Guest Post by Raine Parker
When thinking about your salary, either your current salary or the salary for a position in which you’re interested, it’s important to understand how that salary matches up with other salaries for similar sorts of work in related fields. This is especially important nowadays when the economy is suffering and you must make sure you’re getting the greatest value out of your career.
One of the ways to check on the quality of your salary in comparison to other salaries is to use a website that takes a look at all of the salaries in your field and related fields and the surrounding area where you live so that you can see what others are making in comparison or contrast to what you are making. These tools could be useful if you are thinking about asking for a raise or switching jobs or negotiating for a higher salary at a new position.
The following is a list of some useful salary analysis tools around the internet.
Perhaps the most popular of the free web-based salary analysis tools, Salary.com allows you to read a free salary report for your position and zip code. It is a very basic service; however, you do have the option of also adding in your education, experience, and other personal details if you start a free account with the site. This will help personalize the salary comparison report.
The New York Times Salary Comparison and Salary Calculator
The New York Times Salary Comparison and Salary Calculator also provides a similar service as that of Salary.com for free. The tool will bring up a list of similarly titled open positions as well as the base salaries and median salaries of these jobs.
Salary Expert offers you the chance to create a salary report from your job title, zip code or location. You can also look at the Cost of Living Calculator, which will help you in evaluating different salaries and positions in your area. There is also an Executive Salary Calculator if you are interested in .
The BLR Salary Search is unique in that it not only provides a report for job hunters, but als creates a report for employers and hiring managers to use as well. The report is tailored to their needs as a hiring organization. You simply have to give them your email address, and the link to the report will be mailed to you.
Perhaps the most in-depth of the salary comparison sites, Payscale asks you three pages of specific questions regarding your pay and benefits, education, and so on in order to create you a report. The site seems to have more specific information than the others, but also it takes longer to work through the steps.
This guest post is contributed by Raine Parker, who writes on the topics of online accounting degree. She welcomes your comments at her email Id: raine.parker6 AT gmail.com.
Using these salary checkers makes me depressed since it always says that I am not making enough money but who is willing to let go of the jobs that I want?
Sandy – If you’re happy in the job you have, you don’t need to worry about where you stand on the salary scale. You might use one or more of these when review time comes, as a way to show your employer what the typical pay range for your job is. All of them are widely accepted salary tools, so they may help you to get a higher income.
That being said, jobs aren’t all about income. Personal satisfaction is important too. We never want to make salary the be all and end all of work, otherwise it’s just a numbers game.
Thanks for pointing out all these great sites for getting salary info. These could also be useful in helping a person make a career choice or a career change!!
CL – You’re making an excellent point. I’d take it a step further and add that salary sites may be instructive in deciding how much student loan debt you can comfortably manage.
If you find that starting salaries in your field are $35,000, with say $60,000 after five years, you might use that as a barameter to determine how much debt you’ll be able to carry. Using these salary figures for example, you probably wouldn’t want to take on student loans in the $75-100k range.
I did one on Pay Scale and it said that I was in the bottom 20th percentile for pay. Ouch! I need to consider another place even though I like the people that I work with and the company. In the end, yes, I do have to feel fulfilled, but I also have to pay my student loans!!! 🙂 I am really weighing the pros and cons about changing employers and I have a couple of target places in mind. I guess when I decide what to do I’ll announce it on my blog.
Sandy – Maybe it’s time to ask for a raise. Print your report from Pay Scale and show it to them first though. It might help!
Nice list, Raine! But another useful salary resource is http://www.yourworthsalarycalculator.com.