Receiving an Offer

Offers are typically given over the phone these days, so ask if they will be following up with an offer letter. This will help you review the details and ensure that you get what the employer is promising. You will also want to ask how soon the employer needs to hear back from you and how they would like to receive your decision (e-mail, phone call, etc.)


Know what you are worth

Back up your salary range with research (using the websites below) as well as your skills.

Know your budget

How much do you WANT to make, how much do you NEED to make and how much will you SETTLE for? Create a budget of monthly expenses, including rent, utilities, transportation, groceries, cell phone, Internet and cable, student loan payments, car payments and spending money. This will give you a good idea of how much you NEED to make in order to support yourself.

Know how much a particular job is worth

Use the following resources to research what others in the field are making:

Consider more than just salary

Many employers have set salaries for entry-level positions, but other benefits may be negotiable, such as vacation time, relocation expenses, etc.

Dos and Don'ts

  • Don't be the first to mention salary.
  • Don't lie about your salary history.
  • Don't tell the employer your bottom line (what you'll settle for).
  • Don't negotiate every part of the offer. Choose a few items that are most important to you.
  • Don't take it personally.
  • Don't feel obligated to accept the first offer.
  • Don't negotiate right away. Go home and review the offer first. Consider seeking assistance in understanding the terms of the offer from Career Services.
  • Do thank the employer for the offer.
  • Do use insider information to help you decide what to negotiate.
  • Do use hard data to justify your request.
  • Do be professional and courteous during the process.
  • Do get the offer in writing.