It’s never really an easy conversation and the build up to discussing a pay rise can be stressful! You know you’re worth more to your company but you need to convince your boss or manager. Our ever-helpful team have compiled some practical tips to help you to work out when, why and how you can be successful in getting that much deserved pay rise!
There are certain times when a conversation regarding your salary will come more naturally; i.e. at a performance review. However, if you’re not willing to wait for that, there are some better times to ask for the conversation.
Waiting until the end of your company’s financial year can help you out. It’s at this time of year that your managers will review their spending and be in a better position to make the decision about any employee pay rises.
Holding off until after any sales targets have been met is also recommended. Booking some time in with your boss to chat about a pay-rise during a particularly busy or stressful time in your team is likely to negatively affect your outcome. This will also stand you in good stead (provided you meet or exceed your targets) as you can mention this in your pay review.
Keeping an eye on what’s going on in your industry sector can also help you out with picking a good time for the conversation. If your salary is below industry benchmarks or equally your skill set is in high demand, you’ll be in a much better position to negotiate as your employers will not want to lose you!
Put together some concrete reasons why you deserve a pay increase and prepare responses to the questions that are likely to pop up. Try not to relate it to personal circumstances (new car/mortgage) and tailor it more towards your worth to the company and what you can do for them.
There are probably numerous reasons you can relate to and bring into your pay review, although selling yourself and your skill set is sometimes hard. Here are some examples you might want to include;
- Consistently exceeding targets – A great selling point with concrete evidence of your contribution and value to the company.
- You have or are about to take on additional responsibility. – If you’re doing the work of two people or are taking on more responsibility, you are in a good position to negotiate for a salary that matches the new effort and challenges you will face in your role.
- You have trained or acquired a new skill/vocational qualification – This can also stand you in good stead for a pay rise. Focus on explaining the value of your new skills or knowledge and how this has prepared you for a bigger challenge.
Timing is important, as are the reasons you provide for why you deserve a pay increase…However, now for the big question – How do you actually get it!?
Don’t surprise your boss or manager
Asking them for a ‘chat’ is vague and might catch them off guard which could ultimately prompt a ‘no’. Try finding some free time in their diary or requesting some time to talk about expectations. This will give them a bit of an idea of the type of conversation and can make the whole experience less stressful overall for both parties.
Be prepared and present your case
You could start with mentioning a recent assignment you were successful on as this will kick the meeting off with a positive tone and get you in your manager’s good books.
Breathe and remember
Use all of those techniques you know from your interviews (if you’ve forgotten, read our interview tips) to overcome any nerves and present a clear case of what you want to achieve and why you deserve it! Be sure to mention what you’ve achieved, skills, your future potential and any extra bargaining tools such as your popularity in your team, attitude, willingness to work overtime etc.
Frame your request in regards to your future potential and performance. It’s great to mention what you have done for the company so far, but you also need to identify how your role will grow or you will bring more to the company. Your manager/boss will be more likely to offer you a pay rise if you can show how you will grow within the company. You want the request to be based on what you can achieve for the company, and not an obligation of your employment.
This can be hard, and uncomfortable for some. The main point to remember here is to aim high. Ask for more than you expect to get but not so high that you come across as arrogant. (You will kick yourself if you ask for a lower number and your boss accepts straightaway). Once the negotiation is out of the way, be sure to give it some time. Don’t rush things as your manager or boss is likely to need to go away and work out some numbers. Be patient and ask to be kept up to date with your request.
Don’t be closed off to other benefits
It’s also useful to bear in mind when negotiating that if a pay rise is not available, there may be other benefits that you can negotiate for such as a company car, fuel contribution or additional holiday which can actually help free up some of your existing salary.
The dreaded NO
Ultimately, do be prepared for a ‘no’. You may well not receive the pay rise, but this doesn’t mean it’s a permanent decision. Remain professional and positive and ask when might be a more convenient time to review your request. Then get back and work even harder until the next conversation to boost your chances for that well deserved pay rise!
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