Get the Salary You Deserve

You’re offered a job. Everything’s in place. You have the skills and the work environment feels right. (If you’re not sure about that, read this.) But there’s one angst-producing detail yet to consider: compensation.

Your value to your employer is defined by a combination of experience, skills, and demand. To get the salary you deserve, you need to know how to price each of those elements and get ready for a salary negotiation.

If you go into the negotiation with a sound idea of what someone in your position should be earning, you’ll be well prepared to make an informed counter offer. To get the best deal, you need as much information as possible.

Good news! You can get the data you need from APA. Every other year the American Institute of Certified Planners, surveys APA members about their compensation. This year more than 9,000 professional planners responded to our scientific survey.

The detailed results — current and comprehensive information on planners’ compensation — are reported in the APA 2016 Salary Survey and available only to APA members. Results are anonymous, of course, but you’re sure to find yourself and your job (or the job you want) described in some combination of demographic, jurisdiction, and specialization data.

The report includes a salary calculator that takes into account position, years of experience, area of employment, and location (or desired location).

The report also cross-tabs pay by gender and, we’re happy to report, there’s virtually no difference nationally in salaries between men and women with less than 20 years of experience.

And as they have in the past, the results show that AICP-certified planners typically earn $16,000 per year more than non-certified planners. It pays to get certified. Check out the AICP eligibility requirements and find out if your experience qualifies.

Remember, pay is only a portion of overall compensation. Because you’ll spend much of your waking life at work, culture and relationships are just as important as salary. Also factor into your decision paid time off, insurance, and other compensation-related benefits; work-life balance; family-friendliness; and opportunities for career development and professional advancement. All are essential factors to consider as you get ready to take the next step in your professional path.

About the Author

Bobbie Albrecht is APA's manager of career services.

Top image: Roll of cash photo by Flickr user 401(K) 2012 (CC BY-SA 2.0).

July 19, 2016

By Bobbie Albrecht