Six ways to get a pay rise

18 April 2014 by
First published: 21 April 2014


Short on cash? Working your backside off? It’s time to get things back in balance. Check out our six ways to get a pay rise.


  1. 1.     Be a yes woman

Taking on extra projects or helping to lighten the load of more senior colleagues can provide an opportunity to get some great experience on your CV, and can also help you work towards getting that rise. Plus it should help to get you noticed and in your boss’s good books. Ask around to find out about new projects or approach your boss and ask them directly if there’s anything you can get involved in.


  1. 2.     Do your research

Have a hunt around and see what sort of jobs are around that are similar to yours and the sorts of salaries those jobs command. It may even be worth speaking to a human resources professional or a recruitment firm. Recruitment company Reed advises finding job adverts for similar positions, or using their average Salary Checker to compare salaries across your industry and region. Having numbers and facts you can fall back on when you get to that chat with your boss will boost your confidence in your request and give you a good idea of what to pitch for.


  1. 3.     Have a chat face to face

Asking for a pay rise is not something that should be done via email or over the phone. Arrange to have a meeting with your boos at a mutually convenient time, and if possible have the meeting out of the premises, rather than in in their office, so it feels more like neutral ground.


  1. 4.     Consider your achievements

Go armed with a list of your achievements or the way in which your job role has changed. These are essential ammo for negotiating. Think about how you’ve added value to the company and how, from your boss’s point of you, they can justify giving you a pay rise – whether that’s to themselves or a more senior colleague. Reed highlights that you’ll need to ‘justify the reasons why your employer should invest more of their budget in you, so be prepared to sell yourself.’ Think about it like selling any product, you need to talk about why you are so good, what you offer that no-one else can and why what you offer is so vital to that particular company.


  1. 5.     Don’t get emotional

Take your feelings completely out of the equation. ‘Having a tantrum never worked on your mum and it won’t work now’, according to recruitment website Total Jobs. Wise words. Asking for a pay rise is a business negotiation and threats, tears and bribery won’t work. Practise what you want to say and think about how you’ll respond to what you boss might say, whether that’s negative or positive. Threatening to leave, getting argumentative or losing your cool rarely works. Keep calm, and stay positive and professional.

  1. 6.     Think ahead

If your boss can’t offer you a pay rise immediately, ask when they might be able to or what you need to do to work towards a pay rise in the future. Then follow it up again a few months later.