Question: My responsibilities have increased over the past six months and I have been receiving positive feedback on my performance. I would like to ask for an increase but not sure how to go about it. Do you have any tips?
Answer: Congratulations! Asking is much easier if you are prepared for making a case justifying the additional salary. The first step is to be ready to demonstrate how your responsibilities have increased and how your performance of the additional duties is impacting the company. Are you saving them money? Are you generating additional revenue? Are you increasing the customer base or satisfaction levels? Are you fixing problems? Be as specific as possible. Re-write your job description including the additional responsibilities. This will help you in the process and your supervisor can have it to reference after the meeting or if they need additional approvals.
You also need to do some research. With the internet it is possible to get competitive salary information. While the easiest form might be a paid report on salaries there are ways to get informal information. Talk to people in your industry. Sign up for job posting and be specific about your title. Many will list salary ranges. Look on government employment sites if they exist for your position. Much of this information is public.
Next, consider the likelihood of getting the increase. Are there things affecting the person's ability to allocate the additional funds? Does your company give out of cycle increases? Some companies have rules about annual cycles and salary changes so you should consider timing. Is the company financially performing well or is it financially taxed? Is it the off season of a seasonal business? You might again consider timing. Be prepared to address any factors that may exist affecting your request.
Finally, prepare your supervisor by letting them know why you would like to meet so they are not caught off guard and can thoughtfully consider possibilities. Prepare yourself...if they are unable or unwilling to increase your salary are there any other benefits that may be valuable to you such as a working at home or a compressed work week?
If you prepare you will be more confident and able to have a well thought out plan justifying your request. Best of luck to you...
About Betsy Braverman:
Betsy Braverman is PCMA's Human Resources Director. Prior to working with the PCMA, Betsy was a contract consultant providing consulting in all areas of Human Resources in the Healthcare, Advertising, Communications and Software Development industries. Betsy has a degree in Finance from Michigan State University coupled with an SPHR designation.