You don't need to specify salary requirements as it is definitely too early in the process to allow yourself to be identified by a specific salary demand.
Employers often use this inquiry as a screening device so you certainly don't want to put your foot in your own mouth and give off too much information too soon. You risk getting eliminated from the candidate pool if your number is just too high. Or, you risk underquoting yourself if you're unaware about the level of enthusiasm the employer has to retain you.
Say “open” or “negotiable” whenever possible. Or in other words, play this game strategically (as is the company) so that you can guess how much they're willing to come out of pocket for the role.
If they don't let up on the matter, make sure that you conduct some online research about the salary range the position usually earns within the industry. You can really get technical by looking at salary ranges for the position at that specific company, if available.
Let this serve as a screening device for you, too. If you offered a number that you feel truly speaks to your value and still don't get the win, then this is good so that you can focus your time on the opportunities that better suit your needs.
Also, if you haven't already, check out my YouTube video discussing what to do after you get the offer!
Key takeaways from this vid:
(1) Always attempt negotiating your salary or you'll feel sorry in the end.
(2) Open the negotiations with inquiry first (and reiterate your interest).
(3) Take the casual approach to ‘beating around the bush” and stick to percentage ranges as best as you can.
(4) Base your asking on some element (current salary, another offer, recent graduation or recent skill acquired, etc.).
(5) Do your research!
(6) Stay true to your expectations and don’t get down about opportunities that don’t truly serve your needs.
Now that you're a pro, I want to hear from you.
How did these strategies change the way you see salary negotiations? Drop me a line with your feedback below.