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Thread: Negotiating Salary and Expat Package

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2016
    Location
    UK
    Posts
    11

    Default Negotiating Salary and Expat Package

    Hello all,

    I made it past my phone interview and my face to face interview which was in London. (Quality Manager Role)

    I anticipate a response to get an offer next week from the company. The company in question is the largest Construction company in New zealand.

    Im looking for anyone who has relocated and either haggled with their package, received a good package, or been turned down any requests. Any industry will do, however construction would be a bonus.

    At the start i was told about the following package...

    1) $9000 in relocation costs for household items (We are hoping that we can just use this to buy used household items when in New Zealand, as we dont really cherish anything other than photos, frames, my golfclubs (which we would ship) etc.) Would this be possible? and do they transfer money or organise the relocation of items?

    2) First Months accommodation (Hotel or apartment). can this be re-negotiated to finding a home to rent as it would be roughly the same costs and mean less hassle for both employer and employee? We would then take over the rent after the first 4 weeks or whatever?

    3) First Months car hire - This is fine as it will help us get about. Although i currently in the UK receive my fuel through the company which i advised them of. Would it be rude to question about a company car that we would pay for fuel for personal use? i would also be hapy to contribute a little bit of salary towards this.

    4) One way flights....Now i don't know if im being cheeky or silly, but would these usually be economy or business class? we arent bothered which class..although we would prefer business class. and if economy is offered should we ask for business? We are also planning a stopover in either Dubai to visit family or Singapore to do touristy things on the way, which ive read is no problem

    5) Visa and Medical costs!! - Now this hasnt been mentioned as of yet, but is there the potential for the prespective employer to pay the Visa and Medical costs or reimburse these costs? Not a game changer however, it is costly. 1500 for both me and my partner.

    6) Medical - Im unsure of any medical programmes or dental programmes within the company. Ask?

    7) Salary - This is the difficult part, as for the first year my partner will not be working, as she will be flying back to the UK every 3 months to organise our Wedding (Booked for March 2018). How hard can i negotiate on the salary? Ideally we are looking for over $95,000 NZD Per annum as a minimum. however if a car is included this could be negotiated down to $85K.

    8) Other bits and peices like Mobile phones, Work Laptop etc.

    Any other bits that i have pottentially missed out above then please let me know.

    I appreciate some people will not want to discuss packages on the Forum, and in that case please feel free to private message me.

    Thanks
    QG

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Wellington, NZ
    Posts
    68

    Default

    Bear in mind that relocation packages tend to come with a clause in your contract binding you to that employer for a period of time. The more generous the package, the longer they'll want to tie you in. If you want to leave earlier, you'll usually have to pay a pro-rata amount back based on the amount of time already served with the company. Please think long and hard about that as the job can seem like mana from heaven in the UK but may not work out for any number of reasons once you're here. I've accepted two relocation packages - the one to get me from UK to Hamilton, NZ included flights, accommodation, removal costs, professional registration etc. The second package covered flights, removal costs down to Wellington and initial accommodation.

    1) Employers tend to reimburse after the fact. So you'll pay your removal costs and then (upon presentation of receipts) they'll reimburse you up to $9000 as long as the receipts match the intended purpose. I'm certain they won't pay for you to buy new things here.

    2) Highly unlikely but you could ask. Again, employers tend to not want to enter into more complicacted arrangements over and above what they offer in the relocation package. Especially if you're asking them to pay the bond on any rental place - at the end of the tenancy do they get that back? That's something they'd need to agree and keep a record of.

    3) Not rude to ask but prepare for a 'no'.

    4) Business class - I personally think you're pushing it there. As an employer, why would I pay extra for business class for you and your family when I'm already (generously) paying for your flights?

    5) Definitely ask

    6) Definitely ask

    7) If you're worth it, ask for it. They'll soon let you know what THEY think you're worth.

    8) Probably standard but check.
    Last edited by MLVB; 27th October 2016 at 07:27 AM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    NZ (Auckland; via Canada)
    Posts
    1,321

    Default

    Congratulations!

    1) $9000 in relocation costs for household items (We are hoping that we can just use this to buy used household items when in New Zealand, as we dont really cherish anything other than photos, frames, my golfclubs (which we would ship) etc.) Would this be possible? and do they transfer money or organise the relocation of items?
    I would assume it either goes towards relocation/removal costs, or you can't use these funds. Probably there are tax implications for them. My employer has a dedicated company that handled my relocation from Canada. I never saw a bill. And mine was more then $20k (NZD), which I learnt when the amount hit my budget (I'm a director). Seems overpriced, but it was nice to have it packed up for us, MAF handled and delivered to our new home.

    2) First Months accommodation (Hotel or apartment). can this be re-negotiated to finding a home to rent as it would be roughly the same costs and mean less hassle for both employer and employee? We would then take over the rent after the first 4 weeks or whatever?
    In Auckland the norm seems to be 3-5 weeks, but it varies on the rest of the package. Make sure they put you in a property with a kitchen all you'll be out of pocket for meals. They first put me in a lovely 5 star hotel in Auckland...but when they confirmed there was no per diem I had them put in an apartment/suite hotel.

    3) First Months car hire - This is fine as it will help us get about. Although i currently in the UK receive my fuel through the company which i advised them of. Would it be rude to question about a company car that we would pay for fuel for personal use? i would also be hapy to contribute a little bit of salary towards this.

    I declined this, since I was looking in city centre Auckland for a flat to rent. And being Canadian I wasn't ready to stress myself driving on the other side of the road.
    4) One way flights....Now i don't know if im being cheeky or silly, but would these usually be economy or business class? we arent bothered which class..although we would prefer business class. and if economy is offered should we ask for business? We are also planning a stopover in either Dubai to visit family or Singapore to do touristy things on the way, which ive read is no problem


    Economy almost certainly, unless you're coming in a relatively senior role. Some airfares will allow a free stop, but some free stops mean on the last flight (Asia or Middle East to NZ) your baggage allowance drops. Emirates is 30kg in economy; Singapore used to give 30kg if you were travelling on a brand new residence visa.

    5) Visa and Medical costs!! - Now this hasnt been mentioned as of yet, but is there the potential for the prespective employer to pay the Visa and Medical costs or reimburse these costs? Not a game changer however, it is costly. 1500 for both me and my partner.

    My employer covered the equivalent of a Work-to-Residence visa. However, having migrated elsewhere previously, I insisted that I be allowed to apply directly for a Resident Visa. Only took an extra month and I was still out of pocket an extra NZD1,000, but it saved me time and administrivia down the road. I paid the fees and was reimburse.

    6) Medical - Im unsure of any medical programmes or dental programmes within the company. Ask?

    Much less common than the UK or Canada or the US. But some companies either offer it (my husband's does), though perhaps not for family members.

    7) Salary - This is the difficult part, as for the first year my partner will not be working, as she will be flying back to the UK every 3 months to organise our Wedding (Booked for March 2018). How hard can i negotiate on the salary? Ideally we are looking for over $95,000 NZD Per annum as a minimum. however if a car is included this could be negotiated down to $85K.

    Assume there is a 6-10 per cent bubble for negotiating up. It might come as allowances rather than salary, but it's paid into your account exactly the same way. If it's a position that might be covered by a collective agreement, find out the union's name and ask the union for advice about negotiating.

    8) Other bits and peices like Mobile phones, Work Laptop etc.
    Also variable, but worth discussing. I work in a tech roles so I negotiated a good chunk o' coin to kit myself out with a top spec mobile office (laptop, smart phone, monitors, tablet).

    Good luck!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Christchurch
    Posts
    384

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    1) Probably not. The idea from the company's point of view is to ensure you're not out of pocket. I did negotiate a fixed amount but that was a relocation with an existing company.
    2) Very unlikely. The idea is to see you through until you find a place of your own - not subsidise you after you have found the place of your own.
    3) Maybe. Company policies on cars and fuel vary widely. It wouldn't hurt to ask.
    4) Economy. If you were hired to be the new MD or similar, it would be different.
    5) This is something that is commonly reimbursed. Ask.
    6) Again, policies vary widely. Doesn't hurt to ask.
    7) If they need to recruit from London, I would expect the salary to be at least the first number you have mentioned. This is however the tricky one: very industry and position-specific. You may wish to reach out to a recruitment consultant (you'll need a story or they probably won't bother with you).
    8) For the role mentioned, the tech bits should be a given. Do ensure that there is no confusion.

    Not many companies offer more than four weeks annual leave. However, if you're receiving more than that now and/or have been working for a fair while, you may be able to negotiate another week. I wouldn't suggest pushing this very hard for fear of sending the wrong message.
    Tax preparation assistance is sometimes offered if the candidate if faced with a complicated situation. This type of benefit is typically limited to the first few years.

    (I've had seven paid relocations)

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Location
    UK to WLG to UK
    Posts
    67

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    Hi there,

    Don't get carried away by the pathetic state of the British Peso at the moment, on $90k per annum you will not be flying back and forth to the UK, never mind three times a year. NZ is very expensive and you'll find it hard going on $90k. In real terms, your salary amounts to about 35-40k which is not a level that affords you multiple trips per year around the world or business class travel. Sorry to sound downbeat, but I'm sure when you get to NZ you'll love it. Most people do.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2016
    Location
    UK
    Posts
    11

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by chapwithatui View Post
    Hi there,

    Don't get carried away by the pathetic state of the British Peso at the moment, on $90k per annum you will not be flying back and forth to the UK, never mind three times a year. NZ is very expensive and you'll find it hard going on $90k. In real terms, your salary amounts to about 35-40k which is not a level that affords you multiple trips per year around the world or business class travel. Sorry to sound downbeat, but I'm sure when you get to NZ you'll love it. Most people do.
    Chapwithatui....

    It would only be my partner reuturning to the UK to finalise wedding plans and dress alterations etc. I would be returning with her on the 3rd trip to actually get married. After that i foresee us travelling within New Zealand and later on OZ, Not back to the UK.

    I originally said roughly $90K. However, looking at salaries for my role within the construction industry id say i should be looking at around at least $105000NZD. Due to the fact they are recruiting from overseas im hoping that they offer a competitive wage to what im on in the uk.

    Heres hoping anyway.

    Undecided yet but my other half may find temporary work leading up to the wedding (allowing her to travel back to the UK), and after the wedding looking for a permenant Office Managers Postition. (Circa $55,000NZD)

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