Personal Finance

Have You Asked for a Raise in the Past Year? Here’s Why You Should

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Now’s a good time to go after more money.


Key points

  • New data reveals that most workers who recently asked for a raise were successful in boosting their pay.
  • If you approach that conversation strategically, you’re more likely to get a pay bump yourself.

It’s fair to say that most of us would rather earn more money at our jobs than less. But these days, getting a boost in pay is especially important.

First of all, a lot of people had to empty their savings accounts or rack up debt to get by during the pandemic. And if you’re still in the process of recovering from that blow, then a raise could certainly help you move forward.

Also, right now, living costs are soaring due to inflation. It’s costing more money than ever to buy gas, cover utility bills, and put food on the table. A raise could help with all of that.

Plus, right now, a lot of companies are struggling to staff their businesses. And so your employer may be more likely to agree to a pay boost in an effort to keep you on board.

Over the past year, 28% of workers have asked for a pay raise, according to recent data from Employ. And of those workers, 72% saw their earnings increase as a result.

But if you’re going to ask for a raise, it’s important to approach that discussion strategically. Here are a few ways to prepare.

1. Research salary data

It’s one thing to ask for more money just because, but it’s another thing to request a raise because you can prove the average person in your area with your job title earns more than you. That’s why it’s so important to research salary data before talking money with your employer.

Sites like Salary.com let you dig up earnings data you can put in front of your manager to make the case for more money. And having that information could also help ensure your request comes off as reasonable.

You may, for example, want to boost your current $65,000 a year salary to $80,000. But if the average salary for your job in your area is only $72,000, you might come across as unrealistic. And that’s not what you want.

2. Prepare talking points

Maybe you spearheaded a major project last year that made your company more money. Or maybe you have a solid track record of solving problems when other colleagues can’t.

Either way, before you have that salary discussion, make a list of the specific ways you add value to your company. That should give you more of a leg to stand on when you ask for a bump in pay.

3. Practice your pitch

Talking salary can be nerve-wracking. After all, there’s a lot on the line. That’s why it could pay to run through your pitch before getting in front of your boss. You can practice in front of a mirror or enlist the help of a friend to be your sounding board. If you go the latter route, that friend may be able to offer up some tips on how to make the most effective argument.

Go after the money

With living costs up across the board and so many people spending more money on essentials, now’s an important time to pursue a raise. Just make sure to prepare for that conversation accordingly.

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