Realistic salary expectations


21 March 2016

salary expectations

After diligently searching job boards and googling for days, checking and double-checking company vacancy pages and signing up for all the email alerts under the sun, you finally find a perfect job spec that screams “I’m yours!” You breathe a sigh of relief and quickly open your email to get your application sent. Then you notice the salary range. Your heart sinks as you see that your ideal role in the ideal location is being offered at a salary that is even lower that what you’d set as your bare minimum. But does that mean your expectations are too high, or that the salary in question is lower than it should be for the role and location?

Start with the basics. Is the vacancy in a busy city centre or a quiet town miles from anywhere? Is it in the north or the south? Does the role involve management of any kind? What level of qualification and experience does it require? Don’t just look at a job title and make a judgement – make sure you have interpreted the job spec as accurately as possible. If the job spec states a number of years of experience is required, for example, this is not an entry-level job, and should therefore be paid at a higher rate than a junior.

Don’t ever assume that you just know how much a particular role is worth – do a bit of research. How does the salary compare to similar roles in the exact same area? If you don’t know, you have no way of judging if the salary offered is fair or not, and there is no point in comparing a salary in London with one in Newcastle. In London, the cost of living is higher and businesses can charge more for their services, so salaries will tend to reflect that. Clinic chains will often pay more to their clinicians in London than the clinicians in Leeds, though they are doing the same job for the same company.

Another thing to check on a job advert is whether the salary is offered with commission or a bonus. Though the amount of commission it is possible to earn may not be stated in black and white, generally it does mean that if you are good at your job, you are highly likely to earn more than the advertised salary. Many roles in aesthetic medicine, including clinical staff, will have a sales target, and a target that is not set so high that it is unobtainable.

Just remember that the majority of companies mean what they say when they list a certain salary. If the salary is listed as “to £30,000” for example, don’t just expect to be able to push them up by a few thousand pounds based on your skills and experience, or your dazzling demeanour. Though some candidates may end up on a salary higher than the advertised rate, this is not that common.

If you find that, after researching roles and rates, you are looking at a lower salary than you expected, don’t be too disheartened. You may be able to do further training to enhance your credentials, and with a bit more experience under your belt, in a couple of years you could be in your dream job, on your ideal salary.

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