How to Ask for a Pay Rise

We get it - asking for a pay rise can be daunting no matter how long you've been working for! As recruiters, we advise our clients and candidates on salary queries regularly. Money is not the be all and end all, but it’s important to make sure that you feel adequately paid for your hard work.

If you feel like you deserve an increase in your salary, read our top tips below on the best ways to go about the process. 


Know your value

Emma Burke - Agency Recruitment Director

With an ever-changing job market, comes an ever-changing range of salaries, that wavers with the times. Some businesses have much stricter regulations when it comes to pay rises than others, so asking the question can sometimes be met with blockers, objections, and refusal; the thought of all these can act as a deterrent. Some are afraid of asking for a pay rise in the thought of being considered greedy, but conversely it can show strength and knowing your value to a business

If you feel that you’re being underpaid for the role you do, or want to be paid competitively in line with the market, do some research into job adverts and see what they’re being advertised for. It helps if you have a good relationship with a recruiter within your line of specialism to find out what someone with your experience can expect to find on the job market. It may be that they recommend that you’re actually being paid competitively for the work that you do, and in line with other roles in comparison. Recruitment Consultants aren’t just there to find people jobs, the ‘Consultant’ side means that they/we can offer fair advice. 


Keep going!

Alice Moore - Data & Technology Recruitment Consultant

There are many companies where pay rises need to be approved by many people at various levels, go to HR etc. In this case I would always advise keeping an open line of communication, maybe even asking for a timeline. Ask how long that normally takes, and if you are uneasy with the time frame they give then always voice that. If you’re told a pay rise isn’t achievable right now, find out when it will be available, and what do you need to do to get there? The same is said for asking for a promotions. 

Some other companies cannot offer what you are looking for, and that’s ok. My advice would be to always remember what you need and want - don’t end up in an uncomfortable position (in this case financially) for anyone else. If the company that you are at cannot offer you what you need, it’s ok to see what else is on the market. You should always weigh up the advantages you currently have such as flexibility, training etc., but a lot of that can be negotiated elsewhere. It’s important to not feel trapped due to fear of the unknown.


Advice for Employers - How to handle an employee’s request for a pay increase

Leif Radford - Data & Technology Recruitment Director

If possible, try to hire candidates whose salary expectation is less than the total budget you have had allocated, leaving room for you to reward hard work without needing to undertake a whole re-budgeting process

Ensure your team have clear, tangible objectives that are formally reviewed on a regular basis, enabling you to be aware of whether they are in relation to their targets – if they’re massively over-delivering then a pay review is reasonable, if they’re not then you have solid justification for not approving a pay increase

Always take these requests seriously, devoting the proper time and attention to make the member of staff feel heard, even if you’re already sure of the outcome. Rebutting a pay rise is one thing, to make an employee feel that you aren’t even open to a discussion will inevitably cause them to start looking elsewhere


If you'd like anymore advice, you can contact us here.

You can also request our Salary Survey to see up to date salary bands for your job title.


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