Am I getting paid fairly?
After job hunting, submitting job applications, and interviewing you may be willing to accept any job offer that is presented to you. Depending on the current status of the job market, the competition in your specific industry, your professional experience, job skills, education or degrees; choosing the right career opportunity will often encompass the issue of financial compensation as part of your decision. Am I getting paid fairly? What are my other coworkers in my field earning and can I expect to earn the same pay?
If your industry or the current job market is highly competitive or the overall national unemployment rate is high you may be willing to accept any job offer with little consideration give to the market salaries. However, if you have an opportunity to enter into negotiations, look at your long term career opportunities as a whole. Is the job offer comparable to the average salary your industry pays? If you are unsure about your industries pay rates, talk to others in your career field by asking them a range of salary expectations you could expect. Never ask a coworker what they earn, always refer to any hourly pay rate or salary in terms of a range. Use Google and other online salary calculators to obtain a guideline what your potential earnings should be for your industry. A note of caution, be sure any salary calculator or hourly pay rate apply to the specific city or state, regional location, and level of employment. There are significant differences in salary compensation based on the geographical location, cost of living index. The cost of living index determines whether or not salaries should be higher or lower depending on the overall cost of residency in a specific location. You can not necessarily assume what a coworker in one state earns is exactly comparable to another state or region.
Having received a job offer can be an exciting moment at any career level, more so in a challenging job market. Do consider all your options, especially the compensation package being offered. In the long run, you may regret accepting a salary that is too low.