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Negotiating an annual bonus into a job offer: have you done it? Any tips for doing it?

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If they have you negotiating on bonus they have already won

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Doesn’t make sense at your level, but would depend on what metrics kick out the value of the bonus. Generally speaking withholding on a bonus is higher, you’ll get it back at tax time but it’s honestly easier and more prudent to negotiate a higher guaranteed salary than a reliably “good” bonus. Anybody can promise you supplemental income, but if it’s not a sure thing what’s the point? It’s not a viable way to ensure more money, an employer who won’t up your salary but will “promise” you a bonus is only able to make that promise cause it’s unenforceable and thus not true.

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Just get a higher salary. They can’t take that away from you

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W + K on point once again.

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You can start by asking for a fixed % of your salary, say 10% or more in your contract. The challenge will be to get that payment guaranteed by your employer, as they will generally tie it to your performance as well as that of the company. So there’s already two big ‘outs’ on ponying up. At the end of the day it’s free money whatever the amount, so long as it’s paid out, hence a ‘bonus’. And don’t rely on receiving it in your budgeting.

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