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I'm in a position where I'm mostly happy with my current job, but still keeping an eye open for possible better opportunities. All companies publish detailed descriptions of the job, the expected skills, the workplace and such, but still too few indicate a salary range straight away.

There are positions that are worth applying to only if the salary range meets my current expectations, and I don't want to waste anybody's time applying only to discover that they cannot pay as much as I expect. At the same time I don't want to miss a good opportunity just because they didn't publish that detail, when it could have been good for me.

How to behave in this situation? Should I simply mail them saying that I'm interested in applying but only if they pay more than X? Is there a more professional way?

EDIT
Just to clarify the situation: I'm a developer and I would be applying in a country different from my own. On one side I'm looking for a higher than average salary, on the other I do not know the average offered salary for the country.

  • I'm looking for higher than average salary (not necessarily extremely high though), and I'm a developer. Moreover I would be applying in a (european) country which is not my own, so I don't really know the average ranges here. – mjsarfatti Aug 5 '16 at 11:15
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    Not knowing the average salary due to a different company is important, and makes my previous comment irrelevant, so I've deleted it. :) I suggest editing the info into your question. – AndyT Aug 5 '16 at 11:18
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Option 1: research the company's salaries on a site like GlassDoor.

Option 2: ask them (circumspectly) about salary ranges.

Companies will often be reluctant to state a range directly, because it reduces their negotiating power later. For the same reason, you shouldn't say "I'm only interested in jobs that pay at least X", because then you have probably limited yourself in future negotiations--they know you are willing to work for X.

A possible approach to this issue without anyone revealing too much directly, is to research the salary ranges for that sort of position. Then say something like:

I have done some research into similar positions and found that companies are often paying between X and Y for experienced people in this role. Would an expectation of a salary within this range be reasonable for this position?

This might be more successful because:

  1. They don't have to disclose their actual range, only whether the range you mention overlaps theirs.
  2. You haven't revealed a specific salary demand.

Make sure that X meets your personal minimum (if your research turns up a salary range that is too low, then this approach won't work well).

  • I would probably say between X and Y depending on experience and exactly what the role entails. This will give you more negotiating power if you go in and ask for the upper end of what they were hoping to pay. – NibblyPig Aug 5 '16 at 11:48
  • I have just clarified my answer, the problem is that the question would rather be "Would an expectation of a salary on the upper end of, or above this range be reasonable for this position?" – mjsarfatti Aug 5 '16 at 12:31
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I just email and ask for the salary range for the advertised job. Some don't reply, some do. Either way it only took me a few seconds.

You can't pin too many hopes on an OS position, so spending a lot of time trying to research etc, is mostly wasted. In my job hunting days I'd have multiple applications active, I only need one to fit my needs. Salary range was my major initial filter method.

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Typically, a recruiter will ask what sort of salary you are expecting when making first contact, or when they call to ask if you would be interested in a position. If you have done your research you can give them a range which you expect to receive (with the real amount you expect closer to the middle or lower end) or you can try to make them make you an offer by asking them to suggest what you might be worth to them.

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