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Playing Your Cards Right: How Gathering Multiple Offers Can Help You Get a Higher Salary When Switching Jobs

Source: Zip

Switching jobs can be an exciting opportunity for workers to increase their earnings, but how large a wage bump you get depends on multiple factors.

Negotiating your job offer is often cited as the way to increase your salary, but ZipRecruiter economists have found the story is more complicated.

It is not negotiating alone that gets you higher wages—rather, it is negotiating with multiple job offers in hand.

According to data from the latest ZipRecruiter Survey of New Hires, 70% of recent job switchers increased their pay when they changed jobs.

Among the 70% of job switchers who increased their pay, the average pay increase was 25%. Those who reported negotiating did not receive significantly higher wage increases than those who did not.

But those who negotiated and had multiple job offers received significantly larger wage gains—a 2.3 percentage point (ppt) boost, on average, to be precise.

In addition to having multiple offers, having a college degree, being under the age of 55, and having more prior work experience were also associated with larger wage increases for job switchers.

College degree holders were able to get an additional 3.3 ppt boost, compared to non-degree holders. Workers under the age of 25 got the largest wage increases, in percentage terms, with prime-age workers receiving about 3-5 ppts less, and workers over age 55 receiving about 10 ppts less.

That is partly because younger workers tend to increase their earnings relatively quickly at the start of their careers, as they gain experience, whereas older workers often choose to move into lower-paying jobs that are less demanding and that offer greater flexibility and work-life balance.