I already have an offer from a well-established company (33 years old) in the Bay Area but I think I did not negotiate properly for the salary (I later checked online and I found the average salary for this position is way higher in that company although my current offered salary is not bad). I had another onsite interview yesterday from a company (20 years old) who have opened their new office in Phoenix and I am expecting a result by the end of the week. If I get an offer from the second company I just interviewed, which of the two companies I negotiate with for the salary? I prefer my first company since it’s in the bay area and I will have lots of opportunities as opposed to Phoenix (if that is true?).

My second question is I just a call for the introductory conversation with one of the companies I want to work with. Should I tell them I already have an offer but I am interested in working with them? Would that work in my favor?

Please note there are still 20 days in my joining date for my first company.
I know the situation is a bit complex but just looking for some insights/suggestions.
Thank you.

The salaries you found online are what people received after they negotiated their offers! And you mentioned you had not negotiated yet, so how did you “not negotiate properly”?

In terms of which company to negotiate with: which company do you want to work for? Which city do you want to live in? If you’re not sure, and you do get an offer with the company in Phoenix, then why not tell each company about the other offer, and begin to negotiate. With the Bay Area company, you could mention you did some research, and saw that the initial offer was lower than what you expected based on somebody with your experience and skills. Make sure that each company knows you’re excited to work for them, but that you need more information to compare the two positions (remember to consider things beyond salary, like benefits).

Remember, your job search doesn’t end until you show up for work on your first day. That intro call you just had? They need to know you are actively searching and interviewing with other companies. You can let them know that if they are interested in you, they will need to move fast (and make sure they know you are interested in them). Personally, I would say I had completed some mid to late-stage interviews, but I wouldn’t say I had offers already. Years ago I made the mistake of saying I’d received an offer, and that was the last time I ever heard from the other employer again. They may assume you have accepted the offer you received, and not waste their time.

Congrats on the offer, by the way!

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Hey Alysa, that’s very insightful. I had got a call from the HR and she told me on the phone that I was selected and wanted a verbal confirmation of the same, which I did not expect. I knew from my friends what’s the minimum salary I should get in the Bay area and I demanded and confirmed the same. But that turned out to be an entry level salary but mine was senior level position. You are right, I should keep looking for opportunities until I join any company. I have this introductory call tomorrow. Thank you for writing about your experience. That helps a lot!!

Demanding verbal acceptance of an offer is pushy and rude! Personally, I would tell them I needed to review written documents before I could agree to anything. If they are giving you a low salary as well, that’s not a good way to start a career with them! You want to make sure the company you’re joining is a good fit for you, so make sure to take the culture into consideration, and that includes their hiring practices.

My last job seemed great during the interviews, and then when the offer came, they gave me 24 hours to accept it, the salary was so low I wouldn’t have accepted it coming out of undergrad (I was finishing a graduate degree but was in a crisis situation where I needed a job ASAP), they wouldn’t negotiate, and I was given a hiring bonus… which I would have to pay back if I left the company before a year was up. Huge red flags that signaled bigger problems deeper within the company which came to light after a few years.

It’s possible the company that gave you the offer is fine, and their hiring practices are just iffy, but make sure to weigh your options carefully and work with your advisor to negotiate effectively!

My case is the same as you have described but my salary is not bad. It’s just low considering the position I interviewed for, which I felt after looking at the salary of the employees in Glassdoor. But, anyway, I plan to send them an email asking for an increase in salary as today is my last date to accept the offer. I have a few other decisions pending as well. I will make my final decision after I have got replies from all of them.