workforce. Oyster lets growing companies give valued international team members the experience they deserve, without the usual headaches and expense.

Oyster enables hiring anywhere in the world—with reliable, compliant payroll, and great local benefits and perks.

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