5 Times It’s Okay to Take a Pay Cut

By September 15, 2017For Talent

Despite what some people say, money doesn’t actually make the world go round (sorry Liza Minnelli).

When we’re job hunting we can become completely wrapped up in our salary expectations. But there are a few occasions when it’s acceptable to take a pay cut for a new job.

Here are just a few examples.


1. When you need more work-life balance

For many people, a good work-life balance is much more important than money in the bank.

Research by Fidelity found that millennials, in particular, were willing to take a pay cut of up to $7,600 if it meant that they could achieve a better work-life balance.

Would you take a slight pay cut if it halved your commute? Would you accept a smaller wage if you could work remotely? You need to think about these things when you’re job hunting.

2. When you’re completely changing careers

I hate to break it to you, but if you’re completely changing your career then you’re going to have to take a hefty pay cut.  All the experience you’ve gathered over the years won’t mean squat if you’re starting from scratch.

You’ll probably have to begin at an entry level job and slowly work your way back up the career ladder. Hopefully, it will all be worth it if you find a career you truly love.

3. When you’re moving somewhere more affordable

There’s a huge difference between the cost of living in New York and San Antonio or Dublin and Mayo.

If you’re moving to a city with a lower cost of living then you should consider taking a pay cut. Always factor in things like average rents, transport costs, and food prices before making your decision.

4. When you’re taking a step down

Maybe being a manager wasn’t all it was cracked up to be or maybe the director’s role was too much pressure. Contrary to popular opinion, lots of people choose to step down from high power roles into low-stress staff positions.

If you’re trying to decide whether or not a pay cut is right for you, don’t forget to compare your workload and responsibilities. If you’ll have a much easier role in your new position the pay cut might be reasonable.

5. When you’re going to work for a non-profit

It’s no surprise that non-profit organisations usually have much tighter budgets. However, if you are passionate about the organisation and the work that they do then you may feel like a move there could be worthwhile.

Before you accept a pay cut from a non-profit make sure that you don’t shoot yourself in the foot by accepting a salary that is over 10% lower than your current one. This will make it so much harder to get a better salary when you leave the role.



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Author Alice Murray

Alice Murray is a Content Creator at Jobbio with a passion for Employer Branding and Graduate Culture. She's a keen traveller and a self-proclaimed lazy runner.

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