One of the first rules in negotiating salary is to know what’s fair and competitive for your field. Even with that in mind, you may be paid more or less, depending on where you live. According to a study conducted by management consultants Abbott, Langer & Associates, there are disparities in white collar, technical and blue-collar jobs.
For example, if you’re a receptionist, you’ll fare best in the New York and New Jersey metropolitan area, making 29 percent more than the national average. Go to Butler county Missouri, you’ll be 39 percent below the national average. Drafters get 38 percent above the national average in New York City; 22 percent below the average in Lexington, Kentucky.
Your pay can also vary for an equivalent job in the same company, depending on where you’re located. Another survey conducted by consultants William M. Mercer, Inc. showed that a middle management or technical position might pay $50,000 in Milwaukee or Minneapolis. The same job in San Jose, California, will pay $59,700.
To see how you compare, check out the Bureau of Labor Statistics at http://www.bls.gov/blswage.htm.