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I Feel I’ve Earned A Raise. What’s the Best Way to Discuss It With My Boss?

Are you a knowledge worker that thinks you deserve a salary increase?

If so, you’re not alone.

In this post, we’ll discuss the best way for employees in the knowledge workforce to approach their boss for a raise.

It’s not as difficult as you might think. Something is wrong if you haven’t discussed compensation with your boss in the last 12 months. Employers are especially cognizant of the need for employee retention right now. And salary is a critical metric in the retention equation. 

If you decide it’s time to change scenery with a new job opportunity, Patel Consultants can help you with all your job hunting needs. Our team can provide career advice on direct-hire and contract positions, temp-to-hire, and everything in between. Call us today at 908-964-7575, and let’s start searching for your dream job together. 

Here’s what we’ll cover in this post, focusing on the employee compensation equation:

  • Compensation Awareness
  • Defining Compensation Goals
  • Self Evaluation
  • How to Approach Your Boss

Before we get started, we wanted to share some encouraging advice for workers who might be a bit timid about asking for a raise. Here’s what the financial pundits at Money Magazine had to say in a recent article:

Few workplace conversations drum up such universal anxiety as asking for a raise.

But here’s some reassuring news: the winds are blowing — gusting, even — in your favor. It’s an employee’s market, with companies desperate to find and keep workers amid record levels of quit rates. And surveys show that most employers anticipate giving out average raises of at least 3% this year.

Still, you shouldn’t just sit back and wait to see if more money appears on your paystub.

Instead, figure out the best time to ask for your raise (ideally, you’ll approach this conversation before the budget is set in stone), and schedule a meeting with your manager where it’s clear that pay is the primary agenda item.

That’s encouraging advice for sure! But we feel that with current levels of hyperinflation, as defined by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 3% may not be a sufficient increase. 

So let’s start with the basics. 

Compensation Awareness

When you’re armed with facts, negotiating salary is much easier. Employees will need to research the compensation ranges in their position, specialization, level of expertise, company, and geographical location. Take your level of education and certifications into account. 

Talk to your coworkers and colleagues to find out what to expect concerning comp plans within your company, department, team, etc. You can also use sites like Salary.com and Linkedin as high-level guides. 

Next, you’ll want to identify and define some realistic personal goals.    

Defining Compensation Goals

Every person in the workforce has different work-lifestyle goals, and salary is potentially just one piece of the puzzle. Knowing what you want and feel you’ve earned as a compensation package is the first step in the negotiation. Alternatives to direct pay compensation include stock options, bonuses, flexible work schedules, remote work options, etc. All of these choices will figure into the equation. 

Self Evaluation

You’ll need to conduct an objective, brutally honest, retrospective self-evaluation. How have you performed on your employee reviews? Reviews are often the only documented sources of employee performance. Have you been an exceptional team member? Is your work timely, concise, and complete? Has your work been well-received by your boss and your team?  

If you can candidly answer all of these questions in the affirmative, it’s time to approach your boss. 

How to Approach Your Boss

When you’re well prepared, this is the easy part. Approach your boss and ask them to meet with you to discuss your compensation plan. Based on your research, you’ve done your homework and know what the guardrails are. Don’t forget to bring examples of complimentary emails and messages from teammates and team leads regarding your work. 

Come prepared with any additional relevant work products that reinforce your value in the workplace. 

It’s time to make your case for that much-deserved raise! 

And if it’s time to consider new opportunities, engage the recruiting team at Patel Consultants. 

We know the hiring markets intimately. Our team understands both sides of the hiring equation, the pay ranges, and the overall compensation plans in the IT space. 

You can expect us to find you the perfect employer from our long list of strategic relationships with local, regional, Fortune 100, and Global 1000 companies. Patel Consultants has over 40 years of experience placing job seekers in career-enhancing positions with exceptional companies.    

Are you an IT professional looking for temporary, contract, or permanent work? 

At Patel Consultants, we help IT, professionals like you find that perfect job, contract, or gig, every day!

Call us today at 908-964-7575, or get in touch online. Our expert recruiters are waiting for your call.