How much money will I make this year? Will I be able to pay all my bills? What about health insurance and retirement? You will need to think carefully about several different factors when researching salary information.
In this module, you'll learn about the importance of salary research. We'll also talk about different resources you can use to find salary information, calculate your take-home pay, or determine your market value.
Why research salary information?
Without a clear understanding of the kind of salary you should expect from a career, you might find yourself pursuing a position that can't support your financial needs. In addition to basic salary information, you will also need to research the benefits associated with different careers, such as health insurance, retirement, and vacation time. Sometimes a competitive benefits package can be more valuable than a higher salary.
Even if you think you already know what to expect, consider that the global economic recession has seriously impacted salaries in almost every industry. Having the latest information can make a significant difference as you begin thinking about possible career paths.
Answering some of the questions below will help you to think about the type of information you need to gather as you begin researching different salaries:
- What kind of salary will I need to support my financial needs?
- What are the average and entry-level salaries for positions in the field?
- What about benefits, such as health care, retirement, and vacation?
- Are there educational costs to consider, such as tuition or student loans?
- Are there associated costs with my career choice, such as transportation, parking, or union dues?
- Will I need to relocate for a new career? What would that cost?
If you need additional help with assessing your financial needs, including how to plan a budget or manage your money, visit our Money Basics topic.