We ran a short survey to ask you about salary and salary negotiations. Here we reveal our key findings. And, if you’re a Mind the Product member, you can also access our in-depth article: ‘A Guide to Salaries – Know Your worth and How to Ask for It‘.
Don’t have the time to read through all the results below? No problem, here are the headlines:
- 226 people (65% male, 35% female) across 37 countries completed our survey
- 64% of these people are Product Managers (other roles range from Director and Product Owner to VP Product and Chief Product Officer)
- The majority of these people believe that they are being paid less than the market rate or do not know what the market rate is for their role
- The majority of these people feel that there is not a clear process around salary reviews within their organisation
- In general, whether people feel confident about negotiating is fairly even split – 59% do, 40% do not)
- Over half have tried to negotiate their salary, more than half of whom were successful
- Of our respondents, the men tend to feel more confident about salary negotiations and have more success than the women when they do
Read on for a more detailed breakdown of our results.
We asked each respondent if they feel they are currently paid the market rate for their role:
- 42% answered ‘no, I believe I should be paid more’
- 31% answered ‘yes’
- 19% answered ‘I don’t know what the market rate is’
- 6% answered ‘I believe I’m paid more than the market rate’
The Salary Review Process
Asked if their current company has a clear process around salary reviews, 59% said no and 40% answered yes. For 87% of those who said the process is clear, that process involves an annual salary review.
We asked respondents if they’d feel confident about negotiating their salary with their manager:
- 59% said yes
- 40% said no
We then asked if they had ever tried to negotiate their salary:
- 65% said yes
- 34% said no
Of those who said they had tried, 68% said they were successful and cited a variety of reasons for their success including:
- Taking the opportunity to negotiate when switching roles or departments
- Documenting their results and showing the misalignment of their salary with the market rates
- Providing their employer with clear examples of how they provide value above their grade or expectations
Of those who were unsuccessful, the main reason related to company budget or financial restrictions, followed by company policy.
Of those who said they’d never tried to negotiate their salary, the main reasons were:
- Simply not feeling the need to
- Believing there was no option to
- Not knowing how to go about it
What impacts the negotiation?
We asked respondents questions to determine what they think impacts the negotiation process and success rates. Here we were looking to see if we could spot any trends. We were interested in factors such as:
Location: We asked those who’d worked in product roles in different countries if, in their opinion, the work culture in those countries affects the process of salary negotiation. 57% told us that it made no difference at all while 37% felt it did. And, of those who had experienced noticeably different processes from country to country, the reasons switched between attitudes towards culture, race and gender.
Gender: Of the people who completed our survey, more men (69%) said they would feel confident about negotiating their salary with their manager, than women (44% ). But, despite this, more women than men said they have previously negotiated their salary (69% to 66%).
Of the men and women who told us they tried to negotiate:
- 73% of men were successful
- 60% of women were successful
Experience: A few days after our survey went live, one respondent told us that they felt experience should be factored in because it plays a big part in salary and salary negotiation. We thought this was a great suggestion and, to see if they were right, we added it. This meant that 20 people weren’t able to answer this particular question but, with the results of the 206 that did, we can confirm that there was nothing dramatic to report.
In general, the only finding was that those who had fewer years of experience, on average, feel they are being paid the market rate compared to those who don’t, those who don’t know the market rate or those who feel they’re paid more than the market rate.
What did we learn?
On analysing the results of our survey we’ve learned that, in general, most people lack confidence and understanding when it comes to what they should or could be paid for their role. In addition, they’re not entirely sure how to approach the subject of salary or even if they can.
Many people in product roles feel they’re not being paid the market rate but simply don’t know what to do about it. And, on reading some of the open comments, it’s clear that the definition of ‘product management roles’ differs from place to place and organisation to organisation. What’s more, people feel the product role isn’t valued or understood enough to ensure that the people doing the job are getting the salaries they deserve.
Sign up to Mind the Product membership to access our ‘A Guide to Salaries – Know Your Worth and how to Ask for It‘ in which you’ll discover insights and advice on:
- Navigating the job market
- Assessing your worth
- The salary review process
- Negotiation skills
- The current hiring landscape