Not a lot of us can say we go to work for the love of it.  Sure, we like our jobs, our co-workers, even the boss, we’ve worked or studied hard to get a position that we want and are passionate about but let’s be honest, we are also there for the salary.    This is what ties it all together and allows us to enjoy life with our families or holidays or hobbies.

So, when is the right time to discuss salary?

It is obvious you don’t want to waste your time applying for roles that are outside of your salary expectations but asking about salary straight away can jeopardise your chances at the role as the salary discussion requires great timing and consideration, you don’t want your prospective employer to think money is your only motivator.

It is always beneficial to do some research prior to an interview on the general salary brackets for the position you are applying for, so you are prepared when the topic comes up. 

Food Industry remuneration

There is no current remuneration guide for Food Technologists, or Food Scientists in Australia so for technical roles it may be beneficial to get in touch with a recruiter that specialises in recruitment for the food industry / food manufacturing.  This also would apply to quality assurance or new product development positions that do not fall under the typical banners.

Generally you will want to find out as much detail about the job in the application and interview process, ask as many questions as possible to determine whether it is the right job for you and the salary you should expect from the position.

Typically, salary would not be discussed during the initial application or 1st interview, this is a time to assess the role and the company to see if in fact it is a good fit for your skills and experience.

However, if you are asked your salary expectations ensure you answer in a confident and clear manner, always give a salary range rather than a single figure and be prepared to negotiate. It is also very important that your salary expectations are in line with your skills/experience and you can actually “walk the walk”.

It would be acceptable to ask what the compensation is for the role during a subsequent interview or meeting providing you have a good feeling and actually want the job.  There could be other perks in addition to the annual salary like gym memberships, or extra days off that you will need to factor in your decision.

Do not feel like you need to agree on salary straight away, if they are aware of your expectation range and want to offer you the role, you can negotiate then. 

Obviously if you are being represented by a recruiter then some of the salary negotiation will be done for you, most recruiters will advise potential employers of your salary range and also give you advice if they think you’re are over selling yourself or selling yourself too short. But it “pays” (pardon the pun) to be prepared to discuss directly with your potential employer also.

As a general rule, follow the lead of the interviewer, salary is bound to come up throughout the interview process, be prepared, positive and honest to your perspective employer so it’s a win for all parties.