I need some advice for software engineering position salaries and contract rates. I've uploaded my resume on indeed, monster, linkedin, etc and I've been getting phone calls for a few weeks now. Headhunters are calling me left and right. Anyways, I am always a bit uncomfortable when they ask me how much money I am making and what rate will work for me (given that benefits will not be included). Aside from the fact that I feel undervalued at my current salary and I will be meeting with my supervisor to push for a promotion next week, I really can't put a finger on what is a fair contract rate. I currently make about $93k (I have about 6 years of professional experience and live in the Central Florida region) which is roughly 44.33/hr. I believe I am making above my experience level (if anyone else can confirm).
I did the math on W2 contract rates. The benefits that I get from my company comes out to be 1.362 the rate of my current hourly wage (being conservative on healthcare etc). In any case, I told the recruiter, around ~60-61/hr would work for me. Of course, the recruiter goes for the lower number but I wonder to myself if this is even compensatory.
Given the fact that I've built an argument for promotion and I feel confident that the support among my team members will be there for me to obtain it, leaving a job for roughly an equivalent salary doesn't sound right to me. I somehow feel lowballed and I don't know how to deal with headhunters because they all seem a bit on the cheap side given they always ask me my rate (and I feel if I give them the wrong range, they won't ever talk to me again).
Since he is going to set up an interview at $60/hr and I don't feel this rate is advancement in my career I just don't know how to get it across to the recruiter that this will just not fly if he is only going to consider my bottom number. I want to feel somewhat valued in my job and salary is a piece of that valuation. Would the recruiter be irritated if I ask for a reconsideration on the rate (because I'm kinda reneging on my earlier number)?