I recently received an offer letter for a full-time position as a Software Engineer for a well-known company, contingent upon my graduation from a university.

Some facts:

  1. Interned (currently) for almost a year with company
  2. Manager likes my work
  3. Received offer for 69k
  4. Friend who works in the same team as me recently graduated from same university and received offer of 70k and currently is working full-time
  5. Glassdoor indicates average salary at same location, same company, and same position as ~71500

I like to know what other's opinion on if I were to counter-offer at 71k?

Given the fact that I already know the program I'm currently involved in, and hiring someone else at a lower pay would be a waste of time (in my opinion), because they would have to be trained

FYI, the company accepts salary negotiations, however, I'm not sure if I'm reaching too far in the cookie jar.

  • 12
    Ask for 72k, let them say 70k, settle on 71k. 2k isn't exactly the greatest negotiation of all time.
    – insidesin
    Sep 11, 2015 at 8:16
  • @joe: I graduate in middle of December
    – Pangu
    Sep 11, 2015 at 19:41

2 Answers 2


You are overthinking this (especially since you are already so close in number). Asking for 2k more is probably less than 2% of your total cost to that company.

I would suggest something like:

  • "First, thank you so much for the offer. I am excited for the opportunity! I'm very seriously considering the offer, but was hoping to see something closer to $75k and a small signing bonus, as my experience with our technology and products will let me immediately begin contributing. What flexibility with this number do you have?"

Or if you want $72k instead of $75k you can say that. As a software engineer you probably could ask for $6k more and get it nearly no questions asked. But replace that with whatever you want.

In most cases the worst they can do is say "no." A company which withdraws a counteroffer asked well (not "I absolutely refuse. I need at least $71k instead of $69k" or whatever) probably is not a place you want to work. Just don't make it a "I reject this offer, and have my own demands" and you'll be fine.

FYI, the company accepts salary negotiations, however, I'm not sure if I'm reaching too far in the cookie jar.

Negotiation is a business interaction for your manager. It has a huge impact on you personally as it is your personal income, but for your manager, it hardly matters and is a minor blip on their daily activities.

Think of it this way: your manager isn't paying you out of a personal pocket. Most places have a budget for positions and as long as the person is good they have flexibility on numbers. If another $2k saves them the hassle of interviewing... that's probably ok to them.

If you argue with your manager about this back and forth multiple rounds, that's one thing, but a simple salary negotiation doesn't really matter much.

  • 1
    Thanks. I sent a counter-offer of $72k. I hope it goes well and they actually accept it :)
    – Pangu
    Sep 15, 2015 at 4:58
  • @Pangu great! Let me know how it goes :)
    – enderland
    Sep 15, 2015 at 13:09
  • 2
    @enderland...they actually accepted my counter-offer today. Now I wished I counter-offer at $75k! :)
    – Pangu
    Sep 25, 2015 at 1:39
  • @Pangu yay! I love it!
    – enderland
    Sep 25, 2015 at 1:58

I would counter with $75K, using the following arguments:

  1. You have been with the company for a year already as an intern, which gave you an opportunity to prove your work performance and establish effective working relationships with the management.

  2. You are familiar with the company's technology, software lifecycle, and project management approach.

Therefore you believe your counter-offer for a higher starting salary is commensurate with your skill set, experience, and the overall industry market.

They will likely respond with a counter that is $1-2K over the initial offer and will say that this is the best they can do.

You happily agree on their counter and everyone ends up feeling they got the better end of the bargain. A win-win. Good luck!

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