Following on from our six expert tips to negotiate your next salary, you may find that you require more practice on the negotiation side of things. Most of us feel uncomfortable talking about salary – even for the most skilled and experienced professionals – but it’s such an important aspect of your new job in making sure that you’ve secured an appropriate salary for your skills, background and what you will be bringing to your new employer.

Even during challenging economic periods, it’s crucial that you don’t know low-ball yourself and be confident in having a professional conversation about securing a higher salary. 

Read through our top tips for salary negotiation by email, then pick one of our three templates for you to tailor to your circumstances.

Top tips for salary negotiation by email

If you’re planning to send a salary negotiation email or write a salary increase letter, follow these general guidelines:
•    Be clear and concise about what you want
•    Be courteous but straightforward
•    Back up your expectations with relevant average salary data and examples
•    Invite further negotiations but know your limits

Standard salary negotiation email template

For an initial salary expectation email, you need to dedicate some time for research to find out the average salary range in for your job/sector. This means you can back up your request with a concise overview of your relevant skills and experience – in other words, you are not plucking numbers out of the air but making a strong case with real industry salaries.

Dear (Name),

I am thrilled about the prospect of joining [Company] as [Position].

Based on the average annual salary range of ($_______ to $_______) for this position, with consideration of my [2–3 qualifications/skills or summary of major past achievements], my expected base salary is ($_______).

I’m open to further discussions about the base salary depending on other factors such as opportunities for career progression and training.

I look forward to hearing from you soon.

(Your name)

Salary negotiation email using salary market averages

It’s not uncommon for companies to offer salaries that are below market average due to budget constraints or simply not having a good understanding of salary benchmarks for their sector. In this case, your email response should outline average salaries for the role based on your research, and reiterate your relevant skills:

Dear (Name),

I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to work at [Company Name] as [a/an/the] [Position Title] and contribute to your team. With my [2–3 qualifications/skills or summary of major past achievements], I am confident that I will achieve great results for [Company Name].

Before I sign the offer, I would like to discuss base salary. According to my research, the average salary for similar positions in the [work location] area is in the [average salary] range. I would like to discuss the possibility of moving the offer closer to [proposed salary], which is in line with my skills and the requirements of this job.

Thank you again for the offer. I look forward to hearing from you soon.

(Your name)

Salary negotiation email if you receive a higher offer from another company

When you received a higher offer from one company but would prefer to work with another company (due to better job prospects et cetera), your email should clearly and concisely explain your position:

Dear (Name),

Thank you for offering me the position of [Position Title].

I’d like to discuss the base salary for this position before accepting your offer. Although [Company] is my first choice, I’ve received another offer with a higher base salary of ($______).

I’m very excited to join your team and would readily accept your offer if you are able to match this base salary. I understand that this figure may be above your planned budget, but I am flexible and open to negotiation discussions.

Thank you again for your offer. I look forward to hearing from you soon.

(Your name)

Securing the salary you want is all about being armed with the right knowledge and research. 

Get more insights into average salaries in Australia as well as salary negotiation tips in our Page Personnel Salary Benchmark Report for 2020.

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