How Do You Ask Your Boss for a Raise?


Quick Answer

There are several things that are required to successfully ask a boss for a raise. This includes details of past work performance, a realistic expectation, correct timing, and confidence.

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Full Answer

Many people do not ask for a raise but of those who do, 75 percent are successful. That is the findings of a survey by PayScale. Here is how to ask for a raise to increase the chances of success.

  1. Get the timing right
  2. Simply getting the timing wrong can mean rejection or a lower than anticipated pay rise. Check the company's procedures and manuals to see if there is any written guidance, and ask other colleagues or managers for advice. Do not leave it until an annual performance review, however. Discussions about pay rises should take place before this.
  3. Know why the raise is justified
  4. Focus on the responsibilities of the employee as well as past job performance and accomplishments. It is a good idea to keep a record of these throughout the year. And, if possible, offer new ways that the employee will be able to add value in the future.
  5. Be realistic
  6. It is important to ask for the right amount. This can be found out by talking to human resources, or other people who do a similar job in a different company. If the salary rise is to recognize an increase in responsibilities or a promotion, 10 percent or more is realistic. Annual increases to adjust for the cost of living are usually more like 3 to 5 percent.
  7. Proactive in rejection
  8. If the answer is no, ask what can be done during the coming months to change that decision.
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