If you’re currently looking for a job in Israel, then you’re undoubtedly going to want to enter into negotiations with a clear idea of what your salary expectations for a certain position should be.
Typically employers in Israel ask candidates what their “salary expectations” (Hebrew: צפיות שכר) are off the bat as a sort of screening question at the initial phone interview stage.
Like many things in Israel, salaries in Israel are open to vigorous negotiation.
In particular, candidates can haggle over:
- Their remuneration
- Their vacation entitlement (note: at the time of writing, Israel’s minimum legal vacation entitlement is a humble 12 days per year)
- Additional perks such as a keren hishtalmut (a sort of tax-free savings plan that employers can contribute to on behalf of their employees)
- Their working hours
The typical expectation — from everything I’ve been told — is that candidates will slightly exaggerate their desired income and work on the expectation that employers will negotiate them down.
But how do you know what your worth is in the market?
As in the rest of the world, what you do and what experience you can bring to the table are large determinants of your salary. But where you derive that information is a little different.
One way to try approximate your market worth is to ask the opinion of friends working in comparable positions to the one that you’re hoping to land.
The Tel Aviv tech bubble (note: the technology sector is colloquially known as “high tech”) is relatively small.
If you have friends “on the inside” doing comparable jobs then they’re probably pretty clued up on what going pay is for a certain job (with a certain level of experience).
Compensation, of course, varies between companies. And it could depend on factors such as whether the startup is funded or not.
Despite the massive amount of differences, a couple of rules hold true in general:
- Jobs connected to high tech — in any way — tend to pay better than those in non-high-tech companies (“high tech” means roughly any company whose value proposition is centered around its technical prowess).
- Jobs in Tel Aviv and the surrounding coastal area (the “merkaz”) tend to pay better than those in peripheral areas. Jerusalem is not typically thought of as being part of the periphery, but Jerusalem salaries, for instance, are typically lower than those in Tel Aviv — although the cost of living in Jerusalem is also a bit lower.
Working With Headhunters
Israel has a number of headhunting firms including some that deal with English-speaking candidates looking for English-speaking positions.
These companies will typically send on open positions on their roster along with the salary range that the employer has budgeted for the position.
Looking Up Salary Surveys
Now it’s time to dust down the Hebrew dictionary.
A number of recruitment websites (in Hebrew) conduct annual salary surveys.
Search Google for (singular / plural):
- טבלת שכר / טבלאות שכר
- סקר שכר / סקרי שכר
Here is (part of) the latest one from JobInfo.co.il:
Other salary suryeys:
There typically give ranges for each job listed according to one’s level of experience:
תפקיד ראשון — First job
בוגר — New graduate
For 2–3 years’ experience. Etc.
Glassdoor is a great website for researching salaries.
Using Glassdoor, employees can leave anonymous reviews, and salary reports, about their employers.
The good news — for those based in Israel — is that the site has gained quite a bit of traction here over the years, just as it has done in the rest of the world.
Consider Wix for instance, one of Israel’s best-known startups.
At the time of writing, there are 467 salary reports available on Glassdoor!
If you’re looking at a company (like Wix) that has operations both in Israel and overseas, then you’ll want to click on the ‘Filter’ button and change the location to ‘Israel — All Cities’.
You can also choose to search by a particular city. But — unless you’re sure the company has distinct sites within the country — it’s usually better to just search by all cities and make sure that you don’t miss out on any relevant data.
Once you do this, you’ll start seeing Israeli salary reports which are always expressed in sheqels per month.
Note: the figures also refer to the gross pray (brutto) and not the amount after tax and benefits have been deducted (netto).
Between Glassdoor, word of mouth, and the salary reports, you should have more than enough information to guesstimate your net worth and make sure that you don’t undersell yourself when negotiating your next salary.
Article ID: 102