A lot of people are fearful of stepping into their managers office and asking for a raise, especially in a recession when they are just happy that they have a job. If you’re a high performing employee, you get paid what you’re worth and companies would rather pay you more than lose you to a competitor and have to backfill your position.
Here are five ways to get a pay raise today:
Do your research. The most important thing is to arm yourself with as much research as possible to verify and make your case that you really are underpaid. Compare your salary against the salary of people in your area who have similar jobs and experience. Salary.com and Payscale.com are two sites that can help you get started with that.
Prove your worth. If you want to justify the pay raise, then you should keep track of your results. Provide concrete, compelling reasons why you should get a raise — framed in a way that shows you're an asset to the company. Think also about your future at the company: things you might do to help your boss and the company achieve their goals, whatever they are.
Be straightforward. Don’t try and be sneaky about asking for a raise or even a promotion. If your gut tells you that it’s the right move, then schedule a meeting with your manager. Let them know how you feel, while showing them what you’ve done and why it’s important. A lot of managers are so busy and aren’t thinking about your needs all of the time so it’s important to remind them why you’re there.
Find the right time. Meet with your boss when he or she is not overly busy or distracted. Avoid scheduling the meeting to ask for a raise as the last meeting of the day because your boss will be more focused on leaving than on considering your request.
Be open. Do not ask for a specific number. If asked, give a range that you find acceptable. In general, tend to avoid discussing a salary amount, but rather leave that to the manager to determine. Since you gave them your data on accomplishments as well as your salary study, they can use that as a basis for how they respond. If your supervisor states that a raise isn’t viable at this time, ask if other rewards are a possible – like extra vacation days or a flexible schedule. Or, ask if you can revisit the discussion in six to nine months.