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Image / Editorial

Everyone complains about their salary but do you actually deserve a pay raise?


by Colette Sexton
15th Mar 2018

Everyone complains about their salary but when are you truly entitled to a raise? Colette Sexton, news correspondent at The Sunday Business Post, explores.

You want a pay raise. Of course you do, everyone does. But in order to get one, you need to prove you deserve it.

Think you deserve a pay raise because you have been working there a long time? Because someone else got one? Because your rent has increase or you want to buy a car? None of those excuses will cut it. However, there are several scenarios in which you really do deserve a bump in salary.

  1. Money

When asking for more money, the best thing to do is look at the ways you have either earned or saved the company cash. This could be anything from finding a cheaper supplier to landing a big new client. Or it could be a bunch of little cost savings or earnings which will all add up over time. Worth out how much you have made for the company, and request a percentage of that as a bump in your salary.

  1. Responsibility

Have you started managing more people? Volunteered to work longer hours? Started training new staff? Then you have reason to ask for more money. Make a list of all of the additional responsibility you have taken on since your last pay increase or since you took up the position. This proves to your employer how invaluable you are to the business (and importantly, how much work you take off their hands).

  1. Competitors

Do some research into what people are getting paid for similar roles by talking to recruiters and others you know in the industry. During the recession, many companies implemented a pay freeze or even pay cuts but much of that has been reversed by now. However, do not turn this into a “I’ll leave if you don’t pay more” confrontation or you could be on an unexpected job hunt. Approach your employer and politely inform them that you like your role and the current company, but that you feel you are being underpaid when compared to the rest of the market. If they will not agree to a bump, then maybe it is time to look elsewhere.

Remember that no matter what your reason is for asking for an increase, you will need cold, hard evidence to support it. Even if you do not plan on asking for a pay raise for a few months, start documenting everything from when a superior or client praises your work to when you work late to get a project done. If your boss says no to the pay raise, it can be disheartening, but always ask why and request a review in three or six months’ time. During that period, take any feedback on board and approach your review confident that you have ticked all of their boxes.   

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