Negotiating an Offer: (Part 1 of 4) What Are the Key Questions About Specific Terms and Benefits?

Judith Cushman All Posts, Negotiating An Offer 0 Comments

judith cushman associates blog career advice negotiating an offer compensationAnswer: For months a finalist has been interviewing for a new job. One of the last steps is negotiating the offer. Getting that right and using the negotiating process to cement a good relationship is the goal. A key point, I believe, is starting that process early. Here is part 1 of a 4-part series that finalists think ends at part 3 with the offer letter. But there is one more essential step to take.

Negotiating terms of an offer:  when should that discussion begin? What style of negotiating works best for you? How can you make the negotiating process a win-win rather than a confrontation?

Negotiating an offer begins early in the interviewing process when a candidate is first asked for salary information. That is when (as I have written extensively in a 5-part compensation series) an approximate total compensation figure should be provided.

In addition, another important aspect to preparing for an offer is a summary in writing during the interviewing process about the job itself to be sent to the hiring manager or the HR representative. This occurs once you have reviewed the description and conducted detailed discussions about the role. This note will useful in negotiating terms of the offer and for purposes noted below.

The confirmation takes the form of either a thank you note describing your understanding of the job itself as a result of the discussion. Or, it can be in the form of a series of questions or statements, once you have read the job description, re: your understanding of the position. This written discussion is extremely helpful to the hiring team to ensure there is agreement about the position. It also establishes the specifics of the job you are being offered.

Should there be a need to terminate your employment due to no fault of your own, this note will aid in establishing the basis for a payout. Usually, the offer letter does not go into much detail about the job you are accepting and it takes a clear description about the job in the thank you notes or memos to fill in that gap.

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