How do you answer “desired salary” at an interview or screening? Also do you feel that companies are adjusting for inflation?

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You don’t! You instead ask for their range

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When they ask for what your desired salary is say, “I’d love to flip the script and understand what the salary range is for this position.” And once they tell you say, “this is in line with what I was thinking. However, this could change as I go further down the interview process.” That way this CYA if you get an offer and want to negotiate higher.

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Here’s what I’ve been using over the last few interviews that I’ve found works really well.

“What’s your salary expectation?”

“Thank you for asking. I actually noticed your job posting did not identify a salary range, and it would be helpful for me to know. Would you be able to share the salary range for this role at this stage of the interview process?”

Most have said yes and gave me the range. In which case I say “thank you. I’m pleased that my salary expectations fall within that range. I’m looking to start my next role at X or ideally higher.”

If they don’t then I’ve said “Okay I understand. In order for me to be able to share my salary expectations it’s important that I have a full and clear idea of what’s expected in this role, however for your reference I’m interviewing for roles that have a salary range that start from X. Would you be able to confirm if this is within your range?”

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I just interviewed a *ton* and I would directly tell them. I know my range is on the high end and if I can't be paid that it's easier for everyone to figure that out early. Though I realize it's a little more numbers direct as a freelancer

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Makes sense! Especially for freelance I do the same. I’m thinking full time tho.

I always ask them for the rate. Sometimes their range is a lot higher than I would have said.

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With contract, be direct and tell your rate. I have given May rate assuming 1099 payment, and willing to move down up to 10% for W-2 (no self-employment taxes, and no need to prepay anything quarterly.

For full-time, do your research on the company, check their reputation, find some mutual people on LinkedIn if you can…. Salary can be great, but a salary I’d consider acceptable for a routinely 40-45 hour a week commitment, would not be acceptable for a 50-60 hour commitment.

TLDR: Companies are different, a dollar isn’t worth the same everywhere.

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Imo it’s important to do research to understand what the role might pay to gauge your own expectations. And then from there come up with a number that you would accept if it was offered to
You

When I got my current role, I told them in the screening call I wanted at least 110k base. After I got the position, They offered 96k + bonus and stock. I stuck firm and told them I wanted 110k base and signed my offer immediately after they agreed

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"I'll consider any fair offer." Dodge and weave until they share their range.

Helping employees deal with inflation is only a priority as it relates to attracting and retaining talent.

I doubt companies will adjust. Inflation is affecting their costs as well. They're not looking to bleed faster.

Comp has already risen substantially since the pandemic, which has contributed to the recent spike in inflation. With layoffs and interests rates rising, the pendulum is swinging the other direction.

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Imo it’s good to be confident and know your worth so you can just answer their question. I usually high ball a bit just in case. I’ve even had some recruiters tell me their range is higher than what I’m asking for which is cool to see.

I try to look on Glassdoor about the salary range for a role prior to the interview just so I get a sense of the range.

Do your research, and mention: given years of exp this is ______ of the going rate/base, and I’d love to start with ______ and revisit after 6 months into the job to feel out the actual scope and responsibilities.

Because recruiters use the same Job Description most the time anyway and you won’t be able to see any hidden tasks so it’s a fair way to negotiate if you like the energy.

I always say something along the lines of “based on my expertise, quality of work, and the research I’ve done on this position’s average salary, I believe $xxxx would be an appropriate amount to start.” Something like that.

I don’t mind outright giving a number, granted I give a high number that is within range of the role elsewhere. If my range was 135-145k I’ll just say 145k and see what they say.

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