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Is salary.com et al full of shit?

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  • Is salary.com et al full of shit?

    It's really difficult to price ones ability when offers come in way bellow whatever average there is for the amount of experience anyone seems to have. I'm trying to figure out a good rate is and if any of the information I find is useful for bargaining purposes. All of a sudden an article within a prominent newspaper in the city I'm looking for the job is 20k less than whatever salary.com and it's competitors state. What gives? How does one even remotely price accordingly as a freelancer?
    In life there are a lot of grey areas; not in the conception phase of logo design.

    When a person asks you to do work for nothing in return, they are saying to your face, "You're worthless but useful to me."

    Shall is a direct command whereas the verb will is a prophecy of the future.

    http://www.behance.net/tmt

  • #2
    What are your education and skill levels?

    Remember the salaries listed at salaries.com and even aiga.org are based on respondents to surveys. Quite often you will find with surveys that people making low wages don't bother answering the survey. The other thing you have to remember is the salaries given are Medians. In a lot of cases, if the number of respondents in a given market is low, it only takes one or two highly skilled, highly paid individuals to skew the results.

    With freelancing, your salary is only part of the equation. Your salary may be high median, say $55K but you still have to pay taxes and pay the rent. As a freelancer you would have to add your overhead to your expected salary so you have to charge even more than your salary rate to get there. This is yet another reason I do not ever recommend a student go out freelancing. Usually it takes 5 to 10 years to get to the skill level and to have the contacts where you can command a decent salary on top of your overhead.

    It's also a sign that the economy is not growing as well as everyone, not just designers, seems to be saying if there is no competition for employees and wages are flat. Design is especially nasty because the market is far too over-saturated. There is no reason for an employer to offer higher wages because someone always takes the job for peanuts.
    Last edited by PrintDriver; 10-31-2014, 08:51 PM.

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    • #3
      I was pretty much going to write what PrintDriver already wrote, so I'll just agree with him instead.

      In addition, there's also a tendency for some people to inflate things a bit when they're asked how much they make. I have nothing to back it up other than personal anecdotes from hiring people and on being employed myself at various places, but my best guess is that the figures for both salaries.com and AIGA are a good 20 to 30 percent higher than what one might typically expect to make.

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      • #4
        Around 8 years, and three in IT (12 unprofessional). Certification in IT and a Bachelors of Arts. To better understand my prompt, it's just an inquisitive curiosity as to why, the rate isn't going to mean much being spoken of here compared to the real world figure that someone offers. It's known that we are in a buyers market, it's a saturated market— not so much for specialized professionals. I have shifted into programing/development from design and it's a little less competition and in high demand. On a professional scale, it lops off a huge portion of what is considered "competition" since most businesses cannot afford careless spending to "competitors", so reconsideration of what is competitive would be nice to know truly.
        In life there are a lot of grey areas; not in the conception phase of logo design.

        When a person asks you to do work for nothing in return, they are saying to your face, "You're worthless but useful to me."

        Shall is a direct command whereas the verb will is a prophecy of the future.

        http://www.behance.net/tmt

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        • #5
          What you are offered is affected hugely by your local market. For instance, you'll get offered more in a city than in a rural area for the same type job; if there are a lot of local people with your skills you'll be offered less. Any online salary guessing site is just a conglomerate. It's meant to give you a rough idea of what you can expect, but it may be way out of line for the salaries in your area.
          No cell phone, no Facebook, no iAnything. Am I missing something?

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          • #6
            Another thing to remember when comparing with an average salary is that 50% of the people surveyed for that average made less than that number.
            Design is not decoration.

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            • #7
              After more research it appears that the bureau of labor statistics has the most accurate data to go by. So if anyone ever wonders how they ought to be price in the market, it's best to head there for information.
              In life there are a lot of grey areas; not in the conception phase of logo design.

              When a person asks you to do work for nothing in return, they are saying to your face, "You're worthless but useful to me."

              Shall is a direct command whereas the verb will is a prophecy of the future.

              http://www.behance.net/tmt

              Comment


              • ISitude
                ISitude commented
                Editing a comment
                Is there an infographic for that

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