A guide to hacking salaries and day rates 

Early career negotiation advice

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When we start out in the world of work, knowing our worth is no easy task. Some of us don’t want to ask for more cash for fear of losing the job offer when the rest of us simply don’t know where to pitch our day rate! Whether you’re employed, or freelance, learning how to set fees is a skill and one that many of us are still working on refining. Here’s some info to help you to figure out how much cash you should be pocketing for your hard work. 

Experience equals cash 
Working your way up from the bottom is an outdated concept and not something that we support. However, when it comes to being paid, experience does equal cash. 

We don’t mean that if you have minimal experience, you shouldn’t be paid a fair wage, but what we do mean is that if you have a lot of accumulated experience in a particular field, this should be reflected in your salary. This is especially true when you set a freelance day rate. In discussions surrounding freelance work, you should set your day rate early on, and consider increasing your day rate as you gain more experience. 

Know what other people are getting
If you are asked what your salary expectations are, and you have no idea, Glassdoor is a great website for gauging what others in your industry are being paid for the same types of work. None of us should be getting just the scraps for entry-level jobs, especially if it’s for a big brand or company that you know is raking in the cash! Secondly, If the job you’re being offered fails to meet your fair salary expectations, you should really consider if this is somewhere that you would consider working! 

Never undersell yourself - aim high! 
If you find yourself in a position where you are asking for a raise, or up for a promotion when you are negotiating your salary, think about putting your salary bracket somewhere between 5-10 grand higher than what you would be happy to accept. If you are happy with 35 k, put your salary from 40-45. Who knows, the gamble might work in your favour, and you’re setting yourself up to be much happier with your salary. 

Go in prepared
Treat a salary negotiation meeting like a job interview. You’re proving your positive attitude towards work, and why you are worthy of more money. Print out stats that show you’ve hit targets, or speak about ways in which you’ve contributed to company success and culture. Make your employer realise exactly what you do for them with facts and figures. Think of it as a humble brag with numbers. 

If you’re looking for more tailored advice on negotiation, consider using the tech that is at your disposal! Finance apps such as Your Juno offer a range of financial advice, including tips for negotiation.

Words: Grace Goslin

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