Whether you’re looking for your first physician job, or you’re ready to change employers, one of your top concerns is likely compensation. Namely – are you being compensated fairly, and will you continue to receive appropriate compensation in the future.
First, you need to determine what the average salary for your position is, then you can look at how to negotiate your pay when accepting a job offer.
Know the market
One of the great things about the internet is the access to detailed salary information it provides. By using resources such as reports from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Salary.com and Glassdoor, job seekers can see market averages of salaries for positions similar to their own. For example, a cardiologist in Cincinnati could see what his or her colleagues in Akron earn, compare cost of living rates, and decide if it’s worth moving cities.
As you begin your job search, perform your due diligence by researching salaries at the national and local level to better understand your value in the marketplace. This is especially helpful for professionals who are currently employed, but believe they may be undervalued by their current employer.
Use your network
It has long been taboo to openly discuss salaries among coworkers, but this trend is changing as more millennials enter the workforce. According to The Street, 33 percent of millennials are willing to talk about salary with their coworkers, compared to 8 percent of baby boomers.
This is good news for job seekers. By sharing salary information with coworkers, employees gain a leg up on employers. After all, it’s much easier to negotiate for pay raises if everyone knows where they stand on the payscale. Physicians who want to ensure they are being fairly compensated may want to broach the subject with their colleagues.
Negotiate during the hiring process
One of the best times to negotiate your salary is once you receive a job offer. Before you accept the offer, take some time to consider the salary. Based on your prior research, do you believe it is fair? If you think your skills and experience entitle you to better pay, now is the time to bring it up – but you have to do so tactfully.
U.S. News & World Report suggested having several talking points lined up, so you can explain to the hiring manager why you deserve better compensation. If possible, use examples and success stories from your previous work to illustrate your point.
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