There are various opportunities to get rewarded for your contributions and accomplishments. Generally, a promotion means getting a raise at work. But what should you focus on? Having an increase in your base salary or getting a bonus?
Usually, the basic salary is more significant compared to other forms of compensation in the long term. Always look for ways to negotiate for an increase in base salary over bonuses. Here are 4 reasons why you should:
- Bonuses are generally based on the percentage of your basic salary. Imagine if you have a higher base salary, your bonuses will increase as well and this does not work in reverse even if you negotiate for a better bonus.
- Your basic salary can imply seniority and higher value whereas bonuses do not exactly account for position level. Your basic salary is the one that recruiters and hiring managers look at for consideration. Therefore even if you are the best employee in your current company with equal pay to your colleagues, you could be overlooked by potential employers during the candidate screening process.
- Bonuses do not carry over and will vary with different job offers from different companies. All the effort you have put up for your current company may not be translated into anything at your future jobs. That said, there is a chance for negotiation but it is less likely for a company to be flexible when it comes to bonuses or other forms of incentive.
- Bonuses are not exactly guaranteed compared to an increase in the base salary which can be negotiated during the hiring or promotion. Companies opted to provide bonuses compared to giving raises is because it is a one-shot deal. Now that most companies no longer seek out what is your current salary before offering you a new job, your decision to take the offer or not is based on your current salary.
If you are focusing on negotiating for an increment on your basic salary, you can progress further in your future job offer. It would increase your bonus indirectly as long it based on a percentage of your basic salary. So it is best to prioritise your basic salary and only consider your bonuses such as cash bonus, vacation time, etc as secondary benefits.
Related: What You Should Do When You Get a Raise at Work
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You Jing is a content writer who writes career and lifestyle contents to inspire job seekers and employers alike on their journey to work-life balance, empowerment and transformation in their career path.
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