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Thread: Expected Salaray Range for an Inexperienced Coder

  1. #1

    Default Expected Salaray Range for an Inexperienced Coder

    AAPC: Back to School
    I passed my CPC exam and have gotten a few calls. I keep getting the dreaded question of what is your desired salary range. I am not sure what the answer is. I have a medical background in billing and A/R but the coding side is new to me. Any ideas?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Kansas City, MO


    That really depends on where you are geographically. Have you looked at the salary survey here on the AAPC website? The fact that you have billing experience is a plus. Here in the midwest, I have seen new coders start out around 12/hr...I think thats low! Sometimes it depends on who you work for, and what specialty you are coding. Sometimes you just need to be honest and say you're not sure. I have said in an interview that "you know, I am not sure. This is a brand new position for me. Understandably I am wanting to make more than I was previously as my new position would be more responsibility blah blah blah...could you tell me if you have a range in mind for the position?"

    Good luck to you!
    Linda Vargas, CPC, CPCO, CPMA, CPC-I, CEMC
    PMCC Licensed Instructor
    Kansas City, MO Chapter
    Member Development Officer 2016
    Harrisonville, MO Chapter President - 2013
    ICD-10 Education Coordinator- 2012
    Chapter President - 2011
    President Elect - 2010

  3. #3


    Thank you so much for the advice. I will remember that and utilize it in the future. I like the honest approach and think this approach would also be appealing to a potential employer . I will glance over the salary survey.

  4. #4


    I have read in articles that this is a trick question, either they will low ball you or pass because you are too expensive. They say the appropriate response is that you are open to a reasonable and fair rate.

    Kim, CPC

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2007


    Use the salary range as your starting point in negotiations. However, a very good negotiating tactic is to ask the interviewer what the company has budgeted for the position. Your goal is to get the highest salary while theirs is, in order to save costs, to offer the lowest. You and the company will find the middle ground and a salary offer that is agreeable to both parties.

    Remember that if you start too low that is income you will never make up even with raises. Don't sell yourself short! And good luck.

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