Knowing Your Worth - The 4 Best Salary Resources
Before that job offer comes your way, it’s important to know what you’re worth to ensure you react properly to the salary that’s being offered. If you’re not sure what you should be getting, this guide will show you how to figure out the compensation you deserve.
Most people aren’t into talking openly and directly about how much they take home, but if you ask the right way, you’ll learn plenty about the salaries and hourly rates in your field. A direct shot at "So, how much do you make" may not work, but inquiring about a range, or even a hypothetical situation, ("My buddy said he got a Flash designer contract job for $90/hour. Does that sound right to you?") should reveal a lot based on the responses and reactions you get.
Online Salary Tools
Just do a search on Google for "salary" and you’ll find plenty of salary research/comparison/calculator tools. These are very useful for establishing a baseline for salaries in your industry. Try out Salary.com, PayScale.com and Glassdoor.com for reliable, but potentially broad results. There may not be results for “Director, Video Content Optimization” but you will find enough related information to form an estimate for what you’re worth
Surveys offer info that is far more relevant to your specific industry, especially if you’re an interactive designer or Internet marketer. Many professional organizations like SEMPO, UPA, HOW, and Coroflot conduct annual industry surveys on Salary across their industries. While there isn’t a salary survey for every single field out there, the ones that exist offer reliable information.
Other Online Resources
The major job search engines and job boards also offer salary information beyond their job listings. On sites like Indeed.com and SimplyHired.com, you’ll find salary stats based on what is culled from all the job listings they aggregate. Trying a variety of related keywords for your location will yield the best results as well as searching for specific skills in addition to job titles, like HTML5, web design and AJAX.
So unless you enjoy awkward conversations or want to see a proverbial 404 error during your next interview, check out each of these resources and you’ll be standing on a solid foundation of salary information when it comes time to negotiate.