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Negotiating for a Pay Raise

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Asking for a much higher salary is never a comfortable scenario both for you and your boss. Yet you have to be the one to break the ice, especially if you feel you’re now worth more than what you currently earn. Learn more today from Perfect Payday, where you can apply for payday loans.

No matter how nerve-wracking this situation is, you have to initiate the discussion. Even if the company acknowledges the time and hard work you put into your work, they would rather not talk about it if they had a choice.

So, salary negotiations rest in your own hands, and you don’t have to feel guilty or awkward about asking for something you feel you deserve. Especially now that the cost of living continues to rise, a salary increase is definitely needed.

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But how do you go about negotiating your salary in a way that is not awkward or desperate? Here are some tips you can do to ask for a pay rise without coming across as greedy or entitled.

1. List down the reasons why you’re asking for a pay rise

Knowing why you have to negotiate for bigger pay will motivate you into moving forward with the decision. Ask yourself why you need it and if those reasons are enough to be considered for a raise.

Do you need it because you feel you have been working for so long with the company? Do you feel you have given more time and effort on your job than what is expected of you? Have you realised you’ve become more valuable to the company and your current compensation doesn’t justify that? Do you feel your salary isn’t on par with what is currently offered in the market?

Ask yourself these questions when making a decision, but know that a few of those reasons won’t cut it to get the pay increase you deserve.

For instance, if you’re asking for higher pay just because you’ve been working for the company for years, it’s not reason enough. Keep in mind that your position comes with a corresponding rate that is adjusted to meet inflation rates and cost of living expenses. As long as the company knows this is being met, there’s no reason for them to adjust your salary as well.

A good enough reason would be knowing that you have become a valuable asset to the company. You can justify that you have accomplished a lot in your position and the excellent performance you’ve shown was instrumental in the continuous success of the company.

In line with this, you can also make your company realise that there’s more to your past achievements. Your potential to accomplish more is worth looking into, and a salary increase should be equivalent to your worth as a valuable asset to your company.

You have to know, however, that taking the “I am valuable” route should really provide the company some benefit. That investing in you as an asset will be worth their time and money.

So, when you ask yourself these questions, it helps that you know what you’re talking about. Take the time to research about what your company stands for and how your current and future contributions could benefit them.

2. Gather evidence to support your worth

If you go down the “I am valuable” route, you have to know what your actual worth is. This means gathering evidence to show that your current pay doesn’t reflect what your true worth is as a valuable employee.

To support this claim, you’ve got to make an in-depth research on the market rates for your position. You can check job advertisements of other companies and compare the salary packages they offer. You can also refer to colleagues with the same position in other companies or recruitment experts in the industry.

The caveat here is when you realise, after much research and consultation, that your actual worth and your salary are a perfect match. Don’t be disheartened, though. You can use your skills, experience, and achievements as evidence to support your argument.

Do note, however, that if you use your individual performance as leverage, you have to prove that you have indeed delivered above and beyond what is expected of you, and the effort you’ve shown benefitted the company financially. You also have to show evidence that your skills and professional qualities are given more value in other positions.

If you can support your argument with hard evidence, your chances of negotiating a salary increase will be much higher.

3. Find the perfect timing

Timing is everything when money is concerned, which is why it is important that you know the right time to ask for a raise. Make sure that the company could afford to give you one.

Do your research and make sure that the company isn’t going through any financial challenges that might hinder them from reconsidering salary packages. If this is the case, you might as well wait for the right time until the company recovers financially, so you won’t come across as inconsiderate.

However, this is a double-edged sword: if the company is indeed under financial stress, they might be thinking of ways to minimize company expense, which may include letting some people go. This means if you fail to speak up to at least prove your worth as an employee, you may find yourself without a salary to even negotiate on.

Pro-tip: If you know your company can afford to give pay rises, it is best to negotiate yours towards the end of the financial year. It is during this period that most organisations are setting their budgets for the next fiscal year, including salary increments, recruitment expenses for new hires, and training. This is the opportune time to present your case, as the company most probably have an idea how much a certain position is worth and if this is reasonable or not.

4. Create different scenarios

Whilst it is not wise to assume anything yet, it will serve you well when you set your expectations based on how your company goes about reviewing salary increase requests.

The best way to go about this is to review your own employment contract. Check if the company conducts annual pay reviews and when. Review their policy on salary and performance reviews – if you will argue about your stellar performance as basis for a raise, your company may be reviewing pay and performance reviews separately. In this case, you have to wait until it’s your turn to be reviewed.

Review your employment contract carefully, as it most probably stipulates there when you are eligible for a pay review. Most companies conduct theirs during employment anniversaries, so you may want to wait for yours to negotiate a raise. If none has been conducted in years, it is definitely encouraged that you initiate the discussion.

If, for any acceptable reason, the company cannot afford to grant your pay rise request, you may want to ask for another review in a couple of months or consider other incentives in lieu of a salary increase. Offering incentives also speaks volumes about how you are valued as an employee.

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5. Write a formal letter of request

Express your intent by sending your boss a letter of request, which provides comprehensive details on why you believe you deserve a pay rise. A documentation of your request is important before the pay review discussion, as your boss may have to present your case to the higher ups.

Make sure your letter is straight to the point and written articulately. Avoid coming off as defensive, especially when you provide reasons why you should get an increment. Make sure your letter reflects honesty but done in a professional manner.

6. Be upfront but polite

During the pay review, don’t hesitate to pitch the first offer. This sets the tone of the negotiation, whether they will accept your pitch or renegotiate.

When you come up with a figure, make sure it is legitimate and reflects that you have done your research. Be truthful about your concerns and be firm about why you deserve to be given a pay rise without being rude or bratty about it. Respect begets respect, and you’ll most likely get what you want if you show that you are professional and logical in making your request.

Make sure you are consistent. If in your letter you spoke about how the increment will motivate you to work even harder, make sure this is well articulated during the face-to-face meeting. Show assertiveness but not in a demanding way: the way you speak and your body language should reflect that you are willing to negotiate and can be flexible if the situation calls for it.

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7. Avoid being emotional

Should your salary increment request gets denied, make sure to move on from this with dignity. There is no need to be emotional about it. You can ask your boss why you were rejected and accept this with grace and humility.

It’s up to you if you want to continue working for the company after this or find employment elsewhere. Before arriving at a decision, keep in mind that you may be denied now, but it doesn’t mean you will again after a couple of months. So, make sure that you will not decide based solely on impulse.

Should you decide to leave the company, make sure to be professional about it. Thank the company for their support and let them know that you are grateful for what they have contributed to your career growth. Showing professionalism during your resignation means getting a good recommendation letter afterwards.

Keep these tips in mind to ensure a proper pay rise negotiation. Remember that the key is to be professional when you make and discuss about your request. Whether or not it takes you anywhere, you would at least know that you have what it takes to push your career further.

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