Dr. Vanessa Ann Claus, a career coach and Senior Faculty Associate for CSU Global’s Human Resources Management programs, shared her expertise around the tricky subject of salary negotiations. (Missed the webinar? Watch it here!)

Dr. Claus concluded her presentation with an engaging two-part question and answer opportunity. Check out Part I here

What about those shifting from the public sector to the private sector? Should people be looking for any specific percentage increase when moving from public to private?

There isn’t an exact percentage increase most of the time, because it goes back to the benefits you get working in the public sector. It would be good to look at the Bureau of Labor Statistics to give you a baseline number rather than coming up with a specific percentage.

Let's say you and I are in the same role, but I'm getting more vacation time than you. Don’t benefits have to be equally applied for employees or is that not the case?

Not necessarily. There are some benefits that are mandated by state and federal laws, but some additional benefits aren’t required to be the same across the board. When applying, be sure to also negotiate benefits along with salary.

Can you negotiate salary for a grant-funded position? 

Normally, there is a specific amount set aside for salary based upon the grant, but you can always ask. There will be limitations and most likely a very small amount (if any!) of wiggle room. The worst they can say is no.

As an independent contractor who was hired by an organization, do you have any advice?

As a contractor, you typically have more leverage. Independent contractors usually have a higher salary because they don’t have the benefits of a full-time employee. You can definitely ask if there is an opportunity for an increase. It may not be allowed, but it doesn’t hurt to see what is available. However, there is one thing independent contractors need to be extremely careful about: many companies often misclassify job positions so that they don’t have to pay a full-time employee with full-time benefits. That way the company pays you the salary of an employee but is not required to pay for benefits. Make sure you inform yourself of how to properly classify your role before accepting an independent contractor assignment.

If you’re a current CSU Global student or alum, our Career Navigation Services are here to help you land the job you've been working toward. Whether you want to move up in your current field or break into a new industry entirely, CSU Global is here for you, with services ranging from career coaching, resume help, and interview preparation.