A bigger brand or a higher salary – dilemma which always comes up in the mind of a fresher during the placement drives. You’ve perfected your HR questions and technical knowledge and are ready for your upcoming interviews. However, would you go after a big-name job for the sake of your long-term prospects? Or apply for a job where you’ll be able to make more money?
For a fresher today, cost-to-company (CTC) and profile designation are the two key measures to analyze their return on investment (RoI). Before heading into a decision of what to choose from the two, you need to understand some pros and cons of each option.
YOUR DREAM BRAND
When you see companies like Google, Apple, Microsoft- having a cult following- hiring for positions, candidates often say YES to their offers. Such brands are allured by any fresher. So much so that, most are willing to work for less in return of getting a top brand name under their resumes.
You may choose to focus your career approach on specific type of companies and appear for select processes. Based on aspirations and self analysis you shortlist your dream reputed brands to work for. Also, you are well aware of how you need to prepare and what skills you need to hone to convert these opportunities.
Fast Company points out that working for a big brand can be pretty beneficial, even if the monetary perks aren’t there. The rewards in long-term benefits solidify your future job prospects. You observe a boost in prestige and identity while working for a loved brand. Also, it could send signals about your quality- these brands selected you for a certain reason, right? The experience gained and improvement of your personal brand could lead to a pay boost the next time you change jobs.
Top firms know they don’t need to give more money if most people are going to accept their offer anyway. As a fresher, you may make less money at the beginning. But the incremental growth is highly significant over the years with bonuses attached.
This approach comes with a few downsides of their own. By choosing only a specific set of brands , you might be limiting your options. So you’re in for some troubles if you don’t have a backup. You might find yourself in your dream company but you could also be doing that at the cost of an unsuitable job profile.
On the contrary, in the search of an ideal mix of job profile and dream company, you might land in a bad brand. Being a fresher, working in a struggling firm can repel gains for you. No amount of money can entice workers to join a firm stuck in financial or PR struggles.
It’s not easy to give up the perks, stability and clarity of role progression offered by many big brands. You find it hard to leave, even if it’s time to move on. If you do take a role at a big company, be sure of your goals for your next career transition.
YOUR DREAM SALARY
Being a fresher, while starting out your career- peer pressure is high. For some of us, how much we earn is important in terms of social standing among peers. Not surprisingly, young executives switch jobs for as little as 10% and bargain hard for salary hikes. As in the short run, it matters for your financial well-being.
By choosing salary/package as constraint, your opportunities are not restricted to a specific set of companies or roles, but limited to the companies that come in your salary range. Hence, it is advised for a fresher to be clear about the range of lowest acceptable salary figures (be realistic about it and refer guides). Also, having a fairly charted out plan for your short term career goals (say 3 to 5 years) would be good. You need to verify whether you’re skilled enough for the option you end up choosing.
Having a clear salary focus with money as motivation to compete in the job market could be a good strategy at times. You have a wider range of possible options for you within the similar salary structures. A fresher might feel they would do well irrespective of the industry and the profile offered to them.
A great salary may not promise a great job always. You would be considering every job offer which seems financially attractive to you. Being a fresher, you have to brush-up about information on multiple industries. Even if you get through, there’s a high possibility that it could lead to after-choice regrets and mismatch of job profile and skill-set.
In terms of future career progression, you may end up being outpriced in the job market vis-a-vis peers. Basically, your CTC shuts out other exciting job opportunities. In most organisations, there is a salary band attached with each job level. which can’t be crossed. Pricing your skills at highest level of salary possible may play out adversely at a psychological level.
An amazing job profile at a relatively smaller brand is any day better than a not-so-nice job profile at a big brand. With time, compensation almost becomes a hygiene factor if you have a satisfying job profile. So if given a choice, bargain for a better role instead of pay-cheque. That’s what will deliver the value-for-money in the long run.