I have been recently approached by a recruiter from another company. I agreed to go through recruitment proccess and at the begining I have stated my expected salary which I set pretty high.

On the other hand I like my current job very much for various reasons, so if my rate would be accepted I would want first to renegotiate my compensation in current job.

Now my question is: If a recruiter from the new company would offer me the salary I asked for in the first place, should I tell them that first I will try to renegotiate my current salary? Or should I just say that I need some time to think about it? (which I don't really like because if I got raise in my current job it would seem as if I wasted recruiters time since they agreed to my terms)

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    What do you expect to gain by stating that you will renegotiate first?
    – Mars
    Commented Feb 26, 2020 at 9:47
  • 3
    @Mars don't expect to gain anything, I wanted to be transparent about my actions but that's where I hesitate, hence my question
    – aMJay
    Commented Feb 26, 2020 at 9:50
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    You might love your job, but they may start to like you less if you pull something like this. I know there are many questions on the site about leveraging an offer to get a raise, so be sure you really understand what you're getting into before attempting that.
    – JPhi1618
    Commented Feb 26, 2020 at 18:33
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    "which I don't really like because if I got raise in my current job it would seem as if I wasted recruiters time" So you would rather explicitly tell them that you are wasting their time?
    – sf02
    Commented Feb 26, 2020 at 20:47
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    @aMJay Any information you share with the buyer of a product helps them make a better purchasing decision as a buyer; it does not always help you as the seller. (In this case, the product is your time and experience.) Controlling the flow of information is part of the game of negotiating a sell.
    – employee-X
    Commented Feb 28, 2020 at 16:36

5 Answers 5


NO, you should not mention this to the interviewer

Two points:

  • The recruiter does not have anything to do with the knowledge about how you want to make a decision (negotiation in current organization or not), they don't need to know that.
  • Just because an organization offered you the expected salary does not mean you are bound to accept the offer, there are several other factors which comes into play while making a decision for accepting (or rejecting) a job offer. In other words, it's up to every individual about why they want to accept or reject an offer.

To sum it up, once you have an offer, you can ask for some time to think about it, and in the meantime, you can do your negotiation and based on the outcome, you can reply to the offer.

which I don't really like because if I got raise in my current job it would seem as if I wasted recruiters time since they agreed to my terms

Again, to provide some perspective, if after clearing the interview process the organization is not willing to pay the expected amount to you, that can also be perceived as wasted time, can it not? An interview and a job offer is not a one-way street, it's a two-party discussion and negotiation where both parties should be happy with the deal - otherwise, even if there's a deal, it's not going to last long. Don't overthink it. Do what you planned and work based on outcome.


Can I get a "Hell no!" ?

Using other solid offers as negotiation capital isn't bad in of itself - and while the individual(s) your interviewing may well understand what you're doing and may well even have done the same themselves in similar situations you aren't just interacting with them as individuals but as representatives of the interviewing company. And saying that to them in that capacity is essentially saying

I'm just wasting your valuable time and energy for my own ends, we cool?

That might not be exactly correct - it's not unreasonable to think that you might be seriously considering the offer to move if it's good enough but be prepared to stay where you are if they come up with a decent counter offer but you seriously risk that the above is all they are going to hear. Which isn't going to go down well.

What's more even if they don't take your statements in the worst light there's literally nothing to be gained by doing so - you can still use the offer in counteroffer negotiations with your existing employer and if you want to use any counter offer to renegotiate then you're free to do so. There's no arbitrary rule saying they can't go higher to counter the counter if that makes sense.

In 99% of cases you're better off keeping information to yourself - only revealing it if there's a clear benefit to you in the offing.


There is likely nothing to gain from your transparency. They may take offense and rescind their offer.

If you want more time, just say you need time to consider everything. Even better, say that you are expecting* another offer shortly and would like to make your decision after seeing all the results.

*Note, here "expecting" is important. You will come across as fickle if you use "might" or "think you might" or some other weak phrasing.

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    +1 I'd also like to add, when the OP approaches their current employer, they should avoid saying they have an offer on the table and just approach their employer as an employee who believes they're doing a good job and would like to be considered for a raise. Then, if they get the raise, they know it's an honest reward, rather than their employer doing what it takes just to keep them around for a bit while they hedge their bets. Then--if they get the raise--they should absolutely never mention that they had an offer on the table.
    – elrobis
    Commented Feb 26, 2020 at 18:42
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    +1 Basically, you are sending a message that you are a potential time-waster, so far as the recruiting company is concerned - you don't really want their job, you just want a salary offer that you can use to twist somebody else's arm.
    – alephzero
    Commented Feb 26, 2020 at 19:12

I tell recruiters my salary requirement to hire me away from my current position. If some company wants to interview me, and would offer that amount, and there is nothing exceptionally terrible about working for that company, I'm prepared to switch jobs.

If I were in your position, I would simply increase the salary requirement until you would no longer feel the need to go back to your current employer and attempt to negotiate a raise with a competing offer. Also, if you feel your current employer is underpaying you - even with the things about the job you like - it seems like you should ask for a raise. (And if your current employer doesn't give you that raise, moving to another company which is willing to meet your salary expectation becomes easier to justify.)


If you use such offer for increase your current salary, you might get desired increase, but your boss will get notified that you are on your way out. So they might cut you when it is convenient for them, not you.

Look for questions about counter-offers like Will counter offer work in this situation?

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