How to ask for a pay raise ?

There are situations in the career of all employees when the employee may perceive that the compensation that he is being given does not match the contributions he has made and the responsibilities that he has handled. These concerns should be brought to the attention of the immediate superior who can convey it to the management for consideration.

Before you plan to ask for a pay raise, it is ideal that you understand how the pay evaluation process works. You can get this information by talking to senior colleagues you can confide in or by referring to your employee handbook. Try to find out the current market rate for a person with your skills and qualifications. Talking to your friends and acquaintances holding similar positions in other companies can help.

Prepare listing of the contributions you have made. Elaborate on the achievements such as cost savings, improved productivity etc. Be prepared with the facts and figures. Arrive at a figure which you feel a person of your qualification and experience deserves. Ensure that the figure is realistic and in line with the market conditions.

Now that you have done your homework, plan a meeting with your superior. Do not try to raise the issue at a point when your boss is busy or preoccupied with some other issue. This may be counter productive and you may have lost an opportunity as your boss may not wish to discuss the issue again for a long time. Giving your boss advance information helps him to talk to the Human resources department and to do his own study.

At the meeting, be frank and polite in your demands. Justify your demands by showing him the evidence for your achievements and responsibilities you have taken. Put forth your demands in a courteous and polite manner.

If your superior says that a pay rise would not be possible at this point in time, ask him as to what you need to do to become eligible during the next pay evaluation.

Do not threaten to quit if your pay is not raised. This may sour relations and may become counterproductive if your superior refuses to raise your salary. Your credibility could be affected. If you feel that you deserve better than what you currently are getting, start searching the job market.

Using the offer letter from a rival company as a bargaining tool could also be disadvantageous in the long run. Even if you manage to get a raise for the moment, you could find yourself deprived of other key projects, training opportunities etc. The company may think of your demand as blackmail and may lose trust and may try to sideline you.