Negotiate Salary after Consulting
January 21, 2022 11:46 PM   Subscribe

I've been consulting (part-time) for a company and am going full time. I need tips for negotiating salary.

About a year ago I began working for a company part time. It was a new role for me, and my previous position I didn't make much money, so when they asked for a rate and gave them a number lower than I wanted to. I also didn't negotiate well. Now they want me to go full-time and I'm ready to do that.

Its a remote gig so the salary range is posted (due to the Colorado law). I'm in a similarly high cost of living area as Colorado. Lets say the range is 100-125k, I'm making an hourly rate that when extrapolated out to full time would result in, say, 80k a year.

The company is awash with money, I've done a good job, I work well with my team, I'll probably stay for a while. I want and deserve the top end of that range. I need some language to help me.

Note that the person I work directly under (from my impression) doesn't care about salary or anything and isn't trying to nickle and dime anyone, its HR. The new boss probably would be very upset if HR lost me because they tried to lowball me. So I need some tips to negotiate directly with HR. Note that the offer to go full time is there (starting in a couple of months) and I need direclty to negotiate salary. Thanks. BTW this is in tech.
posted by anonymous to Work & Money (3 answers total)
Good news, you seem to have decent leverage in this situation. Do you have anything in writing from your boss indicating you're doing excellent work? If not, would it be easy to get it in the next couple of days? If not, I would write up a summary of your own understanding of how you're excelling (for your own reference) and lead the conversation from a place of awareness of your achievements and sprinkle in references to those achievements as appropriate.

As much as possible, make the conversation about compensation center around market rates for this type of work in your high COL area. This sets an objective anchor for the discussion, and resets the conversation from your current pay.

Since your current rate is low, frame the conversation as being a full time role 2 months from now, which is a different situation from a part time role accepted 1 year ago. If necessary, you can say something like circumstances have changed, which is true, and your expectations for a full time role as X are Y, where Y is your compensation.

Internally if you need reasons to yourself why you should ask for more, assume you are giving up very lucrative gigs that pay you 3-5x what you are currently making. Or personal projects or family time that is very valuable to you, and so a fulltime job needs to be worth the opportunity costs.

Helps if you can site some market rates for your line of work as part of the conversation.

Overall, stand firm in your negotiations and don't feel pressured to accept anything right away. HR's instinct is to lowball you, but at the end of the day their job is to get you hired. Any well-funded tech company that is competently run will pay the advertised salary range to hire an individual who 1) they already know can do the job and 2) conducts themself respectfully during the hiring process. Otherwise, the company is poorly managed and is doing you a favor and letting you know that upfront. So hold out for the advertised rate!
posted by Goblin Barbarian at 3:06 AM on January 22, 2022 [2 favorites]

What state are you in? California and New York have laws that not only limit employers from asking your current salary, but also prohibit using previous salary information when setting pay. I'd go into negotiations with that in mind, and use the range they posted. I believe in some states they are also required to tell you the salary range of the job if you ask, so you could do that too. Idea is to establish from the start that both you and the company are negotiating within the range they have established for the job, not what you were paid as a consultant.
posted by amycup at 7:44 AM on January 22, 2022 [1 favorite]

So I just did salary negotiations and it went like this: I just asked confidently. Seriously.
They said here its our offer, and I said "I'm looking for y."
The HR person did the offer stuff, talked to relevant people and came back with a counter offer which I accepted.

I'd push that inflation had been high and that prices are changing everywhere, and to keep up with current market trends $XX number is necessary for you to accept.

I also compared health care costs, which may or may not be relevant to you, as my health care costs were going to be way more now under my new employer than what I was currently paying.
posted by AlexiaSky at 9:41 AM on January 22, 2022

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