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Negotiating a Contract

By: Emma Jones - Updated: 8 Jul 2013 | comments*Discuss
Contract Negotiate How To Negotiate

In most cases, although a company will offer you a set contract, you can always negotiate it. Once they have offered you the job, you are in a strong position as they obviously want to get you onboard and need someone to fill the position. Knowing how to negotiate a contract could get you thousands of pounds more than they are offering, as well as extra benefits and better working conditions. But to succeed, you need to know what you want, be able to explain why you are worth it, and be clear about what you are willing to settle for.

What Do You Want?

Before you start trying to negotiate any contract, you need to be clear about what it is that you are trying to achieve. Do you want more money? Are you looking for flexible hours or better benefits, or do you want to be given more holiday time? Whatever it is that you want, focus on it. It is fine to overshoot a little bit as you need to leave room for negotiation, but be realistic. If you ask for things that are entirely unreasonable, you won’t get a very pleasant response.

Why Do You Deserve It?

Once you have decided what it is that you want to negotiate about your contract, you need to be able to justify it. If you want more money, show what other people are earning, compare it to your old wages and prove the Extra Skills and experience that you have. Be able to give practical examples for all of your points and be ready to sell yourself as the only person that can do the job well.

Planning Your Attack

If you know what you want and can justify your requests, you are already halfway there. Now you need to decide how to bring the matter up. Pick a suitable time with the right people and be open and honest about what you want. Don’t ask for anything that is too extravagant as they will be less willing to negotiate. However, always ask for a little more than you actually want so it gives you both room to barter.

Knowing When You’ll Settle

When you are negotiating a contract both parties will be trying to get what they want. Sometimes you will win and sometimes you won’t. Therefore, you need to know at what point you are willing to settle. Decide what you absolutely have to have and what you could let go. If they won’t give it to you then stick to your principles and be prepared to turn down the job.

There is no harm in knowing how to negotiate any contract. The worst they can say is no. Decide exactly what it is that you want and prepare your arguments to justify your requests. Be open and honest about the matter and show a little give and take. However, you need to know what you are willing to settle for and be willing to walk away if you can’t agree.

How to Impress Decision Makers

If you are trying to negotiate your current contract, you need to make sure you have impressed the right people at work. Read Our Guide to making sure you show your abilities and potential to those who decide on redundancy, promotion or pay rises.

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