Negotiating Job Offers in Care

Negotiating Job Offers in Care

Throughout your job search, there might be situations where you want to negotiate the offer being made to you. It can feel daunting because it means speaking up. You also need to strike a balance so that the job offer still stands but with the conditions you think are fair.

Keep reading to understand the benefits of negotiating a job offer. Plus, you’ll gain some tips on how to approach the subject and what kind of things to say and do to improve your negotiating tactics and get better results.

Why Negotiate?

Negotiating a job offer is about securing a role that aligns with industry standards and your needs. It’s useful to evaluate the entire offer to see if it reflects your skills, qualifications and experience. Negotiating isn’t always necessary, but it’s an excellent starting point for a mutually beneficial relationship.

One of the main reasons to negotiate is to ensure you get a competitive salary. Most entry level roles have set pay rates so that it is consistent and fair for others doing the same role. But as you develop your career, there might be more opportunities for negotiation. 

The salary is not the only factor for negotiation considerations. There could be details about the working conditions, including time off and holiday arrangements. You might also want to negotiate for additional training opportunities, mentoring programmes, and review periods for increasing the salary and career progression.

Tips To Negotiate Job Offers in Care

You’ll need to be confident, firm, polite and, most importantly, informed enough to say the right things to negotiate effectively. Here are six tips to help you in your discussion with prospective employers.

  1. Do Your Research

You’ll be able to negotiate from a much stronger position if you know the market rates, which involves looking at what other organisations are offering for similar roles. Have a look online to set your benchmarks. You can talk to other professionals in the field to get a better idea of conditions, holidays and benefits, too. 

  1. Demonstrate Why You Deserve It

If the hiring manager can see what an asset you’ll be, they’re much more likely to be open to discussing your needs. It’s your job to help them understand why you’re justified in making your request. 

An example of a justification could include childcare commitments on a specific day when you need to finish earlier. Alternatively, it might be the experience you have and the responsibility that you’ll take on that mean you deserve to start at the top of a salary bracket.

  1. Be Specific in Your Request

Being vague will mean that the prospective employer won’t know how to respond. Striking the right balance means being polite and professional but using clear language. You can practice with friends or family to get the tone and wording right.

You might also accept a review later down the line. For example, if you ask to start at a higher rate, the employer could answer ‘Let’s see how things go’. You can counter by asking for a pay review at six months to revisit the subject if the terms are acceptable to you. Make sure anything you agree to is put in writing for the formal job offer.

  1. Be Attainable and Prepared to Walk Away

Another crucial balance to strike is to demonstrate they can offer you a job you’ll accept. If they think you’ll say no even after improving the offer, they’re less likely to try. 

If you have other offers and you mention them as leverage, they’ll know you are in a position to walk away. Although you want to show that you have options, be sure to say why you would choose them and under which conditions you would accept. 

  1. Negotiate the Whole Package

While the salary might be a major factor, it isn’t the only part of the offer you might choose to negotiate. Focus on the entire offer, including responsibilities, job title, flexibility, benefits and training. If negotiations around pay aren't achievable, you can still explore other changes you’d like to see.

You could negotiate for things that will put you in a stronger position later. For example, having the word senior in your job title or agreeing to training courses that will help you to develop.

  1. Be Honest

The final balance to strike is being honest and knowing how to answer tough questions. An interviewer might ask, ‘If we call you tomorrow to offer you the job, will you say yes?’ Alternatively, they might ask if you have other offers. It’s best to answer honestly but be prepared to answer in a way that doesn’t hurt your position.

You’ll need to show that your enthusiasm for the role relies on the right conditions and then specify your requests. If you don’t have other offers, ideally, you’ll have other applications or interviews coming up. Even if you don’t, you can say that it’s the first interview for now or that you just started your job search, if that’s true. 

Negotiation Leads to Rewarding Careers

Demonstrating that you’re an excellent advocate for yourself is an appealing attribute - so don't be afraid to appropriately negotiate. Remember to evaluate an offer, identify your needs, research and prepare. You’ll be able to strike the right balance by being clear and honest and demonstrating why you deserve what you’re requesting. Good luck!