If you're thinking about a pay increase and it doesn't look like it's going to happen without action on your part, it's important to be prepared before you ask for a raise.
Here are tips and advice on how to get ready to ask for a raise, how to request a pay raise diplomatically, and what to expect after you ask for a salary increase.
Get Ready to Ask for a Raise
Review salary survey information. Check out salary surveys to see what your job is worth, review recent performance appraisals that document the job you're doing, and review any other relevant information that will support your request for a raise.
Be aware of company policy. Know your company policy regarding compensation. Some employers are limited by budget constraints and can only give raises at certain times of the year, regardless of the circumstances.
Know what you want. Have a clear idea of what you want. Know how much of a raise you're looking for and your justification for the increase and have both ready to review with your manager.
Be flexible. Would you consider an extra couple of weeks' vacation instead of a raise? How about a flexible work schedule? Consider what might be a good alternative if the money isn't in the budget to give you a raise.
Request a meeting. Ask your manager if you can schedule a meeting to discuss salary. You may also want to make a formal written request for a raise.
How to Ask for a Raise
If your paycheck is falling short and you are ready to ask for raise, these tips on how to ask for a raise from Tom Silver, SVP, North America of Dice will help you negotiate a pay increase:
- Make sure you have talking points that are clear and backed up by documented information (have you driven cost-savings, positive reviews for your work throughout the year from peers, how did you help the company meet its goals);
- Know what the going rate is for your job in the region;
- It's a negotiation: listen to your boss's points and counter; and
- If the raise doesn't materialize, have a fallback plan i.e. do you want a title change; do you want to work on an emerging technology project.
What to Expect After You Have Asked for a Raise
Don't expect an immediate answer. Your manager, unless you're at a very small company, may not have the authority to give you a pay raise even if he or she wants to. It will probably need to be discussed with Human Resources and/or other company managers.
Finally, don't feel badly if your request is turned down. There simply may not be money in the budget for pay increases, regardless of how well deserved your raise may be.
In addition, many companies have formal company policies that determine salaries and pay raises, so there may not be flexibility to give you a raise other than when you are eligible for one under company guidelines.
Salary Information and Advice