Career Advice Career Guidance and Counselling

Negotiating a raise

It is important to be aware that how you approach a salary negotiation can determine the strength of your relationship with your manager in the future. By approaching your manager in a professional way, negotiations should go smoothly and your career will remain on track, regardless of the outcome.

If you think you have a genuine case for a raise, put yourself in your manager's shoes. How well have you performed in your role? Do you contribute anything useful beyond your job description?

If you can answer yes to these questions, prepare a list of all your recent achievements that match or exceed your objectives. Then think about and list the resulting benefits to your company. The aim here is to provide strong evidence to support your position, so focus on outcomes that have added value to the company or department.

Next, objectively assess your skills and results and look for any shortcomings. Being prepared to take steps to overcome them before you negotiate can only help your cause.

Research the salary you feel your performance and results are worth by reviewing a recent salary guide.

Try to time your meeting request with good overall profitability results or after you have successfully taken on extra responsibilities or been involved in a good project outcome.

If your employer can't boost your salary now, can you agree a date for another pay review? What about additional annual leave, study or other benefits? Or you could ask your manager to outline the outcomes they need to see to justify a salary rise in future. From these you can agree set targets and a timeframe to review results.

Marc Burrage, regional director of Hays in Hong Kong