I have a second interview in December that I've started preparing for. I realize that I don't have a good idea of how to respond to a “way too low” salary range. I consider the position fairly senior in that it deals with initiating and negotiating contracts for IT services. I'd be very happy to get the position and I'd be excited about the new development opportunities that it offers.
In doing research on this company, I've learned from credible sources that they tend to lowball compensation and not just on jobs related to negotiations. My research says they are likely to offer about 60-75% of my minimum acceptable salary. My minimum might have a little flexibility based on cost of living in different locales, but we're not even close. I understand about looking at total compensation, but if there is such a large discrepancy in base, almost no amount of other compensation can make up for it.
If this happens, my thought is to be direct with them about my disappointment over the low range even though it would probably cost me an offer. I would probably use a phrasing like "Wow, I'm a little disappointed. I consider this position to be fairly important to your organization and I'm very surprised to see such a low number. I was hoping to see something more in the range of 110-120% of my target." Yes, its just negotiations.
Question – is this the best tact to take or is there something better? Is there a better way of phrasing it? As I think about it, I see this as the only way forward. I’d really like the job, but I’m afraid that its too far out of reach.