My recruiter will submit my resume to a potential position with a rate to the hiring manager. If an offer is in place is it a good idea to renegotiate on the rate even though an initial rate was submitted?

My hope is not to burn bridges. My goal is to find a current competitive rate based on location. My struggle is finding the appropriate rate based on location due to having to use past data. I am a strong believer that good recruiters deserve their share.

  • 1
    Would the recruiter's firm be paying you or would the hiring manager's company be paying you directly?
    – JB King
    Feb 14 '14 at 18:02
  • Hiring manager's company.
    – otaku
    Feb 14 '14 at 18:31
  • Do you actually know the rate that the recruiter is presenting to the hiring manager? Or only the amount that you will be receiving after the recruiter's commission? Feb 14 '14 at 21:29
  • Only the amount that I will be receiving after the recruiter's commission.
    – otaku
    Feb 14 '14 at 22:15

My recruiter will submit my resume to a potential position with a rate to the hiring manager. If an offer is in place is it a good idea to renegotiate on the rate even though an initial rate was submitted?

It could be different where you work, but in my part of the world, that would be too late to try and negotiate a new rate.

When I hire contractors, I learn their rate from the recruiter at the same time as I see their resume, and before I do a phone-screen. The rate is often one of the attributes used when choosing a contractor.

Once I choose among the contractors, I offer her/him the position at the specified rate.

If the contractor then attempted to re-negotiate the rate, I'd just drop him/her quickly and move on to the next candidate.

  • Thanks Joe and 1 up. Good point and I will put that in consideration. However if I bring more to the table than other candidates in my opinion there should be room for negotiation.
    – otaku
    Feb 14 '14 at 18:39
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    @domu904 - I would be livid if you attempted to change the contract at that point. In addition to doing as Joe says and moving to the next candidate, I'd put you on my personal blacklist as "untrustworthy", and I'd never accept a bid from you again.
    – Adam V
    Feb 14 '14 at 18:50

Think about this: they have the right to negotiate the initial rate, right? So, by definition of the term "negotiate", you should be able to do so as well.
But, as you might have guessed, it's more complicated than that.

It's perfectly acceptable, of course, to negotiate if the offer is below your initial demands. But, if it matches the initial demand, well - it won't look so good as it triggers an alarm signal: "is he trying to pull of some sort of scam here?". How bad would look will depend on your skills and the current market.

I guess it could work to play the honesty card: just tell them, sincerely, what changed your mind.


Sure, everything is negotiable, always.

Circumstances change. You may want to work for company A, but company B comes in and makes you another offer of $20K / year more.

You can,

a) Still work for company A at the original rate (Company A wins)

b) Go to work for company B (Company B wins, you win)

c) Renegotiate your rate with company A based on the offer from company B (You win, and the company that is willing to pay more wins)

As a side note, I have done exactly this, and more often than not company A finds the 20K to see the counteroffer. Sometimes they don't, and are no longer interested in hiring you - that's why it's important to have a REAL offer from Company B, and not just a bluff.

  • 1
    This answer would make more sense in the employer/employee sense than the contractor sense. Typically contracts are a bit more solid than this, and renegotiating in the middle is likely to put a project in jeopardy.
    – Adam V
    Feb 14 '14 at 18:58
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    @AdamV: Contracts are only agreements regarding the rate paid for hours worked and the usual conditions incidental to employment. Companies can drop contractors at will, and should be prepared for contractors to leave a project for various reasons, including a more lucrative offer. Certainly employers should not be surprised when contractors ask for a better rate moving into the second year of work. Feb 18 '14 at 6:47

No the recruiter is doing that on your behalf if you dont trust the recruiter to negotiate your rate dont use them.

Trying to have a second go after the fact just looks dodgy and very very unprofessional.

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