Asking for the Raise You Deserve

So you’re ready for a raise, huh? Being prepared is the key to successfully asking for — and getting — the raise you deserve. By following these steps, you can greatly improve your chances of receiving a nice pay raise.

Check Company Policies
Before making an appointment with your supervisor to discuss a raise, check your company’s policy manual or employee handbook to understand its salary review policies. Some companies won’t consider granting raises unless you’ve been employed for a specific period of time, such as a year or more.

Request a Meeting
Give yourself plenty of time to prepare for your meeting with your supervisor. Ask for a 30-minute meeting to review your request. This should provide enough time to discuss your reasons for the raise. Hopefully your boss or supervisor has their own office; you don’t want the personal details of your salary to be overheard in the next cubicle.

Ask for a Realistic Amount
Although it’s tempting to ask for a big pay increase, make sure your expectations are realistic for your position, experience and qualifications. One way to see whether or not your request is realistic is to look at salaries for comparable jobs in your city or state. How does your salary stack up against the same jobs elsewhere? You may want to keep these figures handy to show your supervisor so they can see how you arrived at the figure you’re requesting.

Give Them a Reason to Say “Yes”
Give your boss every reason to say “yes” by gathering evidence that you’ve done an outstanding job and have contributed to the company’s success. This supports your request for a merit-based raised, or a raise based on your achievements and accomplishments. Some examples to bring to your meeting could include:

Facts and figures about success achieved on projects. For example, did your marketing plan increase sales for the company or leads for the sales team?

Evidence that you’ve saved the company time or money.

Positive feedback or good performance reviews that show you’ve done a greatjob.

It’s helpful to prepare a folder to leave behind with your supervisor if he or she needs time to consider your request. Print out a copy of each of your supporting documents, and create a summary to leave on the top of your printouts. The summary should include your name and a list of the highlights from the supporting documents. At the end, conclude with your request for a raise and include a specific dollar or percent amount.

Paint a Bright Picture
Before closing your meeting, paint a bright picture of your future with the company. Based on what you’ve accomplished so far, what will you achieve in the next year? Show your supervisor how valuable you are not just for what you’ve done, but for what you will do, too.

Say Thank You
Most supervisors will consider your request and many will grant a raise, even a small one. But what if your supervisor says no? Thank them anyway. Granting a raise may be out of his or her control, or the timing may not be right for the company. You never know if that polite response will make your supervisor think of you first when it’s time to hand out bonuses or a better-paying position within the company becomes available.

In the future, keep track of all of your successes, big and small. Keep a file at your desk or on your computer to store project results, congratulatory emails, customer recommendations and other positive notices. It may seem silly, but the more you can show how your work impacts the business, the better.

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