Everybody wants to make as much money as possible, and your full-time job is usually going to be your most fruitful avenue toward doing so. When you take a job for a specific salary, though, by no means are you bound to accept that salary forever. As companies grow and develop, people do too, and as you gain more experience with your company, your value grows too. This might be time for a pay raise.
Of course, all requests for salary raises have to come with reason. The better your job performance is, the more likely you are to receive a pay raise as time goes by.
But assuming you check that box and have a reasonable belief that you have outgrown your current salary, here are a few tips on how you can then leverage that experience into a greater salary.
Request a one-on-one meeting with your boss, and make your case for a pay raise then
You might be surprised how many people eschew this step, but it does happen- and people who blurt out “I deserve a raise!” in an inappropriate fashion or setting do a great deal of damage to their cases. Needless to say, do not do this when asking for a raise. Instead, reach out to your boss to schedule a date and time to discuss your overall performance, and bring up the topic then.
Research the market
What do other people who do the same sorts of work as you get paid on average? Are you making less than them, about the same, or more? If you’re making less than the national average for your particular skill set and experience level, that could be part of your argument as to why you deserve a pay raise. If you’re making close to that national average, though, or more, you likely won’t be able to go down that path, and instead will have to focus more on your results.
See what your employee handbook says about a pay raise
Different companies in different industries may have different protocols for raises, but you can usually at least get an idea about what your particular company’s pay raise protocols are by consulting your employee handbook. In some cases, the criteria needed for a raise are cut and dried, and either you’ve hit certain metrics or you haven’t. In other cases, it’s more of a gray area, with more subjective metrics listed that are at least somewhat up for interpretation. But more often than not, your employee handbook can give you an idea as to whether you truly deserve a pay raise or not.
Present your case for why you deserve a pay raise
Anyone can claim to be trying their best, and that they’re always putting in hours late at night or on weekends, but you’ll need to come up with a list of tangible accomplishments to present to your boss in your explanation of why you deserve that pay raise. Your effort matters, but your results matter more. Prepare a list of your recent highlights and achievements, and then when stating your case, make sure you do so not with arrogance and bravado, but with the confidence that you have in your abilities.