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I have done an 8 month intern term (software dev). For the first four months, I was payed 23, and for the remaining four months, I was payed 23.5

Another company is going to hire me soon (the gap will have been 8 months since i ended my last workterm), and I would like the pay to be about 25.

If they give me around 24, then I would like to say the following, and would like feedback on whether it is plausible or not.

Thank you for this offer xxx. I would like to know if it is possible to increase my pay to 25. This slightly extra pay will help me to pay for my 2 buses that I must take on this 1.5hr commute. I also think that my experience in an actual company prior, and self-projects should be taken into consideration. A 50 cent increase from 23.5 does not seem the most optimal in my situation. Finally I have seen on glassdoor that you do support this wage for interns, so I am wondering if it is possible for me to have 25. Thanks again for the offer.

  • Are you talking USD here? If so that's terrific pay for an intern, right? – Fattie Feb 20 '19 at 15:18
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    CAD, I think USD is better – K Split X Feb 20 '19 at 15:19
  • It seems like great pay, maybe I'm mistaken. Good luck! Yes, the increase you ask for is totally appropriate and OK. I have made some important suggestions to your language in the answer. Good luck! – Fattie Feb 20 '19 at 15:27
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    Possible duplicate of How should I properly approach my boss if I'm feeling underpaid? – gnat Feb 20 '19 at 17:03
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It doesn't hurt to ask, but leave personal reasons out of your request for a higher salary. Reiterate that you are excited about the position. Mention your research and previous experience, and then ask for the higher rate.

Something like this:

Thank you for this offer xxx. Based on the interview, I feel like we are a great fit for each other and I am excited to work on project xyz. However, I was expecting a rate of 25, which matches the market rate for similar positions. This is a fair rate to me based on my previous experience with CompanyA and my personal projects x and y. Could we update the rate to 25? Thanks again for the offer.

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  • Yep. Employees get paid for the value they bring to the company, not how much they need money. Why OP needs more money is irrelevant. OP should do an assessment of value they bring, which will be a useful skill in future job searches, CV/resume structuring, and selling oneself and a valuable candidate in a recruiting process. – PoloHoleSet Feb 20 '19 at 16:37
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You can ask for a higher pay, but the reasons you list may not be the optimal way of getting it.

I would think twice before mentioning Glassdoor. It's not the company's official information channel, and they have no control over what has been posted there. Also, "I want higher pay because somebody else has it too" argument might not be well received.

Then, the commute expenses. Commute, or living expenses in general, should have no part in your salary. The cost of living determines the overall accepted range for salary in the region, but you can't really use that as an argument for a raise. Your employer doesn't have a say where you happen to live, so the costs of your decision shouldn't be on them.

I'd suggest to focus only on your strengths and the value you bring to the company. Your previous experience and projects you have completed/worked on are good arguments.

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  • To shorten my commute would be to rent a place near, which would be much more costlier then asking for 1 extra dollar – K Split X Feb 20 '19 at 15:19
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You can ask a higher wage for an internship. It will mostly depends on whether the company has a standard wage for interns or not.

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Regarding specifically your language question, here's some help

Thank you for this offer xxx. I would like to know if it is possible to increase my pay to 25. This slightly extra pay will help me to pay for my 2 buses that I must take on this 1.5hr commute. I also think that my experience in an actual company prior, and self-projects should be taken into consideration. A 50 cent increase from 23.5 does not seem the most optimal in my situation. Finally I have seen on glassdoor that you do support this wage for interns, so I am wondering if it is possible for me to have 25. Thanks again for the offer.

The first part is excellent, but the second part is no good.

Thank you for this offer xxx. I would like to know if it would be possible to increase that pay amount to 25. This extra amount will help me to pay for the two buses I take on the 1.5 hr commute, and would be much appreciated. I hope my real and substantial experience at a company and my demonstrated skills help make this possible! Please, let me know what you think about the 25 level. Would it be possible? Thanks again for the offer which is so exciting to be a part of your company!

Your negotiation/communication ideas here are:

  1. Never (ever) whine.

  2. Never try to "logically trap" a superior or the opposite side of any supplication. By all means be firm, but do not try to "logically win"

  3. Be totally firm, yet polite.

  4. "Enthusiasm never hurt anyone."

  5. Accept that a demand is a demand. Don't try to put your demand over as anything other than a clean demand. ie, totally avoid you "deserve" thinking.

  6. Always finish with a question - the number one negotiating trick.

Good luck!

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  • Any request for wages or increases should be focused on what you can offer the employee and not what you need the money for.
  • I would also leave out the market assessment: it sounds like you are second guessing them on something they should know. And if they do not, they might resent being lectured to.
  • Your ask and their offer are very close already. Weigh the value of that difference against the potential downsides, e.g. coming across as demanding, and perhaps being skipped over in the future when potentially more lucrative increases are being considered because "you already got yours".
  • If you are a good software developer, or you become one, you will eventually be making a whole lot more money than either their offer or your ask. Focus on improving your skills and the rewards will follow.
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  • This answer makes exactly the same excellent points as my answer - hence, it is a very intelligent and excellent answer! :) The first two points are the key. – Fattie Feb 20 '19 at 15:28

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