The Ultimate Salary Negotiation Script For Every Scenario

The Ultimate Salary Negotiation Script For Every Scenario

Whether you’re countering a new offer or asking for a raise, practicing negotiation skills is critical for everyone. This is especially true when you consider how out of practice most employees are when they negotiate with HR recruiters and hiring managers that negotiate salary dozens of times per month—for HR—and per year—for hiring managers. Employees only change jobs 5 - 7 times in their career. Add in an annual negotiation for a salary raise or promotion and the cards are still stacked against employees. 

Instead of relying on limited experience, consider the following best practices for salary negotiation—and get specific salary negotiation script examples you can use today: 

Salary Negotiation Tips and Best Practices

While most employees worry about countering a job offer—for fear of rejection or appearing greedy—75% of employers are willing to negotiate. Understanding salary negotiation tips and best practices—vetted by the years and years of experience from recruiters on our team—can help you find success. 

Here are a few tips: 

1. Understand where you should negotiate—email, phone, or in-person.
Negotiating a new job offer over the phone or in person can be more impactful, but if your job offer arrives in an email, check out our tips on how to negotiate a job offer through email

2. Be quick about your response time.

It’s critical to show respect throughout the entire interview process, but it’s even more important when you’re in the negotiation phase of accepting a new job offer (or a promotion). Because of this, always show respect for the HR recruiter or the hiring manager’s time. Never let an offer sit in your inbox or make an employer wait for more than 24 hours for your response. Ask for time to review, but keep that time to less than 24 hours. 

3. Understand how the business ranks your role.

Most businesses level each of their roles so they can clearly define a salary range for each position. Understanding where your role ranks and what the company’s compensation philosophy details (most often it can dictate if the business pays at a specific percentile based on industry standards for the salary), can help you craft your counteroffer. 

4. Get familiar with industry salary standards.

For most employees, using free, unverified salary data is the best approach to understanding average salaries for each industry and role. But what most employees don’t understand is that employers pay for employer-only datasets that give them verified salary data, helping them know exactly how much each role is worth. To combat this, sign up for FairComp to get verified, anonymized salary data

5. Always show excitement and gratitude. 

HR and hiring managers will always be on the outlook for a new hire’s fit with the new team. If you act entitled, rude, or disrespectful during the interview process or during the negotiation phase, this throws a serious red flag and your offer can be rescinded. Always show excitement for the job, gratitude for the opportunity, and respect for everyone’s time.

The Best Salary Negotiation Script Format

Whether you’re using one of the salary negotiation scripts we’ve outlined in the section below or you’re writing your own, follow this template to ensure you hit all of the right talking points: 

1. Express excitement for the job offer/raise. 

Always thank the company for the offer/your manager for the raise. Showing excitement creates a positive first impression without committing to the offer. 


“Thank you for the job offer!”

“I’m really excited about this offer—I really appreciate this opportunity.”

2. Share something positive about the interview/your job.

To keep the positive momentum going, share something you enjoyed about the interview process/something you enjoy about the team or your job.


“I really enjoyed meeting everyone throughout the interview process.” 

“I’ve really enjoyed working on project X this year—it’s been great to see so much impact at the business.”

3. Ask for time to review the offer/the promotion.

Be clear that you want some time to review the offer or the new promotion/raise. Don’t ask for too much time—more than 24 hours can be a red flag for the business. Ask for up to 1 day and be clear about when you will get back to your contact. 


“I want to take some time to review the offer and the total compensation package. I’ll get back to you by this time tomorrow with a clear answer.”

“I want to review the new responsibilities for the role and the new compensation package. I’ll get back to you by EOD tomorrow with a firm answer.”

4. Make the case for why your experience exceeds the current offer.

Summarize your experience and be clear about why your specific skill set exceeds the current offer, requiring a higher salary or total compensation. You can highlight how you are a more qualified candidate by reminding HR or the hiring manager about your years of experience, education, software experience/competency, and metrics for projects or results delivered.


“I know I’m more than qualified for this role based on my 7 years of experience, MBA, and the results I was able to deliver in my previous role.” 

“I know I can meet the requirements of this new promotion because of the results I delivered in the last 12 months, bringing in $X in revenue.”

5. Counteroffer with a higher salary or additional benefits. 

Be clear about the salary number you want the company to meet as you present your counteroffer. Bonus points if you can backup your number with verified compensation data. (Learn more about verified compensation data here.)


“Based on my experience and the skill set I bring to this role, I need the salary to be adjusted to $X.”

“After looking at the total compensation, with the additional responsibilities and the results I know I can deliver, I need the compensation to be adjusted to $X.”

6. Sign off with a positive note and a hard deadline. 

Always end the conversation—whether it’s on the phone, over email, or in person—in a positive way with a specific ask. A hard deadline can show that you are firm in your decision and want to start right away. 


“Again, thank you so much for the offer. If we can get the number to $X today, I can sign paperwork by the end of business.”

“I’m really looking forward to this new role. I’d love to accept this promotion at $X/year. If we can agree to this number, I’d love to start on these projects on Monday!”

Salary Negotiation Script Examples

Salary negotiation conversations are not one-size-fits-all. Because of this, we’ve provided salary negotiation script examples for the most popular scenarios: 

Counteroffer Salary Negotiation Script 

Most employers expect you to negotiate the first offer. In many cases, they plan for this negotiation by offering you a lower salary initially. It’s important that you familiarize yourself with industry salary standards for your role, how the company views compensation (do they pay at a certain percentile?), and your negotiation style. 

You can account for the business’s buffer in their salary offer by asking for 10 - 20% more than what you want to see in the final offer. Or, you can go with the best and final approach (the strategy we recommend). In this strategy, you share a specific number that you want to see in the second offer. 

Salary negotiation script for a counteroffer: 

“Hi, John! Thank you so much for the job offer. I am so excited about this role and I really enjoyed the interview process. It was so fun to meet everyone and get insights into why everyone loves working at (company name). I’d love to consider the job offer over the next 24 hours. I’ll get back to you by noon tomorrow with my answer.”

“Thank you for the time I had to review the compensation and total offer for this role. I’m really excited about the potential for this position and I know with my 10 years of experience, my MBA, and the results I delivered in my last role, I can bring quick wins and long-term success to (company name). Because of this, I’d love to see the base salary at $X. If we can get to this number by the end of the day, I can sign the paperwork. I’d love to get started as soon as possible!”

Asking for Other Benefits or Perks Negotiation Script

Negotiating a higher salary doesn’t always fit within the business’s budget. If this is the case for your scenario, be open to other negotiation areas—benefits, time off, or other perks. Consider asking for more time off if the vacation hours aren’t unlimited, work-from-home privileges, etc.

Negotiation script for additional benefits or perks: 

“Hi, Kerry! Thank you so much for this job offer for (role name). I am really looking forward to working with everyone on the team—I had so much fun meeting everyone during the interview process. I know the business doesn’t have much wiggle room on salary negotiation, but I’d like to walk through the options we have on other benefits.”

“Based on my years of experience, the results I delivered in my last two roles, and the wins I know I can bring to this role, I’d like to see a higher total compensation package. To reach this, I’d love to see 5 additional vacation days, 5% more in the annual bonus, and a 5% increase in options based on the current offer. If we can get these additional benefits added to the total comp, I can sign this offer today. I’d love to get started as soon as possible!”

Reviewing Other Offers Salary Negotiation Script 

If you’ve received multiple offers within a short amount of time—and you’ve been transparent that you’re currently interviewing at multiple companies—it can be appropriate to use another offer in your salary negotiation. 

Salary negotiation script for reviewing multiple offers: 

“Hi, Mary! I am so excited about this job offer—thank you so much for your time and offering me this role. I really enjoyed meeting everyone throughout the interview process. As you know, I have been interviewing at a few companies during this process and I’d love to take 24 hours to consider this offer. I’ll get back to you by noon tomorrow with my answer.”

“Thank you for the time I had to review the offer! Based on my 10 years of experience, my MBA, and the results I delivered in my last role, I know I can bring quick wins and long-term success to (company name). As we discussed, I’ve interviewed at multiple companies during this process. I received another offer yesterday as well, but I want to work for (company name) for $X. Can (company name) match this base salary? If so, I can sign paperwork today.“

Ask for a Raise or a Promotion Salary Negotiation Script 

Whether you’ve been offered a new promotion or it’s time to ask for a raise, using a salary negotiation script can help you get the compensation you deserve. In these scenarios, it’s critical that you exceed the goals that have already been set for your role, encourage consistent feedback (and incorporate that feedback), and highlight your accomplishments.

Salary negotiation script for a raise: 

“Thank you so much for this opportunity to talk about my salary in our annual review. I’d love to talk through my top wins this year to showcase how much value I’ve brought to the business. In the last 12 months I’ve helped bring in X leads and close X deals. Because of these accomplishments, I’d love to see my compensation match my contributions with my base salary moving to $X.”

Salary negotiation script for a raise: 

“I really appreciate the opportunity to talk about this promotion. I’ve reviewed the new requirements for the role and the goals you’ve set for the first 30, 60, and 90 days. I know that with my background and the work I’ve done already at (company name), I can drive fast results and bring real change to this role. Because of the additional responsibilities, I’d love to see a compensation offer that matches the new title and role at $X. If we can get to that number, I’d love to accept this new role and get started next week.”

Need more resources? Check out these links: 

How to Negotiate your Salary: The Definitive Guide

How to Get a Raise or Promotion in the Next 6 Months

How to Write a Salary Negotiation Email

How to Make Your Job Application Stand Out

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