T Nation

Salary Negotiation - Paid OT to Straight Salary

How does one go from a salary + straight time OT position into a salary only position?

I’m currently working an average of 58.6 hours/wk over the first 12 pay periods this year. My average for the previous year was around 57 hours/wk. I get paid straight time for every hour over 40/wk, so my actual pay has averaged around 145% of my base salary.

If I make the job change that I’m considering, I do not anticipate any substantial decline in my work hours. I know how I am and how I approach things, and with the responsibilities listed, I don’t see it being any less than 55/wk. But how do I go into a salary negotiation when I’m almost 100% certain my actual pay rate is going to price me out of the position?

I’m considering the change because I’d be moving from an engineering design firm to an owner/operator (midstream natural gas), and the position involves a considerable amount of field work on existing facilities, which is something my current one does not.

However, I don’t know how I can feel positive about a change when I’m not only not getting a raise, but I’d actually be taking a cut. I would expect their max offer to be somewhere around 125% of my current base rate; I’m due for an annual review in a month though, so it would actually be a slightly smaller percentage.

Anyone here ever dealt with anything like this?

I get offered to be “promoted” ALL the fucking time. For salary of course. Just say no. Money talks and bullshit runs the marathon. Explain the math like you would to a child. “If I work X number of hours now, I make this because of the OT. If I work X number of hours while on salary, it is less money for me. Why should I accept a position that pays less money?”

Employers are smart. They know they can leverage your emotions with promises and “future opportunities”, etc… It’s all bullshit. They just want to pay you LESS than what you are worth. The whole concept of salary is bullshit if it involved working over 40 hrs a week. You should be paid for what you work. Especially in the energy sector. I worked in the GOM for a bit and witnessed first hand how they systematically FUCKED their employees with low pay. Look at how much profits they make. They can afford to pay more, but they are just greedy as shit.

If you want this job, negotiate for a higher salary (so that you won’t be taking a pay cut) and stick to your guns. Do NOT compromise or play the old, “I’ll offer high, they’ll offer low, we’ll meet in the middle”. That’s how you buy a car, not negotiate a salary. You tell them your number and you tell them it’s firm. When they try to low ball you, you remind them that your number is firm. If they persist in low balling you, you let them know that, “I really like this opportunity, but it’s not something I can realistically do for less than what I’ve told you. I really would have been a good fit. Best of luck in finding someone with my qualifications at that price. If you guys change your mind, you know how to get in touch with me”. And walk out, hang up or whatever.

Something along those lines that involves you not buckling under their pressure and saying , “OK, I’ll just let you pay me whatever you think is best”. Fuck that. YOU are the one providing the value where the rubber meets the road. YOU will be affecting their bottom line and making them more profitable. YOU are worth every penny and more. Remember that while you are negotiating.

And if they don’t compromise, then it’s their loss. You HAVE a job right now. Why on earth would you work for less?

Salary negotiation is set up so that the new hire is in the hot seat and is at a disadvantage. That’s how they WANT you to feel. But the reality is that a really GOOD employee at the right position will make such a huge difference that the increase in salary will not even be noticed by the company. They know the value of a winner and will pay for it. “losers whine about how they did their best, but winners go home a fuck the prom queen”. If you are a winner, don’t settle for less than what you are worth.

CUPCAKES

[quote]Aggv wrote:
CUPCAKES[/quote]

My experience is that good, skilled, experienced employees are hard to find. Many companies are willing to pay “extra” for that, above and beyond whatever your standard market rates are… even more so if they’re hiring you away from a position you’re pretty happy with.

I second the advice of setting a firm price.

If I’m understanding you correctly, you’re looking for a change, but are less concerned about a salary increase; you just don’t want to end up getting paid less for your time. Even so, I’d still target a minimum of a 7% increase over your current rate per hour to truly justify the move. However, that doesn’t have to all be in salaried pay: as an owner/operator (or really, any role), that can be in the form of equity, or a higher 401k match %, or whatever.

Personally I look for a 15-20% increase, but I wouldn’t go any lower than about 7%. By taking on a new job, you’re also taking on more risk. The reward needs to balance that out.

[quote]LoRez wrote:

[quote]Aggv wrote:
CUPCAKES[/quote]

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4KoKWf6pLs8 [/quote]
LOL I feel a strong to watch most of these movies now.

AC, invaluable advice as always.

I dont know nothing about those salary negotiations, but I know a little bit about those business thingies.

Be willing to walk away.

They no pay, you no play.

Spare time is underrated.

[quote]LoRez wrote:
My experience is that good, skilled, experienced employees are hard to find. Many companies are willing to pay “extra” for that, above and beyond whatever your standard market rates are… even more so if they’re hiring you away from a position you’re pretty happy with.

I second the advice of setting a firm price.

If I’m understanding you correctly, you’re looking for a change, but are less concerned about a salary increase; you just don’t want to end up getting paid less for your time. Even so, I’d still target a minimum of a 7% increase over your current rate per hour to truly justify the move. However, that doesn’t have to all be in salaried pay: as an owner/operator (or really, any role), that can be in the form of equity, or a higher 401k match %, or whatever.

Personally I look for a 15-20% increase, but I wouldn’t go any lower than about 7%. By taking on a new job, you’re also taking on more risk. The reward needs to balance that out.[/quote]

Yeah I usually look for 20-25%, and that’s when I was unhappy and looking to make a change.

The thing of it is, I’m not looking to make a change this time. I was approached with the opportunity, and the position is basically everything I want; otherwise I wouldn’t even be considering it. I’m actually very happy with my current employer.

[quote]Steel Nation wrote:
I was approached with the opportunity, and the position is basically everything I want; otherwise I wouldn’t even be considering it. [/quote]

Do they know that?

Hopefully not, because then you can be all like, yeah man , I am totally happy where I am at, offer me more money!

Excuse me, mooaaar money…

You could have your dream job and mooooaaaar money because if they want you, others want you too, they just might not know it yet.

[quote]angry chicken wrote:
Look at how much profits they make. They can afford to pay more, but they are just greedy as shit.

[/quote]

Oh jeez! Wheres Beans? He loves statements like this! (not that I disagree with you at all.)

AC is right on the money. Not sure if you’d be getting bene’s (health insurance, 401k, etc.) that you weren’t before, but that is certainly a consideration.

I work for a large telco company and every contractor I speak to who has the opportunity to go permanent I tell the same thing: don’t take a fucking CENT less than the bare minimum you can live with because you will never see any substantial raise once they have you. There’s a 10% cap in our company that says no one can get more than a 10% raise in any given year…even when switching positions. So if you apply (internally) for a position you’re wholly qualified for with a salary of $150k but currently make $80k, there’s no chance of getting the bump. They’ll pay someone off the street $150k rather than give the guy who’s been working there for 10 years an 87% raise.

Not saying your company is like this, but it very well might be. Of course, if you have the skills and live in an area where jumping jobs is easy, then that gives you some latitude, but I would be careful.

[quote]Tyler23 wrote:

There’s a 10% cap in our company that says no one can get more than a 10% raise in any given year…even when switching positions. So if you apply (internally) for a position you’re wholly qualified for with a salary of $150k but currently make $80k, there’s no chance of getting the bump. They’ll pay someone off the street $150k rather than give the guy who’s been working there for 10 years an 87% raise.
[/quote]

Why thee fuck do companies do this? I do not get it. Like wouldn’t they rather have someone who has experience at their company rather than lay more for someone who doesn’t?

Beats the ever livin’ shit out of me. I think it is not uncommon at all…as assbackward as it is.

[quote]Tyler23 wrote:
Beats the ever livin’ shit out of me. I think it is not uncommon at all…as assbackward as it is. [/quote]
Fuck that.

[quote]SkyzykS wrote:

[quote]angry chicken wrote:
Look at how much profits they make. They can afford to pay more, but they are just greedy as shit.

[/quote]

Oh jeez! Wheres Beans? He loves statements like this! (not that I disagree with you at all.)
[/quote]

LOL

I’m not saying that ALL employees are worth more, but some of them are grossly underpaid for the value they provide. I’ve worked for many customers over the years and the wasted money I see is unbelievable. Then they have the balls to nickle and dime us on the service contract. Big companies are stupid as shit. They hire us, pay us for our expertise and then ignore the advice, do what they want and when shit goes sideways it’s always, “can we fix it? how can we avoid this in the future?”. How about spending a little bit of loot up front to avoid problems, LIKE WE’VE BEEN TELLING YOU? But that might affect their quarterly profit report. That might affect Joe Blow’s promotion in six months because he went over budget. He’d have to put those numbers on the TPS report. But DAMN he sure looked good responding to that emergency! He called and AC came and fixed it in two hours! Good job Joe Blow!

LOL They never listen. But that’s OK, it’s all good. Job security baby! I get paid very well to make chicken salad out of their chicken shit. And it always costs them more in the long run… But like I said, big companies are fucking stupid.

[quote]LoRez wrote:
My experience is that good, skilled, experienced employees are hard to find. Many companies are willing to pay “extra” for that, above and beyond whatever your standard market rates are… even more so if they’re hiring you away from a position you’re pretty happy with.

I second the advice of setting a firm price.

If I’m understanding you correctly, you’re looking for a change, but are less concerned about a salary increase; you just don’t want to end up getting paid less for your time. Even so, I’d still target a minimum of a 7% increase over your current rate per hour to truly justify the move. However, that doesn’t have to all be in salaried pay: as an owner/operator (or really, any role), that can be in the form of equity, or a higher 401k match %, or whatever.
/quote]

Yes, this, a thousand times this. I don’t disagree with Angry, but I do think it’s relatively myopic to think that compensation is equal to - and only equal to - the amount of money you are paid.

You require X number of dollars to pay your bills every month and absolutely cannot go below that, but beyond that what else is important to you? If the company only has a certain amount of money budgeted for the position, that’s it, they can’t go up (well, without pulling it from somewhere else), but they CAN provide other benefits. Maybe 3 weeks of vacation per year instead of 2 would be important to you? The ability to work from home one day a week? Two? A better healthcare package? Company car? Expense account?

Not all of these are applicable to every position, but the list goes on. Don’t sell yourself short, but don’t fool yourself into thinking that money is the only way this company can compensate you.

[quote]KBCThird wrote:

[quote]LoRez wrote:
My experience is that good, skilled, experienced employees are hard to find. Many companies are willing to pay “extra” for that, above and beyond whatever your standard market rates are… even more so if they’re hiring you away from a position you’re pretty happy with.

I second the advice of setting a firm price.

If I’m understanding you correctly, you’re looking for a change, but are less concerned about a salary increase; you just don’t want to end up getting paid less for your time. Even so, I’d still target a minimum of a 7% increase over your current rate per hour to truly justify the move. However, that doesn’t have to all be in salaried pay: as an owner/operator (or really, any role), that can be in the form of equity, or a higher 401k match %, or whatever.
/quote]

Yes, this, a thousand times this. I don’t disagree with Angry, but I do think it’s relatively myopic to think that compensation is equal to - and only equal to - the amount of money you are paid.

You require X number of dollars to pay your bills every month and absolutely cannot go below that, but beyond that what else is important to you? If the company only has a certain amount of money budgeted for the position, that’s it, they can’t go up (well, without pulling it from somewhere else), but they CAN provide other benefits. Maybe 3 weeks of vacation per year instead of 2 would be important to you? The ability to work from home one day a week? Two? A better healthcare package? Company car? Expense account?

Not all of these are applicable to every position, but the list goes on. Don’t sell yourself short, but don’t fool yourself into thinking that money is the only way this company can compensate you.[/quote]

Sure, but if a company is not willing to at least hit the base rate, what makes a person think that they’re going to hit the mark on other comps?

I mean saving a few hundred on health insurance is good, but if we’re talking about 45% of a six figure salary+paid OT, they’re going to have to do better than that. Like, way better.

[quote]SkyzykS wrote:

[quote]KBCThird wrote:

[quote]LoRez wrote:
My experience is that good, skilled, experienced employees are hard to find. Many companies are willing to pay “extra” for that, above and beyond whatever your standard market rates are… even more so if they’re hiring you away from a position you’re pretty happy with.

I second the advice of setting a firm price.

If I’m understanding you correctly, you’re looking for a change, but are less concerned about a salary increase; you just don’t want to end up getting paid less for your time. Even so, I’d still target a minimum of a 7% increase over your current rate per hour to truly justify the move. However, that doesn’t have to all be in salaried pay: as an owner/operator (or really, any role), that can be in the form of equity, or a higher 401k match %, or whatever.
[/quote]

Yes, this, a thousand times this. I don’t disagree with Angry, but I do think it’s relatively myopic to think that compensation is equal to - and only equal to - the amount of money you are paid.

You require X number of dollars to pay your bills every month and absolutely cannot go below that, but beyond that what else is important to you? If the company only has a certain amount of money budgeted for the position, that’s it, they can’t go up (well, without pulling it from somewhere else), but they CAN provide other benefits. Maybe 3 weeks of vacation per year instead of 2 would be important to you? The ability to work from home one day a week? Two? A better healthcare package? Company car? Expense account?

Not all of these are applicable to every position, but the list goes on. Don’t sell yourself short, but don’t fool yourself into thinking that money is the only way this company can compensate you.[/quote]

Sure, but if a company is not willing to at least hit the base rate, what makes a person think that they’re going to hit the mark on other comps?

I mean saving a few hundred on health insurance is good, but if we’re talking about 45% of a six figure salary+paid OT, they’re going to have to do better than that. Like, way better.
[/quote]

Because people negotiate with what they have. Maybe the person OP is negotiating with has a budget set for the position he can’t deviate from, but it’s within their discretion to let the person work from Home, or whatever. My point is simply to take a step back, look at everything you want, not just one thing, and see if anything th pe other party can offer would address any of those other desires. Sometimes it works sometimes it doesn’t. If oP evaluates, decides money is THE single controlling factor then [shrug] maybe a deal can’t be made. But there’s clearly more he wants, when he says this has EVERYTHING else he’s looking for or he wouldn’t even consider it

Also, according to OP, he expects their initial offer (from which they are likely to be able to come up, if given good reason) to be 125% of current base rate (vs the 145% of base he’s currently making) so this is nowhere near an offer of less than half what he’s making

[quote]KBCThird wrote:

[quote]SkyzykS wrote:

[quote]KBCThird wrote:

[quote]LoRez wrote:
My experience is that good, skilled, experienced employees are hard to find. Many companies are willing to pay “extra” for that, above and beyond whatever your standard market rates are… even more so if they’re hiring you away from a position you’re pretty happy with.

I second the advice of setting a firm price.

If I’m understanding you correctly, you’re looking for a change, but are less concerned about a salary increase; you just don’t want to end up getting paid less for your time. Even so, I’d still target a minimum of a 7% increase over your current rate per hour to truly justify the move. However, that doesn’t have to all be in salaried pay: as an owner/operator (or really, any role), that can be in the form of equity, or a higher 401k match %, or whatever.
[/quote]

Yes, this, a thousand times this. I don’t disagree with Angry, but I do think it’s relatively myopic to think that compensation is equal to - and only equal to - the amount of money you are paid.

You require X number of dollars to pay your bills every month and absolutely cannot go below that, but beyond that what else is important to you? If the company only has a certain amount of money budgeted for the position, that’s it, they can’t go up (well, without pulling it from somewhere else), but they CAN provide other benefits. Maybe 3 weeks of vacation per year instead of 2 would be important to you? The ability to work from home one day a week? Two? A better healthcare package? Company car? Expense account?

Not all of these are applicable to every position, but the list goes on. Don’t sell yourself short, but don’t fool yourself into thinking that money is the only way this company can compensate you.[/quote]

Sure, but if a company is not willing to at least hit the base rate, what makes a person think that they’re going to hit the mark on other comps?

I mean saving a few hundred on health insurance is good, but if we’re talking about 45% of a six figure salary+paid OT, they’re going to have to do better than that. Like, way better.
[/quote]

Because people negotiate with what they have. Maybe the person OP is negotiating with has a budget set for the position he can’t deviate from, but it’s within their discretion to let the person work from Home, or whatever. My point is simply to take a step back, look at everything you want, not just one thing, and see if anything th pe other party can offer would address any of those other desires. Sometimes it works sometimes it doesn’t. If oP evaluates, decides money is THE single controlling factor then [shrug] maybe a deal can’t be made. But there’s clearly more he wants, when he says this has EVERYTHING else he’s looking for or he wouldn’t even consider it

Also, according to OP, he expects their initial offer (from which they are likely to be able to come up, if given good reason) to be 125% of current base rate (vs the 145% of base he’s currently making) so this is nowhere near an offer of less than half what he’s making
[/quote]
Just had to fix these quotes. Couldn’t take it anymore.

[quote]KBCThird wrote:

[quote]SkyzykS wrote:

[quote]KBCThird wrote:

[quote]LoRez wrote:
My experience is that good, skilled, experienced employees are hard to find. Many companies are willing to pay “extra” for that, above and beyond whatever your standard market rates are… even more so if they’re hiring you away from a position you’re pretty happy with.

I second the advice of setting a firm price.

If I’m understanding you correctly, you’re looking for a change, but are less concerned about a salary increase; you just don’t want to end up getting paid less for your time. Even so, I’d still target a minimum of a 7% increase over your current rate per hour to truly justify the move. However, that doesn’t have to all be in salaried pay: as an owner/operator (or really, any role), that can be in the form of equity, or a higher 401k match %, or whatever.
[/quote]

Yes, this, a thousand times this. I don’t disagree with Angry, but I do think it’s relatively myopic to think that compensation is equal to - and only equal to - the amount of money you are paid.

You require X number of dollars to pay your bills every month and absolutely cannot go below that, but beyond that what else is important to you? If the company only has a certain amount of money budgeted for the position, that’s it, they can’t go up (well, without pulling it from somewhere else), but they CAN provide other benefits. Maybe 3 weeks of vacation per year instead of 2 would be important to you? The ability to work from home one day a week? Two? A better healthcare package? Company car? Expense account?

Not all of these are applicable to every position, but the list goes on. Don’t sell yourself short, but don’t fool yourself into thinking that money is the only way this company can compensate you.[/quote]

Sure, but if a company is not willing to at least hit the base rate, what makes a person think that they’re going to hit the mark on other comps?

I mean saving a few hundred on health insurance is good, but if we’re talking about 45% of a six figure salary+paid OT, they’re going to have to do better than that. Like, way better.
[/quote]

Because people negotiate with what they have. Maybe the person OP is negotiating with has a budget set for the position he can’t deviate from, but it’s within their discretion to let the person work from Home, or whatever. My point is simply to take a step back, look at everything you want, not just one thing, and see if anything th pe other party can offer would address any of those other desires. Sometimes it works sometimes it doesn’t. If oP evaluates, decides money is THE single controlling factor then [shrug] maybe a deal can’t be made. But there’s clearly more he wants, when he says this has EVERYTHING else he’s looking for or he wouldn’t even consider it

Also, according to OP, he expects their initial offer (from which they are likely to be able to come up, if given good reason) to be 125% of current base rate (vs the 145% of base he’s currently making) so this is nowhere near an offer of less than half what he’s making
[/quote]
Good initiative.