Considering we spend the vast majority of our life working, it’s important to feel like you’re being valued for what you do, particularly when it comes to salary. Whilst it’s absolutely true that money isn’t everything, we still need to make a living to survive.
As you move through your career, you’ll inevitably reach a point where you need, or want, to ask for a pay rise. Whether it’s to reflect the work you're doing, to align with market rates, or recognise your expertise and experience, asking for a pay rise can be daunting. So, to help you navigate your negotiations we’ve put together a few key steps to give you the best chance of getting the outcome you desire.
1. Go above and beyond
First thing’s first, if you’re going to ask for a pay rise, you need to deserve it. Unless you’re being radically underpaid in the first place, you’ll need to show that you are dedicated to your work and putting in the effort to do a good job.
If you know you’re gearing up for a pay negotiation, start putting in the extra effort to go above and beyond for your role. Now, don’t get us wrong, you don’t need to start pulling late nights or weekends. Simply be more helpful, proactive and thorough in the work that you are doing to make sure your quality of work and relationships with your colleagues are in a healthy state before you start negotiations.
2. Review your original job description & note down growth
Take a look at your original job description and do an inventory of how your role and responsibilities might have changed. It’s normal to take on additional tasks and responsibility overtime as your skill set and experience grows. Make a note of these areas and if possible the results of some of the work you’ve done. It’s good to go in prepared but not on the attack. Having an example prepared of the value you bring to the workplace is a great way to be able to show you have reason to believe you deserve a pay rise and helps ensure you feel confident to negotiate.
3. Do your research on the market value of your role
Before you walk into your boss’s office with guns blazing, make sure you do your due diligence and know what the market rate salary is for your role. Take into consideration your industry, experience, skill set and level of responsibility, particularly if you’ve got direct reports or supervisory duties. There are plenty of resources available online to help find the average salary for your role and industry. Additionally, take a look at some current job ads to see what salaries are on offer in the market.
4. Pick your timing
Timing is everything and choosing when to pop the question is no different! If you’re about to take on new responsibilities or have recently delivered a successful project, use these events to springboard into the conversation so the pay negotiation is relevant and natural.
5. Be respectful
Asking for a pay rise can be daunting, and it’s important you’re doing it for the right reasons. If you feel frustrated or undervalued and are coming from a place of anger or resentment, your employers are much less likely to be receptive to your request. Have your pitch ready, and make sure you’re coming from a place of integrity and rationality, and above all - be respectful no matter what the outcome is.