Knowing when to bring up salary during job interviews

I have written about it, I have said in workshops and presentations: the first person to utter a salary number loses. Now, a recent survey of 300 senior managers by Robert Half reveals the best times for hiring managers to bring up the subject of salary:

  • Phone interview: 9%
  • First interview: 31%
  • Second interview: 38%
  • Third interview or later: 8%
  • Once you make the job offer: 14%

Regardless of when a hiring manager discusses salary requirements, never be the first one to toss out a number. If the job ad doesn’t list it, (“competitive salary” means different things to different people), keep asking questions until you have enough information to ask for more than you want so you can settle for what you need. But you’d better have that number firmly in mind when the conversation starts.

For more details on salary negotiation, see the Salary Negotiation chapter in my award-winning book, Confessions of a Hiring Manager Rev. 2.0 (Second Edition).

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