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How To Ask For A Pay Rise In The UK

  • In Employment
  • 04 May 2022, 11:33 AM
  • By Technologist Confidant
How to ask for a pay rise
Asking your boss for a pay raise can be disquieting, and some people put off asking for what they deserve for months or even years. The truth is that there's nothing wrong with asking for a raise that represents your hard work, but some tactics and best practices will always produce more remarkable results than others.

It's reasonable to seek a substantial pay raise when you work hard and go above and beyond your job description or surpass your peers. Money is a symbol of your importance to the company, and feeling undervalued can negatively impact your confidence. Asking your boss or supervisor for a raise is an easy way to increase your earnings. Getting them to do so, on the other hand, necessitates meticulous preparation and strategy. When you ask for a raise in the proper way, you can increase your wages while also demonstrating your worth as an employee.


It can be challenging to figure out how to ask for a raise. Many individuals are uncomfortable discussing money, but knowing how to approach your supervisor for a raise is critical when it comes to your career. Simply put, you are rewarded for the work you do, and if you believe you have outgrown your wage by routinely working above and beyond your responsibilities, you have the right to request compensation.


The Dots' founder, Pip Jamieson, says, “No one ever got fired asking for a pay rise! The worst thing that can happen is you just don't get what you ask for”. Companies aren't always in the best position to provide a raise in difficult economic times like these, but that shouldn't stop you from asking. It's more about evaluating your employer's condition and moving forward from there.


Why is knowing how to ask for a pay rise important?

Knowing how to ask for a raise appropriately boosts your chances of getting one. You should request one for a myriad of purposes. For instance, you could:

  • Show initiative at work and go above and beyond.
  • You've discovered that your role has grown.
  • Extra training has been accomplished.
  • Show that you are a dependable employee by meeting deadlines and generating accurate work on a regular basis.
  • Have more experience than you had when you last received a raise
  • Feel that your pay should be in line with the industry standard.

Should you ask for a pay rise?

If you believe you deserve a raise, don't be scared to ask for one – especially if it's been more than a year since you've received one. Corinne Mills of Personal Career Management, a career consultant, says, “Lots of people complain about their salary but do nothing. If you want more money, you need to prepare a business case and approach your manager”. Charles Cotton, a performance and incentive specialist of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD), explains, “In the public sector, most workers see their pay rise through unions agreeing on a deal, or management agreeing to a pay rise”. Employees in the private sector, on the other hand, are more likely to receive a pay rise based on their performance. There are certain exceptions; however, Charles added, “Some local authorities use performance-related pay, so if you’re considered a star performer, you’ll get a higher pay award”.


How to find out whether you are underpaid or not?

Before you meet with your employer, find out how much similar-level coworkers, as well as those in similar roles at similar-sized companies, make. You can then argue that your existing compensation isn't competitive.


The first step is to search for a payment calculator on various job boards or websites like Indeed, Glassdoor, Reed.co.uk, and Monster. It lets you compare average pay for any career or industry in any UK location. Simply input your job title and location to view the average wage for that role, as well as the top and lowest rates based on recent job adverts on the platform. Professional organisations and trade journals, as well as recruitment consultancies, regularly conduct compensation surveys.


Next, look at the various job boards to see what similar roles pay. It's a perfect way to learn what similar positions pay in your area, with over 150,000 opportunities across a wide range of industries. Another useful source of information is specialist recruiting businesses in your industry, and don't forget to look at your company's job adverts to see what similar roles pay.


When it comes to inquiring how much your coworkers are paid, be cautious. Some employment contracts contain a clause prohibiting employees from releasing compensation information to third parties. This is unenforceable if your goal in inquiring is to uncover wage discrimination based on age, gender, or race. Money can be a susceptible subject, so don't be surprised if your coworkers refuse to say how much they make. Even if they do, you should be cautious about utilising it as leverage.


How often can you expect a pay rise in the UK?

Workers in the United Kingdom do not have a legal right to a wage increase every year, even if it is a little increase in accordance with inflation. Instead, it is up to companies to decide whether and when to raise employee pay. Most organisations, however, recognise that in order to keep good staff, they must at least provide incremental raises every 12 months. According to a Mercer annual compensation survey, 90% of employers offer everyone a rise on the same day, once a year. Pay rise may not be determined at the same time for everyone in a smaller company, but it is reviewed annually based on when you started. Every 12 months, you should expect (or request) a pay increase. You'll need a persuasive justification if you want a promotion sooner — for example, your role or responsibilities have changed dramatically. You could be better off advocating for a raise in this case.


A step-by-step guide to getting the pay rise you deserve

Never ask for a raise without first preparing for the conversation. No matter how excellent your connection with your boss is, they will want you to demonstrate that you deserve the raise you're asking for, and they will not be sympathetic if it appears that you didn't prepare.


Knowing your self worth

Consider recent initiatives and periods of time when you went above and beyond the call of duty and added genuine value to your firm. When feasible, use precise performance statistics. Salary calculators are available on several job boards and portals, and they provide information on what people with your job title make in your area. The Salaries tool might be a practical data point in your conversations if your income is below the average for similar workers. Before you do anything else, Pip Jamieson recommends that you figure out how your wage compares to the rest of the market. “There's a myriad of salary surveys out there that can help you benchmark what you should be paid”, she explains. “Simply do a bit of Googling”.


Doing it in person or through video calls.

To discuss your remuneration, schedule a private meeting with your manager. You can request an appointment with your boss in person or via video conferencing. Suggest scheduling a meeting to discuss your performance rather than your compensation, as some employers want to avoid discussing money.


“Don't ask for a pay rise over email", warns Jo Coombs, COO of Publicis Groupe, no matter how appealing it may be and says, “I know it can be difficult to talk about money and your own worth sometimes, but I always respect someone who is prepared to talk to me face to face rather than hide behind email".


Choosing the right time as timing is everything

When you ask for a raise when your boss or supervisor is receptive, you'll have a better chance of getting it. Their excitability will be influenced by a number of factors, including

  • The company's financial health: When a company is financially successful, it is more willing to invest in its personnel. Your company's financial health is presumably healthy if it's recruiting new personnel, obtaining new clients, and expanding.
  • The workload of your manager: A manager with a consistent workload has more time to devote to you and your request than one who is extremely busy.
  • The time of year: If your company conducts annual employee reviews, these meetings are an ideal opportunity to discuss your pay. Another good chance arises with the start of a new fiscal year.
  • Recent accomplishments: Recent accomplishments, such as exceeding a sales target or leading a successful project, can underline your value and persuade your manager to think more positively about your request.
  • Your work progress: Asking for a raise after completing a project is more likely to be effective than asking for a raise in the middle of a significant project. Before you demand a pay rise, finish any pending duties or items on hold.

Writing a script

When writing your script, focus on professional rather than personal motives. Since your manager represents the organisation, benefits to the company are enticing. Instead of using emotional words like 'believe' and 'feel,' which can sound unsure, use confident language and concrete facts. "Prepare a little script ahead of your chat highlighting the value that you bring to the business, how you love what you do, but feel that you're now worth more", says Pip Jamieson, the founder of Dots. Jo Coombs, COO, Publicis Groupe, also suggests, "Prepare for every possible scenario your boss could use not to give you what you want".


Asking for the pay rise

You're ready to ask for a raise as you walk into your boss's office. Take your time delivering the script you've prepared. Maintain eye contact to demonstrate your self-assurance. To engage them and establish your connection, subtly replicate your manager's demeanour and mannerisms. Allow time for your management to respond after you've delivered your proposal. They could be interested in learning more about the accomplishments or initiatives you highlighted. Respond intelligently to their queries, emphasising your positive contributions.


What if it’s a NO

If your employer rejects your proposal for a pay raise by rejecting all raises or agreeing to a smaller raise, asking questions may help you get your ideal income in the future. Enquire about:

  • Desirable talents or accomplishments that would result in a wage raise
  • Their impressions of you as a whole.
  • If so, when would be a good time to bring it up again?

You might also inquire about non-monetary compensation. If a wage raise is not in the budget, your boss may agree to additional job advantages such as the ability to work from home or the use of a company automobile.


Be submissive

Make sure to thank your manager for meeting with you, whether or not they agreed to your wage raise. Thank them in person in the meeting room and then in an email later that day or the next business day if you had an afternoon meeting. In addition to thanking your boss for their time, your email should summarise why you believe you are entitled to a raise and the points you addressed.


Preparation is crucial to feeling more confident; you might even practise with a friend. While asking for a raise can be intimidating, it's an excellent opportunity to demonstrate your effectiveness in your current position.