You are here

Determining Your Expected Salary

When preparing for the job search there are so many things to remember: network, apply, interview, etc. One thing that is often left out of preparation strategies is determining your expected salary. By researching the current market and average salaries for your target position, you can determine if an offer is on par with market value. Here are a few resources and strategies to help you uncover your target earning range as you approach your first full-time position.

ECS Salary Data

Engineering Career Services collects employment data, including salary, to maintain ABET accreditation. That data is then stripped of any identifying information and organized to show average, 25th, 50th, and 75th percentile numbers for each major and degree. This information helps determine your degree value as it is accurate for Ohio State engineers.

National Data

Educate to Career keeps a database of national salary information collected from over 50 different data sources, including the U. S. Department of Labor and U. S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. After filling in questions about your experience and offer, the system shows average salary ranges for your specific location. Visit Engineering Career Services to view national data by region and majors provided by the National Association of Colleges and Employers in quarterly salary reports.

Current and former employees provide reviews and interview advice, as well as salary information on this platform. It can be helpful, but should only be used as reference since the data is not validated and cannot be used in any post-offer negotiations.

The Salary Wizard allows you to select a position of interest and project your targeted salary range based on factors such as education, years of experience, and number of direct reports. According to the website, “'s compensation consultants have collected and reviewed data covering more than 29 million individuals working at more than 16,000 companies” to determine the market pay ranges displayed.

Take note of the salary information you collect with each source. You can then determine a range that is reasonable and backed by data. Remember, ECS recommends that you avoid any pre-offer salary negotiation conversations. More information can be found HERE.

“Success isn’t about how much you make, it’s about the difference you make in people’s lives.” - Michelle Obama


About the author

Ashley Taylor

Ashley Taylor is a Career Counselor at Engineering Career Services.