San Diego, CA

Know Your Worth – Salary Tools

I know I’ve been producing a lot of blogging specific content recently and that not all of my readers are bloggers, so today I thought I’d discuss some general business advice for all my corporate or career girls out there – discussing your salary! 

I’ve been in my current full time role now for over six years and have a reputation for being the queen of yearly reviews. I have the date in my calendar, I keep track of my personal milestones and victories throughout the year, and I solicit feedback from my coworkers. I even complete the review for myself and pull it out during the discussion so I can follow along and add my thoughts as we go through each review topic. Basically, I come into a review fully prepared. It’s definitely worked out in my favor too as each year my specific salary, benefits, and compensation package asks have been granted. 

It’s no secret that overall women report feeling uncomfortable negotiating their salary or asking for appropriate compensation. I’m a big believer in data based decision making so today I’m breaking down my favorite salary estimation & pay scale tools. With a little bit of research and proper planning, you’ll feel confident in your ask and equipped with the right data to help lead your decision makers into your preferred outcome. 

PayScale 

PayScale is a great free tool where you complete their salary survey by answering questions about your role and job functions. You then receive a comprehensive report that shows how your current pay is related to market value and those in similar positions. PayScale uses the data of over 12 million completed survey salaries to produce their market analysis. 

PayScale Salary Tool

LinkedIn 

In order to use the LinkedIn Salary tool, you need a LinkedIn Premium subscription. I pay for mine as I find it great for networking, I love LinkedIn Learning, and I’m trying to build my personal brand on LinkedIn (say hi! if you’re on the platform) but if you don’t have a subscription, there are always a ton of free 30 day trials so you could always sign up before your meeting or review and then cancel afterwards. 

LinkedIn’s Salary tool compares all jobs listed on its platform with employee submitted data to create its reports. While there isn’t a tool to complete a full evaluation on yourself, you can compare what other jobs are paying in your industry/for your position. 

I pulled one of the reports I put together two years ago and thought it might be useful to share exactly how I used this data. I like to present the numbers, explain where I fall in the range, and justify any outliers or anticipate any questions or hesitations that those reviewing my salary may have. I’ve cut and pasted exactly what I included in my one of my reports a few years back:

“The first snapshot is for a Marketing Manager in San Diego, CA with 1 – 5 years experience (these would be considered entry level jobs). While I’m right at that 5 year mark with relevant restaurant experience, I personally believe my job responsibilities are more advanced than most entry level positions. Taking that into consideration, I went ahead and included the 6-14 year data as well for reference but know that this range is so broad it likely is skewed high since it probably includes Directors, Dept. Heads, and other executive marketing managers.” 


GlassDoor 

GlassDoor also has a free Know Your Worth tool. The last time I put together a report, GlassDoor analyzed 663 self-reported salaries and my experience to calculate a market value for me. I included in my report that GlassDoor “has a higher industry range than the other tools; they include executive positions like Directors and Vice Presidents of Marketing within their Marketing Manager category.” Again, I try to think of obstacles or questions that will be brought up and then explain the numbers ahead of time so those reviewing my salary know that I’ve done my research and that the data is meaningful. 


Comparable Jobs 

The last tool really isn’t a tool at all but instead, good old fashioned research. I like to look on Indeed, LinkedIn, etc. and pull a couple of comparable jobs as the last piece of my report. 

I pull a list of open jobs and their salary ranges. I then actually include the full job posting in my personal report. 

For the last report I put together, I included three jobs. The first was one where the salary range included my current pay. When going through the job functions, I realized I would be a top candidate for this position and felt very strongly that if I interviewed, I would either be offered the role or a finalist in the interview process and I told my bosses that. The industry was also related and the role was with a current company in town, so it made it easy for my bosses to compare apples to apples. 

The second job’s salary range was slightly above what I was currently making but I knew I’d be a strong candidate for the position as well. The industry wasn’t related but I was able to go through the job functions and explain why I agreed with their presented salary range. 

The third role was a job that was a little outside my comfort zone and core skill competencies but it highlighted something very important – additional learning opportunities. I was able to pitch to my team that if I could receive a budget for continuing education, I’d be able to strengthen my overall marketing skills and make the department stronger for the organization. 

Like I said earlier, I love to come to a review feeling confident and prepared. These tools would also be great to use when looking for a new role or accepting a new job offer. I keep a record of each year’s report that I put together so I can go back, reference, and show growth over time. I honestly use these tools every year and even print out copies for those involved in my review process so I hope you found them as helpful as I do! 

What other business topics or questions would you like to see covered on the blog? I’m all about providing my readers value so be sure to let me know in the comments below and I’ll add it to my upcoming content calendar! 


Comment

24 Comments

  • Hilary Foye
    September 15, 2020

    Fantastic post- so helpful for those of us who often undervalue our skills! Thank you!

    • Katie
      Hilary Foye
      September 15, 2020

      Thanks Hilary! So glad you found it useful. I’m no where close to perfect but have realized that if I better advocated for myself years ago, the impact would be huge now so I’m now determined to make up for it!

  • Mimi
    September 15, 2020

    This is amazing, I just created my Linkedin profile but I’m still learning how to use it

    • Katie
      Mimi
      September 16, 2020

      Thanks Mimi! I’m actually working on increasing my presence on LinkedIn right now. My goal is to do a whole blog post about how to best utilize the platform once I’m done testing my strategies. You’ll have to come back and check it out!

  • Tisha
    September 15, 2020

    I’ve always questioned my photography session pricing and knowing my worth. I put a lot into my equipment and education and of course time editing. These are great tips

    • Katie
      Tisha
      September 16, 2020

      So glad you found it useful even though you’re not in a salaried or corporate role. I feel for all my creatives out there. I have a lot of the same thoughts working a lot in social media marketing. Sure anyone can “post” on Facebook but they don’t have the strategy and years of development & learning behind them to help you sell a product and make a real difference in a business. The same applies for photography, you know all that goes into it! Charge your worth!!

  • Cassie
    September 16, 2020

    I love this! We won’t get what we won’t ask for and knowledge is power in this case! Thanks for the tools!

    • Katie
      Cassie
      September 16, 2020

      Exactly! You’re so welcome!

  • Heather @ US Japan Fam
    September 16, 2020

    Great tips! Never heard of payscale before, going to head over and look more into that now!

    • Katie
      Heather @ US Japan Fam
      September 16, 2020

      Thanks Heather! I’m all for finding the most data possible through various tools. The more you know, the better you can follow the data’s recommendations easily. Hope you enjoy PayScale, it really it a great tool!

  • Hallie
    September 16, 2020

    Ahhh thank you for this post! So much useful information that I’ll be using soon!

    • Katie
      Hallie
      September 16, 2020

      Glad you liked it Hallie! If you have any other business posts you’d like to see, let me know!

  • Rosemary
    September 17, 2020

    Such useful and practical information when job hunting. It’s always good to know your worth and have a firm foundation for negotiating.

    • Katie
      Rosemary
      September 17, 2020

      Thanks Rosemary! I figured in our current landscape, there are probably a lot of people searching for jobs that could use the info!

  • Lyssa
    September 17, 2020

    I’m so glad that I found this article. I had no idea these kinds of tools even existed! How helpful. I will be looking into these.

    • Katie
      Lyssa
      September 17, 2020

      Thanks Lyssa! If you don’t know what you’re worth, how can you expect to be paid that? 🙂

  • Jen @ JENRON DESIGNS
    September 17, 2020

    Glassdoor is a great tool, I have read so many inside reviews of companies from employees that are very insightful as to the inner workings of the companies.

    • Katie
      Jen @ JENRON DESIGNS
      September 17, 2020

      I complete agree! I’ve found researching a company on Glassdoor before an interview also let’s you address any concerns you may have read. I do find that some disgruntled employees will leave reviews but also can normally find enough good intel from current employees that I keep it as a solid resource.

  • Digitaldaybook
    September 17, 2020

    Very interesting I am going to test this tool out! I never knew!

    • Katie
      Digitaldaybook
      September 17, 2020

      They’re all a little different but definitely all useful!

  • Kait
    September 17, 2020

    This is so helpful! I often have trouble using these types of comparison tools because my job is so unique. There are a couple here I haven’t heard of though, and I will give those a shot.

    • Katie
      Kait
      September 18, 2020

      Thanks Kait! It can definitely be tricky if you’re not in a traditional role but hopefully they help you out!

  • Live2byouJFM
    September 18, 2020

    Very helpful and informative post! I’ll definitely check these tools.

  • MnK
    September 18, 2020

    These are cool tips to know when going for an interview

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