Career tips

How do you ask for a salary raise?

Asking for a pay rise yourself is something that many employees abhor. Although your salary package is a difficult subject to broach with your manager, it still provides a literal appreciation of your work. That is why it is essential to get it right. If you think you are entitled to a raise, then it is important to start the conversation professionally and well prepared. These tips can certainly help you to successfully ask for more pay.

5 useful tips to successfully ask for a salary increase 

1. Get clear about what you really want

Knowing in advance what you would prefer to receive, increases the chance of getting a raise you are actually satisfied with. Furthermore, by expressing what you think you are worth, you send a very powerful and convincing signal. In our blog about the salary jungle you will find pointers on how to map and benchmark your current salary package. Don't only think in terms of salary, but also in benefits that will make you happier. Depending on the specific situation, a purely financial salary increase of 5 to 10% is a common guideline. But sometimes a mobile phone, company car, training or more flexible hours are more valuable than euros in your bank account. Be flexible. 

2. Prepare your case in detail

If you want a pay rise, you will have to demonstrate why your value has increased or no longer matches your current salary. What tangible contributions have you made to the company or team? In what way are your achievements a crucial link? Do you have more responsibilities or a broader scope of work? Have you followed training courses which improved your level of knowledge and the quality of your work? So, gather very concrete arguments as to why you want to earn more. Put them all in writing and simultaneously think of any possible objections. 

3. Choose your moment carefully

Your timing is extremely important. After an adjustment to your responsibilities, a special achievement or positive assessment, there is a clear starting point for a talk. The annual budget preparation period in your company is ideal because then your question can be immediately taken into consideration. Also keep in mind the agenda and workload of your manager. Ensure that you have the necessary time to discuss your case in the best possible circumstances. This can only increase your chances of success.

4. Maintain a professional attitude during the interview

Once the date has been set, you can work out the details of the meeting itself. Start with a clear opening in which you clearly state the purpose of the meeting. For instance: "Thanks for taking the time to sit down with me today. I would like to discuss some of my recent achievements and my terms of employment". Focus on your 3 most significant elements. Try to rehearse all possible scenarios of the conversation with a confidant or mentor based on your prepared case. Whatever the feedback from your manager, always remain friendly and positive. Be flexible. Dare to ask questions and listen very actively to what is being said. Literally adopt an open attitude in a '10 for 2' setting instead of directly opposite your manager.

5. Yes, not now or no

In the most positive scenario, the manager will answer your question. Congratulations! Make sure that, after the meeting, you receive an email confirming what you agreed. This way, there is no room for surprises or ambiguities. If the answer is yes, but not now, we really recommend you make concrete agreements about the future. Try to get an idea about the timeline your manager has in mind and agree on a timing for a next meeting. Also, ask about what else you can do to make sure you get to a yes. Don't let yourself be put off or discouraged by empty phrases such as 'it's up to higher management to decide'. Keep pursuing it. Will it nevertheless be a definitive no? Then it is up to you to think about whether and how you want to continue your career.

Remember that many employees find it difficult to negotiate a pay rise or salary proposal. If you are doing a great job and no one sees it, there is little point in doing so. Really be aware of your own value and your value to your employer. It also never hurts to set aside any modesty and make sure your successes are noticed by key players such as management members, executives from other departments or your boss's boss. 

We hope all these tips will ease the tension around asking for a raise. Properly prepared, at the right time and with a professional attitude, your success is within reach. We wish you good luck! 


Would you like to work with Arcadius in the search for your dream job? Find out what we can do for you. We look forward to meeting you! 

Follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook and Instagram.

Recente artikelen


Arcadius uses cookies to remember certain preferences and align jobs interests.