Career Center

Salary Negotiation

Negotiate to ensure that you're getting fair market value for your skills, experience, and knowledge. Negotiate for the right reasons - because you're worth more than the offered amount based on industry standards, not because you just want more money. Avoid basing your desired salary on your current salary.

Hold off negotiations until after you're offered the position. Discussion of salary requirements before the offer can limit your negotiation leverage or screen you out of the job completely. If asked to give salary requirements, state a range using flexible terms such as "low, mid, and upper" instead of stating actual numbers. For example, "mid to upper 30's" is more flexible than "35-40".

You must be able to justify your salary expectations. Before negotiating, research your career field and determine salary averages in relation to your skills and level of experience. Contact professionals/companies in your field and ask for salary information, and use these Salary Sites below:

Practice negotiating! Be prepared to overcome objections, but maintain a professional attitude and avoid being confrontational. Be aware that some companies have formal pay structures and therefore aren't negotiable.
An example of how to start negotiations:

"I've done research of industry standards for similar positions in this area of the country, and it seems that salaries range from mid to upper 30's depending on experience and qualifications. Based on my ______ internship and ______ years of volunteer experience, I was hoping that I would be towards the higher end of that range. Is there any possibility of that?"

Remember to evaluate the entire compensation package, because salary isn't everything. Consider things like health insurance, retirement package, vacation/sick leave, personal reward, opportunity for advancement, job security, etc.

Salary Sites

Check out Glassdoor's free salary information for jobs and internships by occupation, company, and location for UNCW students and alumni. Glassdoor gives you an inside look at company salaries, reviews and interview questions for more than 26,000 companies.

Wage Access

Occupational Employment and Wages in North Carolina (by job title and location)

NACE Salary Calculator

Salary Calculator for Students and Recent Grads

NACE Salary Survey - Highlights

Review the complete Salary Survey data in the Career Center

Job Star
Links to more than 300 salary surveys
Salary information based on geographical information
Also includes job descriptions

Cost of Living/Relocation Resources

Compare salaries, housing, utilities, transportation, healthcare and groceries.

Salaries, Costs of Living & Relocation (U.S. Dept. of State)

Numbeo Cost of Living Index Rate

CNN Cost of Living Calculator

Relocation Resources