Salary or Compensation.
Admit it. This is your biggest consideration on why you want to work overseas. Although your job here in the Philippines is “sufficient” to cover for your daily needs, working overseas means you get to earn in dollars; hence bigger.
Let me tell you a secret: you can negotiate for a higher salary.
In fact, this is among the things you need to do especially during job interview. This will allow you to earn more and get more benefits – provided that you have experience and skills to back up your request for higher pay.
Before you sign the contract, here’s what you need to do to get a better salary package:
1. Know the company first.
They say never face your battles unprepared. Before you negotiate for better salary, make sure you know who you’re talking to first. Learn everything about the company so you know what you’re getting yourself into and whether or not you are a perfect fit to join them. Don’t forget to research about employee benefits as well the company’s owners or officers.
2. Don’t agree right away.
$1,000 every month might be enough for your family, but are you willing to settle for that amount? What if your employer could offer more but because you agreed on the initial offer, you also lost your negotiating power?
The point is don’t settle right away. Always negotiate for a better salary amount or package. If you can’t get a raise, then at least bargain for allowances or employee benefits such as insurance, flight tickets, or overtime pay. Believe it or not, this will help you a lot in the future.
3. Highlight your strengths and skills.
An increase in salary or the grant of additional benefits doesn’t come easy. You need to justify this by highlighting your strengths and skills that will be useful for the job. Inform your potential employer about additional trainings you went to in order to improve your skills. This would make it easier for your employer to give in because he is able to set you apart from the rest of the candidates.
Be careful. You might over-sell yourself or sound too arrogant, so learn to hit the brakes when needed.
4. Do not convert right away.
This is a common mistake among Filipinos, especially first-time OFWs. When negotiating for a better salary package, do not convert the salary into peso right away. Conversion rate changes regularly, plus you might not receive your salary in US dollars.
Once you agreed on the amount and salary package, make an estimate as to how much your expenses will be to give you an idea on how to budget your money.
5. Be flexible when negotiating.
Yes, you want to earn as much as you can, but at the end of the interview, the employer still has the last say. Listen to your employer’s salary offer and employee benefits provided. Make sure you look like you are seriously considering the offer, but leave them hanging. Don’t immediately inform him that you want this much because you will only give away your bargaining power.
Then and if negotiation is allowed, make a counter-proposal. You might want a higher pay or additional benefits based on your experience and skills. Inform your potential employer that this is what you offer on the table but you are still willing to compromise to ensure that both parties are happy.
6. Always ask nicely.
This is a must. Some foreign employers are not willing to bend but because you asked nicely and negotiated while showing respect, you could get the last laugh after the interview.
Therefore, ask nicely and politely whether the salary is negotiable or if there are any add-ons. If the employer is firm about sticking to only what was advertised, then don’t immediately look so disappointed or start being disrespectful. This will only ruin your chances of getting hired.
7. Never bluff about other job offers.
This is a big no-no.
Sure, you want the employer to go after you because you feel you deserve the job based on what you can do. If things didn’t go your way, then don’t lie about job offers from other employers just to get a higher salary. This could backfire and you might end up not getting the job.
Are you ready to start the negotiation process?