It is a common fact that many employees feel undervalued in the salary they receive. Some are low-balled when they start a new job and promised a raise within a short time which never materializes. Asking for a raise should be handled tactfully. A few tips….

1.  What’s your job worth? Know the market value of your job. Go beyond your title and also use your responsibilities as a common denominator to compare salaries with other companies or salary comparison websites.

2.  Educate yourself on internal and external pay comparisons. And talking to your HR manager will help you learn about the company compensation policies, increase practices, and salary ranges.

3.  Believe in yourself. How will you sell your worth to others if you don’t believe it first? You know why you are worth more money, sell that to your boss.

4.  Don’t beg. No matter how much you need the extra money, that should not be the focus of your conversation. Your focus should be that you deserve a raise because you add value.

5.  Timing counts. Best time to ask for a raise is after you’ve completed a challenging project or helped the company achieve a major goal.

6.  Be realistic. Asking for a raise that is within the guidelines of company policies and in line with the level of the job is more likely to get approved than a request that is outside standard business practices.

7.  Go for it! You’ll never be satisfied if you don’t ask. Salesmanship 101 – you have to ask for the sale – or in this case, the raise. Practicing your presentation ahead of time will help build your confidence.

8.  Don’t consider it a failure if you get a “no.” Consider:

  • Asking what you could do differently to gain your boss’s approval of a raise
  • Asking what might be a reasonable time to re-address your request
  • Asking if there are other compensation benefits that could be offered if salary budget is an issue
  • Asking for a better title and/or more responsibilities. I know I know this may seem counter-intuitive to ask to take on more duties without more money, but it will position you for a higher-level salary comparison in the future and prove to your boss you are serious about improving your skills and abilities, as well as your salary.