How to Calculate Your Salary

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Published: 27th November 2009
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Calculating one's salary can seem like a daunting task. However, using the following key points will boost your confidence and prepare you for salary negotiation. For the novice employee, newly unemployed or recent college graduate, salary negotiation is an important part of the interview process but also the most dreaded. Many people are unaware of a position's salary and end up selling themselves short. Others overshoot their monetary compensation requirement and lose out on a good job. There are numerous resources online to help you figure out what a salary should be but don't be afraid to ask an employer or recruiter what the salary range is for a specific position. The keys points I will discuss in this salary calculation article are; what your personal needs are; establishing a salary range and performing a search to determine the most accurate salary for a position.

What you want and what you need is rarely the same thing when it comes to an hourly or annual salary. Your priority will be to cover all your bills and be able to deposit a comfortable amount of money into your savings account. Create an itemized list of all your monthly expenses. For a more accurate estimate, you can write down what you spend for an entire month. It is suggested at this point to note areas of potential savings. Do you spend five dollars a day on coffee? If so you save money by making your own at home. Be realistic in your financial goals. When determining your desired salary for a position also factor in your qualifications for the role. Once you have this figure calculated move on to formulating a range within which your desired salary will fall.

If you already know how much you need and how much you want, why should you have a salary range? Because providing one specific number does not give your potential employer room to work with. This is a business profession courtesy. Not only will you give the employer something to work with, but you will have an idea of what to expect. Two important points to remember when creating a salary range are where your ideal figure will be positioned and how wide the range should be.

Depending on your industry, education, experience and the company, try to keep your salary range between $5,000 and $10,000. Your desired salary should fall at the bottom of the range. For example, if your desired salary is $60,000 consider a range between $60,000 and $65,000 or $70,000. If the employer offers you the minimum you will still be at your ideal salary. Let's be serious here, how many times does an employer offer you the maximum salary for a position? Be realistic, be professional and be tactful.

The final point to take into consideration when calculating a salary requires you to do some research. This is by far the simplest step. Unless you are pursuing a never before heard of position that was just created by a company from another planet, you should be able to find the salary range for your position online based on geographic specifications. Simply type in "salary calculator" in your favorite search engine and you will be presented with numerous results. Online jobsites are also a reliable source for salary calculations. It's important to equip yourself with the right resources and tools in today's tough job market. Know how to discuss money, benefits and more when interviewing for a job.

Interested in more career guide hints and tips? Check out our Get that Job page for a free sample cover letter and additional ways to improve your career search. Our blog and hints and tips page both have additional information that will improve your quality of life.

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