When’s the Right Time to Discuss Salary, Flexible Work Arrangements and Other Benefits During an Interview?

Career coaches typically say to put an employer’s needs ahead of your own during an interview. As important as that advice is, you also need to determine whether the employer can fit your personal needs and interests with salary, flexibility and other benefits. The trick is how to gain the information you need without coming across as overly demanding or not focused on the company’s needs. With a proper strategy, you can determine when the right time is to discuss salary, flexible work arrangements and other benefits during an interview. Here are some suggestions.

When the Interviewer Shows Interest in Hiring You

A good time to discuss salary, flexible work arrangements and other benefits is after the interviewer expresses interest in hiring you. For instance, they may ask when you can start or whether you can provide references. Doing so shows you have their attention and are a good fit for the role. Because you showed the value you can add to the business, you have the leverage to ask for information about salary, flexibility and benefits.

After Being Offered a Job

Discuss salary, flexible work arrangements and other benefits after you receive a job offer. Be sure you thoroughly researched everything you want well before your first interview. For instance, review the company website and job description for salary information. Use sites such as Glassdoor and Comparably to figure out the organization’s salary range and benefit structures. Connect with employees through LinkedIn to ask about company culture. You can state your case and provide evidence for why you should receive it. After negotiating your salary, bring up benefits. Be sure you clearly understand what the company is offering and whether it fits your needs. For instance, find out whether you’ll receive health insurance, a retirement plan and PTO. Depending on your lifestyle and interests, you want to ask about reimbursement for ongoing education, daycare, a gym membership or other benefits. After negotiating your benefits, bring up flexible work arrangements. For instance, ask how the teams are structured and which work arrangements best serve the company’s mission. Ask about the number of hours employees work each week. If there is flexibility, share whether you’re looking for a variable start and end time at the office, a four-day workweek, the ability to work remotely one or more days per week or some other option. Be ready to compromise on what you request.

Interview with a Leading Chicago Employment Agency

As a leading Chicago employment agency, Casey Accounting & Finance Resources offers complimentary use of our Career Tools Portal to help with your job search. You gain access to top job search tools, an article and video library, professional resume review, career assessment programs and more. When you’re done, you can set up an interview with one of our seasoned recruiters. Contact us today to get started!

6 Tips to Help Improve Your Networking Skills

It’s true that your network is your net worth. When you network out of genuine curiosity in all environments, you learn things you otherwise may not have known. If you have a typical routine and see many of the same people each day, take the time to get to know them. You never know what opportunities you may uncover. Here are six tips to help improve your networking skills.   

 1. Introduce Yourself 

A great way to meet people is by introducing yourself. Wherever you are, walk up to someone, put out your hand and tell them your name. Talk about who you are and what you do. Ask the person to do the same. Put yourself out there and show who you truly are so you attract whom you need. 

 2. Make Friends   

Because friends do business with friends, focus on starting relationships. Discuss your goals, dreams, challenges and personal interests. Find commonality to bond over. If someone especially impresses you, ask them to coffee or lunch to continue your conversation. When you need an in at a company and you have an established relationship with an employee there, you’re more likely to find the value you’re looking for than if you simply picked up that person’s business card.    

 3. Listen 

Be unlike most people and attentively listen. Show you are truly interested in what they have to say. Given the opportunity to truly connect enhances that person’s view of you as a friend. People trust you and feel safe sharing who they are. You gain much more knowledge when you give someone your undivided attention. What you learn could lead to career opportunities down the road.    

4. Give Before Asking 

Always give before asking for something in return. When you meet someone, think about how you can help them reach a goal, make a connection or overcome an obstacle. Show your willingness to invest in them, add value to their life and build trust. If nothing comes from the relationship, be happy that you helped someone.   

5. Request an Introduction 

If you want to meet a person, ask the people you know if they know anyone who knows the person. When you find someone who does, ask them to introduce you. Because a warm lead is better than a cold one, you’re more likely to get in the door as a referral than a cold email or phone call. Be sure to reciprocate when possible.   

6. Keep your word 

Follow through on everything you say you’ll do. Your word and reputation are your biggest assets. If you promise to follow up, then follow up. If you say you’ll close a deal, uphold the deal to the highest standard. People make referrals to someone who’s reliable and always there. 

Network with a Chicago Employment Agency 

Find your next role by networking with Casey Accounting & Finance Resources. Our extensive networking and recruitment programs help us place all levels of accounting and finance candidates. Contact our leading finance recruiters today! 

Does Your Company’s Work Environment Impact Productivity?

Productivity levels depend on more than just your employees. Although staff can get more rest at night, eat breakfast, and take other steps to increase their output, there are steps you, the employer, can take to help as well. Focusing on the following areas helps to create a work environment that encourages workers to be more productive.

Lighting

All forms of lighting have a strong impact on productivity. Therefore, you want to provide windows near work areas to promote concentration and comfort. Keep overhead lighting bright to increase feelings of happiness. In winter, offer lamps that compensate for the reduced exposure to sunlight. This will increase calmness and decrease depression.

Company Culture

Cultivate a culture that promotes positivity. Everyone needs support to develop their uniqueness and feel valued. Encourage employees to build networks inside the office so they feel a sense of belonging. People who feel valued at work give their all each day.

Noise Levels

Monitor noise levels within the work environment. Because noise is a top workplace interrupter, it affects productivity. Since some people function better with noise and others without, aim to create room for both types of workers to fill their needs. For instance, install a white noise machine, or enforce quiet hours during the day.

Furnishings

Provide comfortable furnishing for employees. This is especially important if they sit for long periods of time. Include adjustable desks to allow workers to stretch their legs and ergonomic keyboards to prevent wrist injuries. Staff will feel more relaxed, less stressed, and more productive.

Color

Brighten wall colors to stimulate productivity. Low-wavelength colors such as blue and green improve calmness, focus, and efficiency. Medium-wavelength colors like yellow create feelings of happiness, optimism, and creativity. High-wavelength colors such as red increase heart rate and energy level

Designated Spaces

Design dedicated spaces to fill various needs. For instance, provide coworking spaces with relaxation rooms for employees to take a nap or meditate. Offer quiet, private spaces for staff who make frequent calls. Create collaborative spaces for those working on a team project. Include standing desks so workers can gather together to share ideas.

Air Quality

Provide the highest air quality possible. Having more oxygen going to the brain promotes concentration and increases energy. For instance, maintaining the air conditioning system prevents it from dehydrating staff so they stay focused on their work.

Improve Productivity with a Leading Chicago Staffing Firm

Find highly productive staff in the Chicago area with help from Casey Accounting & Finance Resources. Get in touch with our leading finance recruiters today!

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2015 Salary Survey

Happy New Year! 2015 is upon us, and with that, there are updates to salaries in finance and accounting. The compensation trends change every year and with the fluctuating economy, you need to be on top of your game when negotiating salary numbers.

Looking to learn more about what salary expectations should be? Casey Accounting and Finance Resources can help! We have compiled our salary survey list with updated facts and figures including job descriptions for Finance and Accounting positions for  the Chicago metropolitan area.

Contact us today and we will be happy to share this with you.  In the “YOUR MESSAGE” section, please enter “2015 Finance Salary Survey”.  Best wishes to you in 2015!