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OHN

join:2003-02-05
Appleton, WI
kudos:1

Salary Research for Negotiation

Hello everyone,

I am hoping to get some guidance on how to research salary information in order to negotiate compensation. First, let me say that I have already googled and founds lots of good stuff. I am already referencing sites like www.salary.com , www.indeed.com , www.salaryexpert.com , www.bls.gov among others. Here is where I need your help or input.

In my current job, I wear numerous hats. I am a jack-of-all-trades if you will. I manage a call center for a bank (Banker/Techie), but my primary duties and responsibilities relate to technology. I work with internal tech support, telecommunications, and networking, programing, implementations and computer operations. Some of my responsibilities include functions of a business systems analyst, project manager, and workforce management. Any tech in the call center, I am in charge of researching, administering, and troubleshooting to a certain extent. In addition, I indirectly manage all levels of call center staff, which are about 100 employees. I also manage a specialized team that answers banking inquiries and provides technical support. My current title is Technical Services Manager. The problem is I cannot find much information on this specific title. What I do find, only covers a portion of what I do or is more definitive like managing a full on IT Department. If possible, I would like to do apples to apples comparison.

Is anyone else in a similar position that can provide insight? Any direction you can provide is greatly appreciated.


Oedipus

join:2005-05-09
kudos:1

What do you make now?


OHN

join:2003-02-05
Appleton, WI
kudos:1

1 edit

I make about $10,000 less than the median based on my research.

Part of the reason for my negotiation relates to the recent promotion of another manager to a level higher than me although their responsibilities managerial wise are about the same but has none of the technical side.


Oedipus

join:2005-05-09
kudos:1

said by OHN:

I make about $10,000 less than the median based on my research.

What's the basis for that if you can't find a title that covers everything you do? It might save you some trouble if you just tell us what you make and we can probably help you determine if it's even worth discussing with your superiors.

FWIW, you're not going to find an apples to apples comparison, here. IT positions beyond basic helpdesk/tech duties do not work like that.

OHN

join:2003-02-05
Appleton, WI
kudos:1

3 edits

Currently it is 80k, which appears to be a little below the median if I was only a call center manager. When comparing to a Help Desk Manager, the difference is huge.



Nightfall
My Goal Is To Deny Yours
Premium,MVM
join:2001-08-03
Grand Rapids, MI
Reviews:
·ooma
·Comcast
·Callcentric
·Site5.com

I am assuming you are living in Los Angeles, CA?

What certifications do you have?
What is your level of education?
How long have you been in the industry?

These three questions also drive salary as well.
--
My domain - Nightfall.net


OHN

join:2003-02-05
Appleton, WI
kudos:1

1 edit

No certifications. Highest level is high school. I have on the job training. I have been doing this specific function for 10 years (at this company. I have about 15+ years in tech) now (Banking 17+ years). Yes, I live in Los Angeles.

Again, keep in mind, I have a peer in my same area that does the same managerial functions as me (managing call center), minus the technical area and is of a higher level/pay. I can do what she can do, but she cannot do what I do. Ironically, it almost looks like having the technical expertise hurts me.


Oedipus

join:2005-05-09
kudos:1
reply to OHN

Does your peer have a college education and/or relevant certifications? What is their tenure in your industry?



AVD
Respice, Adspice, Prospice
Premium
join:2003-02-06
Onion, NJ
kudos:1
reply to OHN

how easily can you be replaced?



Nightfall
My Goal Is To Deny Yours
Premium,MVM
join:2001-08-03
Grand Rapids, MI
Reviews:
·ooma
·Comcast
·Callcentric
·Site5.com
reply to OHN

said by OHN:

No certifications. Highest level is high school. I have on the job training. I have been doing this specific function for 10 years now (Banking 17+ years). Yes, I live in Los Angeles.

Again, keep in mind, I have a peer in my same area that does the same managerial functions as me (managing call center), minus the technical area and is of a higher level/pay. I can do what she can do, but she cannot do what I do. Ironically, it almost looks like having the technical expertise hurts me.

Actually, what hurts you the worst is that you have no certs and no degree.

What does your peer have in terms of a degree or certifications? What about your peer's experience level?

I know these questions have been asked already, but I thought I would mention them again because they are important. If your peer has a college degree or certifications along with the same experience level you have, then that would answer the pay disparity.
--
My domain - Nightfall.net

OHN

join:2003-02-05
Appleton, WI
kudos:1

4 edits
reply to AVD

Not very easily, I have many departments that come to me for assistance. I am the subject matter expert in all call center technology including phone systems. In some situations, even department that own a specific area like Telecommunications come to me for help. I do have my hand or nose, if you will, in lots of different areas. Many different areas depend on my “expertise”.

I think the problem is that my direct manager may not have a complete understanding of my contribution. While they may appreciate it, I don’t think they understand at what level and capacity. Since he has been in the call center, I have always been around. He has no real idea of the headaches you have running a call center when you don’t have technical people i.e. phone systems going down, managing call routing, workforce management, technical support, changes to IVR or auto attendant, ACD. Even though it has been mentioned many times by others that many technology projects could not have been completed if I was not there. For the ones that could, they would have not gone as smoothly and likely taken longer to implement.

Another thing that corroborates that there is a lack of understanding is the demand that I train a very low-level agent to perform some of these complex and business critical tasks (some of which we request from consultants normally). They wanted me to “just train” an agent to do it. Something like asking a tier 1 agent (barely knows tech) to modify VDNs, vectors, prompting and distribution for calls even though our own Telecom department is hesitant to make these changes at times.


OHN

join:2003-02-05
Appleton, WI
kudos:1

1 edit
reply to Nightfall

They dont have any degrees. Also, their focus is banking only while mine is banking and all the hats I wear technology wise. For the last 10 years I have been here, this person has been below me 5 years. It was not until recently they were promoted and to a level which is higher than mine. Their title is simply called Center Manager.



hortnut
Huh?

join:2005-09-25
PNW
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Comcast
reply to OHN

Just a thought from what you just posted, why not document just what you do. What is the job description? Things change over time.

Redo a Resume/CV based on what you are actually doing. I think it would be a little bold to redo a job description, though.

Suggested that to a friend years ago and he supplemented it with graphs and other documentation. Received a decent raise. Those in upper management did not even know all that he was doing.


OHN

join:2003-02-05
Appleton, WI
kudos:1

2 edits

Thanks, that is what I am actually doing. I have a presentation almost ready to go. It talks about my job description, actual responsibilities and provides comparison with positions using market data as well as internal salary structure. I have graphs, metrics and references to various reputable sites. Using various similar positions as comparison, it shows I am underpaid by $15,000 on average.

I met with my boss and mentioned I would be working on this. He appeared to be receptive and agreed that a presentation would be a good idea. I would present it to him and my bosss boss. One thing though, he mentioned giving me more responsibilities in order to justify it. I first said I was open to it as I am a team player, however, as I write things down I see I have been doing so much already. The whole point was to compensate me accordingly for my current work. If you add more stuff to my plate in order to justify the increase, we are back at square one. If I feel I am not compensated accordingly with current responsibilities and pay, how would giving me even more responsibilities to justify an increase address this?



Nightfall
My Goal Is To Deny Yours
Premium,MVM
join:2001-08-03
Grand Rapids, MI
Reviews:
·ooma
·Comcast
·Callcentric
·Site5.com

said by OHN:

Thanks, that is what I am actually doing. I have a presentation almost ready to go. It talks about my job description, actual responsibilities and provides comparison with positions using market data as well as internal salary structure. I have graphs, metrics and references to various reputable sites. Using various similar positions as comparison, it shows I am underpaid by $15,000 on average.

I met with my boss and mentioned I would be working on this. He appeared to be receptive and agreed that a presentation would be a good idea. I would present it to him and my bosss boss. One thing though, he mentioned giving me more responsibilities in order to justify it. I first said I was open to it as I am a team player, however, as I write things down I see I have been doing so much already. The whole point was to compensate me accordingly for my current work. If you add more stuff to my plate in order to justify the increase, we are back at square one. If I feel I am not compensated accordingly with current responsibilities and pay, how would giving me even more responsibilities to justify an increase address this?

I believe this is what going through the exercise of documenting your duties will accomplish. If you give them a list of everything you are doing, it may open their minds a bit more. Right now, they are just assuming that giving you more responsibility would be the way to getting a bigger paycheck. Maybe you do enough as it is already. The key is to let them know everything you do and make the presentation.
--
My domain - Nightfall.net


Kilroy
Premium,MVM
join:2002-11-21
Saint Paul, MN
reply to OHN

said by OHN:

No certifications. Highest level is high school. I have on the job training.

I'm going to tell you what you don't want to hear. The lack of a college degree is why you are paid less. This is the same issue I have.

The company I work for requires a degree for the position I was working as a contractor. When they decided to hire me and found out I didn't have a degree (or more accurately no college eduction) I was hired in a lower position. As my brother put it, they would rather have a two year degree rather than 15 years of experience.

I have since started college and was promoted to the position as I am working on a degree. I'm not rushing to get it, one class a semester, but it is what they want.
--
“Progress isn't made by early risers. It's made by lazy men trying to find easier ways to do something.” ¯ Robert A. Heinlein


Nightfall
My Goal Is To Deny Yours
Premium,MVM
join:2001-08-03
Grand Rapids, MI
Reviews:
·ooma
·Comcast
·Callcentric
·Site5.com

This would make sense if his peer had a college degree and certs. According to the OP, his peer doesn't have those things. You are right though. I have seen many talented people who are not paid as much if you don't have the sheepskin or the certifications to backup your knowledge. I know a very talented network and support engineer who hasn't made over 50k in his career because he has no certs or degree and with 10 years of experience. These days, its just too easy to find someone with 10 years of experience with a degree and certs and pay them more.
--
My domain - Nightfall.net



Modus
I hate smartassery on forums
Premium
join:2005-05-02
us

1 edit

said by Nightfall:

These days, its just too easy to find someone with 10 years of experience with a degree and certs and pay them more.

I tell you for a fact that this doesn't apply where i am and may be the same in other areas
--
Think Ahead. Learn More. Solve Now!

OHN

join:2003-02-05
Appleton, WI
kudos:1
reply to Nightfall

I think you are 100% correct. Whenever something is thrown at me, I always say yes and get the job done. I do not think they appreciate what I do. I have started writing down everything. In all honesty, some stuff I was thinking of skipping because I thought, well it is not a big deal but once I started analyzing what I do and what it entails, it did end up being a big deal. It is because of what I do that we rely so little on other departments like Server Amins, Telecommunications and ecommerce. In addition, our reliance on consultants has greatly minimized when it comes to tech in the call center.

As far as the person thinking the lack of college or certifications may be the issue, I do not believe so. The person that was promoted has neither college nor certifications. If we were to look at banking experience alone, we have about the same (I have 17+ years). When it comes to managing the call center, we also have similar responsibilities. Based on these similarities alone, we should be on the same level. Again, I have the same if not more, experience as a banker so I can do his job but earn a little less than he earns.

With that said, I then have the Technical responsibilities and knowledge (15+ years) that as you all know, require wearing multiple hats. This is something that this person cannot do or learn. After all, we are all hardcore geeks that eat, sleep and dream this stuff . When you account for that, it even substantiates me having a higher level let alone an equal one.

Summary: If you were to consider me only a call center manager, I am underpaid and at a lower salary level then I should be.

When you account for what I bring to the table technology wise, I am $15,000 underpaid and should even be a higher level than the other person.



Nightfall
My Goal Is To Deny Yours
Premium,MVM
join:2001-08-03
Grand Rapids, MI
Reviews:
·ooma
·Comcast
·Callcentric
·Site5.com
reply to Modus

said by Modus:

said by Nightfall:

These days, its just too easy to find someone with 10 years of experience with a degree and certs and pay them more.

I tell you for a fact that this doesn't apply where i am and may be the same in other areas

Depends on your location I guess. In most major cities, there are a lot of talented IT people out there. I know when we were looking for a Network Admin, we got hit with a bunch of resumes. The top 3 candidates selected all had 5+ years experience, a 4 year degree in IT, and certifications ranging from MCP, CCNA, and MCITP. We easily bypassed people with the same experience with no degree or no certs.
--
My domain - Nightfall.net


Nightfall
My Goal Is To Deny Yours
Premium,MVM
join:2001-08-03
Grand Rapids, MI
Reviews:
·ooma
·Comcast
·Callcentric
·Site5.com
reply to OHN

said by OHN:

I think you are 100% correct. Whenever something is thrown at me, I always say yes and get the job done. I do not think they appreciate what I do. I have started writing down everything. In all honesty, some stuff I was thinking of skipping because I thought, well it is not a big deal but once I started analyzing what I do and what it entails, it did end up being a big deal. It is because of what I do that we rely so little on other departments like Server Amins, Telecommunications and ecommerce. In addition, our reliance on consultants has greatly minimized when it comes to tech in the call center.

As far as the person thinking the lack of college or certifications may be the issue, I do not believe so. The person that was promoted has neither college nor certifications. If we were to look at banking experience alone, we have about the same (I have 17+ years). When it comes to managing the call center, we also have similar responsibilities. Based on these similarities alone, we should be on the same level. Again, I have the same if not more, experience as a banker so I can do his job but earn a little less than he earns.

With that said, I then have the Technical responsibilities and knowledge (15+ years) that as you all know, require wearing multiple hats. This is something that this person cannot do or learn. After all, we are all hardcore geeks that eat, sleep and dream this stuff . When you account for that, it even substantiates me having a higher level let alone an equal one.

Summary: If you were to consider me only a call center manager, I am underpaid and at a lower salary level then I should be.

When you account for what I bring to the table technology wise, I am $15,000 underpaid and should even be a higher level than the other person.

Sounds like you have a plan and it also sounds like your boss is receptive to the idea as well. That alone is half the battle. Now all you need to do is to put together a solid argument as to why you should be paid more. From the way it sounds, you are on track.

Good luck!
--
My domain - Nightfall.net


Modus
I hate smartassery on forums
Premium
join:2005-05-02
us
reply to Nightfall

said by Nightfall:

said by Modus:

said by Nightfall:

These days, its just too easy to find someone with 10 years of experience with a degree and certs and pay them more.

I tell you for a fact that this doesn't apply where i am and may be the same in other areas

Depends on your location I guess. In most major cities, there are a lot of talented IT people out there. I know when we were looking for a Network Admin, we got hit with a bunch of resumes. The top 3 candidates selected all had 5+ years experience, a 4 year degree in IT, and certifications ranging from MCP, CCNA, and MCITP. We easily bypassed people with the same experience with no degree or no certs.

I'm in a major city and recently just went through the same thing but i found that in our case those resumes looked great but once those people were bought in for interviews the knowledge level didn't match what was on the resume.
--
Think Ahead. Learn More. Solve Now!


Modus
I hate smartassery on forums
Premium
join:2005-05-02
us
reply to OHN

said by OHN:

I think you are 100% correct. Whenever something is thrown at me, I always say yes and get the job done. I do not think they appreciate what I do. I have started writing down everything. In all honesty, some stuff I was thinking of skipping because I thought, well it is not a big deal but once I started analyzing what I do and what it entails, it did end up being a big deal. It is because of what I do that we rely so little on other departments like Server Amins, Telecommunications and ecommerce. In addition, our reliance on consultants has greatly minimized when it comes to tech in the call center.

As far as the person thinking the lack of college or certifications may be the issue, I do not believe so. The person that was promoted has neither college nor certifications. If we were to look at banking experience alone, we have about the same (I have 17+ years). When it comes to managing the call center, we also have similar responsibilities. Based on these similarities alone, we should be on the same level. Again, I have the same if not more, experience as a banker so I can do his job but earn a little less than he earns.

With that said, I then have the Technical responsibilities and knowledge (15+ years) that as you all know, require wearing multiple hats. This is something that this person cannot do or learn. After all, we are all hardcore geeks that eat, sleep and dream this stuff . When you account for that, it even substantiates me having a higher level let alone an equal one.

Summary: If you were to consider me only a call center manager, I am underpaid and at a lower salary level then I should be.

When you account for what I bring to the table technology wise, I am $15,000 underpaid and should even be a higher level than the other person.

Good luck with this...hopefully they get a true understanding of the value you bring to them.
--
Think Ahead. Learn More. Solve Now!


AVD
Respice, Adspice, Prospice
Premium
join:2003-02-06
Onion, NJ
kudos:1
reply to Nightfall

said by Nightfall:

Now all you need to do is to put together a solid argument as to why you should be paid more. From the way it sounds, you are on track.

Good luck!

+1
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OHN

join:2003-02-05
Appleton, WI
kudos:1
reply to Nightfall

With all do respect, I have worked on many occasions with people that have these certificates and have come to found out it does not necessarily indicate they know what they are doing. I do however recognize it would not hurt me to get them. That may be something for me to shoot for in the future.


OHN

join:2003-02-05
Appleton, WI
kudos:1
reply to Nightfall

Thank you so much. I appreciate your feedback. Lets see how it goes. If it does not work out, then I can say I at least tried rather than just leaving. I have already received offers from other employers. The pay would be about the same but my work would be focused i.e. managing workforce (wfm) or project management instead of "jack of all trades".


Oedipus

join:2005-05-09
kudos:1
reply to OHN

said by OHN:

With all do respect, I have worked on many occasions with people that have these certificates and have come to found out it does not necessarily indicate they know what they are doing. I do however recognize it would not hurt me to get them. That may be something for me to shoot for in the future.

It matters to the hiring people. That's the only reason why a lot of IT people have any certifications at all.

OHN

join:2003-02-05
Appleton, WI
kudos:1

I agree with you. That is how it is in general. My point though is that if someone is afforded the opportunity and gains the real world experiance, that does account for something. In my case I am confident it is not related to the lack of certifications. It is more due to lack of understanding of my manager. I will make it one of my goals to obtain the certifications at least. Having them and real world experiance should make me an even stronger candidate.



Wily_One
Premium
join:2002-11-24
San Jose, CA
Reviews:
·AT&T U-Verse

In the real world things like hiring and salary increase decisions do not depend solely on "hard" attributes like qualifications and experience; there is also the "soft" traits such as likeability, personality, etc. Could be your management just likes her more than you. Could be she is more sociable, "shmoozing" with the uppers and thus getting noticed more, which leads to a more favorable impression, and so on.

As is often the case, your contributions on the tech side prevent problems from reaching upper management, if they are even noticed at all. Your work is thus under their radar. This is a potential pitfall in organizations that do not know how much a good tech saves them. They can't appreciate what they are not aware of.



Modus
I hate smartassery on forums
Premium
join:2005-05-02
us

said by Wily_One:

In the real world things like hiring and salary increase decisions do not depend solely on "hard" attributes like qualifications and experience; there is also the "soft" traits such as likeability, personality, etc. Could be your management just likes her more than you. Could be she is more sociable, "shmoozing" with the uppers and thus getting noticed more, which leads to a more favorable impression, and so on.

+1 this something that never gets mentioned but behind closed doors it comes during the conversation. We had to fill a opening for finance director and one of the candidates was the assistant finance director, long story short she didn't get the job because the lack of soft skills.
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Think Ahead. Learn More. Solve Now!