Stating Salary History In Cover Letter

Sample Cover Letter With Salary History

Occasionally, an employer will ask you to include a salary history in your cover letter. A salary history (which is different from a salary requirement) includes information on what you have earned in past jobs.

Sometimes, a salary history in a cover letter can be stated as a sentence, such as “I currently earn in the mid-fifties.” A more detailed salary history might list your previous two or three jobs, and include the company, job title, and benefits package for each.

Generally, do not share your salary history in a cover letter. In most cases, if an employer asks for this information, you should follow the employer’s directions and provide it if you are in a location where it is legal for a company to ask. However, some cities and states prohibit employers from asking. In that case, you don't need to list it.

There are ways to share your salary history that keep you from being too specific. Read below for advice on how to share your salary history with an employer. Also see below for a sample cover letter with a salary history included.

Are Questions About Salary Legal?

Keep in mind that, in some locations, it is illegal for employers to ask you anything related to your salary. Therefore, check out your state or city laws before responding.

Read here for more information about what employers are legally allowed to ask you in terms of your former salary.

How to Share Your Salary History

Again, don’t mention your salary history unless asked to.

In your cover letter, you want to focus on why you are a good fit for the job, rather than talking about salary. You also don’t want to put yourself in a corner, salary-wise. If you say your current salary, it might be harder to negotiate for better compensation later on.

However, if an employer asks you to include a salary history, there are several options for providing information.

You could ignore the request, but employers want job candidates to follow directions. Not answering could lose you a job interview.

There are a few ways to include this information in your cover letter. One way is to include a sentence that states either a broad description of your salary (for example, “I currently earn in the mid-sixties.”) or a range (for example, “My current salary range is between $40,000 - $50,000”). You might also add that you are flexible in terms of salary.

You could also include a separate salary history page along with your cover letter. On the salary history page, you could include the past one, two, or three jobs you have held. List the jobs in reverse chronological order (with the most recent job at the top). For each job, list the company, job title, and salary (before taxes). You can list the salary as a range or a broad amount. Include any bonuses or additional compensation as well.

Sample Cover Letter With Salary History Listed

Your Name
Your Address
Your City, State, Zip Code
Your Phone Number
Your Email

Date

Contact Name
Title
Company Name
Address
City, State, Zip Code

Dear Contact Name:

I'm writing to express my interest in the Web Content Manager position listed on CareerBuilder.com.

I have experience building large, consumer-focused, health-based content sites. While much of my experience has been in the business world, I understand the social value of the non-profit sector and my business experience will be an asset to your organization.

My responsibilities at my current job have include the development and management of the site’s editorial voice and style, the editorial calendar, and the daily content programming and production of the website. In my current and past positions, I have worked closely with health care professionals and medical editors to help them provide the best possible information to a consumer audience of patients. In addition, I have helped physicians learn to utilize their medical content to write user-friendly, readily comprehensible text.

Experience has taught me how to build strong relationships with all departments at an organization.

I have the ability to work within a team as well as across teams. I work with web engineers to resolve technical issues and implement technical enhancements, work with the development department to implement design and functional enhancements, and monitor site statistics and conduct search engine optimization. I know my work experience would make me an ideal Web Content Manager at your company.

I am currently earning in the mid-fifties.

Thank you for your consideration. I look forward to hearing from you.

Best Regards,

Signature (hard copy letter)

FirstName LastName

Read More:How to Get a Better Offer | Salary Negotiation Tips for Millennials | Can Employers Ask for Copies of Your W2s?| How to Set a Salary Range

Cover Letter Example With Salary Requirements

When and How to Mention Compensation in a Cover Letter

Writing a cover letter can be difficult, especially when you are asked to include information that you think could affect your chances of getting an interview. Some employers ask applicants to include a salary requirement in a cover letter, which can feel awkward or uncomfortable. However, there are ways to include this information without hurting your chances of getting a job.

Here are tips on when and how to include a salary requirement in a cover letter, as well as an example of a cover letter that lists a salary requirement.

Also see below for more cover letter samples, and tips for emailing a cover letter and resume.

When to Include Salary Requirements in a Cover Letter

If a job application does not require you to include salary information (such as your salary history, a salary requirement, or a salary range), do not do so. If you request too high of a salary, the employer might not even look at your application. On the other hand, if you request too low of a salary, they might offer you less than you are worth. In some locations, employers cannot legally ask about your prior earnings.

However, if the job posting or application states that you must include a salary requirement, be sure to do so if you are not in a location where employers are prohibited from asking. It's important to follow directions and provide all the information the employer requests. Otherwise, you risk being tossed out of the application pool.

Options for Including Salary Requirements in a Cover Letter

If the employer does not give specific instructions on how to include salary requirements, you have a couple of options to consider.

Include a Salary Range
One way to include salary requirements in a cover letter is to list a salary range. This gives you and the employer some flexibility.

Make sure your salary range is realistic. Research what the position is worth by using salary surveys and salary calculators.

Salary Requirements are Negotiable
You can also state that your salary requirements are negotiable based on the position and the overall compensation package, including benefits.

State That You're Flexible
No matter what, make sure you emphasize that your salary requirements are flexible. This will help keep you in the running and also give you options when negotiating salary later on.

Cover Letter Example with a Salary Requirement / Range

Your Name
Your Address
Your City, State, Zip Code
Your Phone Number
Your Email

Hiring Manager
Company Name
Address
City, State, Zip Code

Dear Hiring Manager:

I'm writing to express my strong interest in the Web Design Specialist position listed on Craigslist.

I have experience designing consumer-focused health-based websites. While much of my experience has been in the business world, I understand the social value of the non-profit sector.

My responsibilities have included the design and development of the site's editorial voice and style, and the daily content programming and production of the website. I worked closely with health care professionals and medical editors to help them provide the best possible information to a consumer audience of patients and health care professionals.

Experience has taught me how to build strong relationships with all departments at an organization. I have the ability to work within a team as well as cross-team.

I can work with web engineers to resolve technical issues and implement technical enhancements, work with the development department to implement design and functional enhancements, and monitor site statistics and conduct search engine optimization.

My salary requirement is in the $70,000 - $80,000 range. However, my salary is negotiable based on the overall compensation package.

I look forward to hearing from you. Thank you for your consideration.

Signature (hard copy letter)

FirstName LastName

Sending an Email Cover Letter

If you're sending your cover letter via email, list your name and the job title in the subject line of the email message.

Include your contact information in your email signature, and don't list the employer contact information. Start your email message with the salutation.

More Sample Cover Letters
Cover letter samples and templates for a variety of career fields and employment levels, including entry-level, targeted and email cover letters for many different jobs.

More About Salary: Salary Negotiation Strategies | Salary Negotiation Tips | How to Answer Interview Questions About Your Salary Expectations

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