Here’s a useful way to think about market value for your skillset and experience: What salary could you expect if you were to go do your job for another company in your industry and geographic area, or if your company were to rehire you as though you had never worked there? That’s the market value of your skillset and experience in your industry.

Estimating your market value is both an art and a science. You start by gathering as many data points as you can to get a sense of how others in your industry are compensated for doing jobs similar to yours. From those data points, you can estimate the average market value for your job in your industry. Then consider how you stack up relative to the average person with your skillset and experience to determine the market value for your particular combination of skills and experience in your industry.

In short, you’ll find a broad average salary for your job in your industry. Then you adjust that average to compensate for your particular skillset and experience.

Determining the market value for your skillset and experience

I recommend three primary ways of determining your market value. Some of these may yield more useful information than others. Your goal is simply to gather as much information as you can to estimate your market value.

  1. Online research
  2. Inter-company research
  3. Intra-company research

With those three types of data, you can start with a broad look at the market value of your skillset and experience in your industry as a whole, then narrow that estimate for your geographic region, and narrow it again for a particular company. That’s your estimated market value for your skillset and experience at the particular company you’re evaluating.

Start by estimating the market value for your skillset and experience in your industry.

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