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Salaries & Job Offers

Salaries & Job Offers


Explore And Research Salaries

    • Great place to search by job title to explore occupations and to get a snapshot of any given job on a daily basis (work activities, skills, and knowledge needed etc). This site also features salary information and job growth trends.
    • Salary information by company and position based on data shared by users. Also, includes insights for the interview process.
  • SCU Outcomes Survey 2014
    • This is based on surveys filled out by SCU grads 6 months after graduation.
  • NACE Salary Calculator
    • You can add information relating to your education, employment history, and other factors to create accurate compensation and employment guidance.
  • Additional salary tools for students interested in working for start-ups:
Thinking of relocating?

Consider using a cost of living calculator if you plan on working outside of CA. A salary offer may be lower, but may net you a higher living standard depending on the state.

Evaluating Job Offers

Congratulations, you got a job offer! Now what?
As a new college graduate, should I negotiate my salary?
  • You are not required or obligated to negotiate salary.
  • Large companies often have pre-determined starting salaries based on market compensation analysis. These starting salaries are often non-negotiable.
  • One reason to consider negotiating salary is to ensure you are being offered a fair market value for your skills ans experience. Don’t negotiate only for the sake of negotiating.
  • One question to ask yourself: Do I possess qualifications above and beyond what is listed in the job description? If the answer is no, it’s likely you do not have a credible reason to ask for a higher salary. As you gain more experience, skills, and expertise, you will have more leverage to negotiate.
As you evaluate a job offer, consider:
  • Are the work environment, position duties, and management style a good fit for me?
  • What is the job market like right now for current students and recent grads?
  • How much relevant experience do I have? Do my skills and strengths apply directly to the
  • position/industry?
  • Do I have directly applicable experience like an internship, research, fellowship, leadership or volunteer experience?
If I decide to negotiate, how do I go about it?
  • Call and start by expressing your gratitude for the offer and how honored you are to be offered an opportunity to work for the company. Next, add that there are one or two things you would like to discuss before signing the offer letter.
  • Do not negotiate everything. Decide on one or two things that are important to you.
  • Frame the conversation in terms of mutual goals. Keep it neutral and impersonal. Instead of saying, “Can YOU increase the salary offer?” use a neutral phrase such as “Does THE COMPANY have any flexibility to increase the salary offer?”
  • Be open to alternatives. They may suggest a signing bonus or early review if there is no flexibility on salary.
  • Look for a mutually acceptable solution. This is the beginning of a long relationship, not a one-time competition.
  • Know your bottom line. Be aware of what you need (your minimum requirements to support yourself) and what you want (your ideal starting salary).
  • Be flexible. Remember, salary is only one piece of your offer package. Consider other aspects of the offer package which include employee benefits.

Employee Benefits

  • In addition to salary, you should add benefits into your offer package. You may be surprised that a lower paying job with great benefits can put you ahead when compared to a higher paying job. Talk to the company’s Human Resources representative to get details about the company’s benefits.
  • Here is a quick overview:
    1. Health Insurance. The most common benefit is health insurance. Carefully review the company’s options to determine the right plan for you. This may also include dental, vision, and disability insurance.
    2. 401k retirement plan. Some companies will match your 401k contributions up to a certain percentage of your salary.
    3. Paid vacation and sick time. These will accrue as you work.
    4. Life Insurance. Generally your employer will pay for the amount of one year’s salary, while giving you the option to purchase additional coverage.
    5. Stock Options. Your employer may offer stock options, which allow you to purchase the company’s stock at a pre-determined price. The company will put a waiting period on when your options vest and can be exercised. It is generally used as an incentive to keep you at the company.
    6. Flexible Spending Accounts. This account will allow you to set aside pre-tax dollars to pay for medical and daycare expenses. Flexible spending accounts are a great way to decrease your taxable income.
What other items can I negotiate besides salary?
  • Start date
  • Vacation time
  • Signing bonus
  • Early performance review and salary review
  • Relocation expenses
  • Flex time or work from home
  • Performance bonus
  • Professional development


What if I accept an offer and then decide that I would rather accept a different one?

Consider this
  • Hiring is a long and resource intensive process. After you have completed the interview process and have accepted a job or internship offer, human resources and your future boss and team are likely relieved and excited to be bringing you on-board. Not to mention, rejection letters are sent out to all the other candidates. Put yourself in their shoes. How would it feel to start the hiring process over again?
  • Companies do not take reneging (backing out after you've accepted an offer) lightly. You run the risk of jeopardizing opportunities for future SCU students by possibly damaging the recruiting relationship between SCU and the company.
  • Recruiters (and hiring managers) change companies, so you never know when and where your reputation for reneging will follow you.
The rule of thumb
  • Do not accept an offer before you are ready. Once you accept a job offer, you should stop all other interviewing.
  • Once you make a commitment to start the job, it would be viewed as unprofessional should you renege on your commitment. Acceptance of an employment offer should be made in good faith and with the sincere intention to honor the commitment.
  • If you find yourself in an ethical dilemma about having accepted a position and realizing that it was not the best decision for you, please discuss this with a member of the Career Center staff.

What if I like the offer, but I am still waiting to hear from other employers?
  • Make sure you get an offer in writing that includes salary, job title, start date, eligibility for benefits, and a signature from the organization’s representative.
  • Occasionally an employer may give you a much shorter time frame, possibly 24-48 hours to pressure you to accept an offer.
  • Come into the Career Center for a drop-in appointment to discuss the offer you have received and how to negotiate with the employer if you need more time to make a decision. Some employers will extend the time, others will not, so you will need to consider your options carefully.
What if I don't like the offer and want to turn it down?
  • Make sure you have given yourself enough time to properly evaluate the offer.
  • If the position is not a good fit for you, demonstrate your appreciation and respect by turning down the offer as quickly as possible.
  • Call the employer to verbally decline or write a brief letter.