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How to Speak HR

By Alexi Calvo | HRPeople

August 19, 2009

Issue: Your Company Pays Less Than Competitive Salaries

What the experts say:

“No one’s here to get rich or have three beach houses and a boat. Our employees come here to work on something cutting edge/meaningful/ as a part of a team, and are normal, hardworking people. We are a company that’s careful with its cash (which should be an indicator of good financial management) and so our salaries are more at the mid-range than the top of the market.”

“It’s not about the money here. It’s about the mission/autonomy/ family-friendly culture/state of the art technology.”

“We discuss the unique financial and cultural benefits that separate us from similar companies. We offer generous paid time off benefits that are greater than most other retailer. In addition, we have great health care benefits, whose costs at our company have remained stable over the course of several years. And did I mention our clothing discount?”

Issue: The Candidate Will Be Paid Less Than They Deserve

The experts say:

“I generally tell the candidates if this is the case and ask them to focus on the job and responsibilities. I’m a firm believer that money follows top performers and sometimes, you have to take a step back compensation wise to gain the type of experience you are looking for. However, as a recruiter, I always do my best to get the candidate (prospective new hire) the compensation they deserve.”

“You may not start out where you think you should, but once you prove yourself, it should be easier to make a case for an increase.”

This is a tough one, since you want to be fair and reward super talent when it’s warranted. What are some ways in which you can negotiate with your company for a higher salary for a superstar applicant?