Short version : How best to negotiate increased number of days off (or "equivalents" : working part time (80-90%), accumulating extra hours as days off) instead of higher salary?
Long version : A bit over a year ago, I was officially hired by a big company B, in order to work on a joint engineering project with startup A. In practice, all the interviews and even negotiation happened with company A, and I spent all my time working at company A. Salary was a bit low but still Ok (the CEO of A offered what he sought was the max B could pay for my years of experience, overestimated it even a bit, but decided to pay for the difference).
Now the contract with B is near its end, and company A would like to hire me directly (no legal issues: intellectual property is owned by A, no clause in contract forbidding it, company B also profits if I stay and the project continues). The CEO of A just contacted me to setup a meeting to discuss it.
On my side, I would be happy to stay (nice team, interesting projects, nice location), provided I get a good offer (but I have no problem walking away otherwise : I have no family to feed, enough money aside for a long time, and a strong enough CV to easily find another job).
What I would like to achieve :
- get payed according to my skill level : comparing to 2 other colleagues with the nearest roles, this should be about +20% (NB : previously I wasn't on the payroll of company A, and company B had better benefits. Company A knows my salary at company B)
- trade some/most of this "increase" into more days off rather than salary. Those "days off" can take whatever form : extra days off, working part time (80% or 90%), or just having a 35 hours/week contract with extra hours taken as hours/days off some time later.
The best possible outcome would be an 80% contract with a slight increase on the yearly salary.
This might seem a rather "high" increase, but I have a few arguments :
- until now, I was mainly limited to work on a specific project : I can now work on whatever project the company needs me
- I was hired for my knowledge in field F. I'm also skilled in field G, which I used for the project, but also to do lots of support/debug for the company, in which nobody else is really skilled in G (and the only one with always decent skill is leaving the company)
- finding someone able to replace me for both fields is difficult, and the CEO never wanted to hire someone specifically for G (it's partly outsourced with poor results, and partly just badly done when I'm not helping)
- I already know all the projects, so no need to train someone new
- It's far easier for me to find another job than for them to replace me
So I'm in a rather stronger position than usual, and both side know well the other one.
So how best to negotiate for more days/time off in priority (more salary is less important)?
Any good ideas how to convince the CEO to accept more time off (main arguments so far are
- it not, I ask for far more salary
- it gives more flexibility to increase workload before deadlines)?