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Negotiating Your Worth: How to Ask for a Pay Rise

  • Posted 06 May 2024
  • Richard Holmes
  • Article

Asking for a raise can feel daunting, but with preparation and the right approach, you can confidently advocate for your value.

This guide will equip you with the knowledge of when to ask, what to gather, and how to communicate effectively to increase your chances of a successful negotiation.

Timing is Key: Choosing the Right Moment

  • After Achievements: Did you land a new deal, exceed targets, or spearhead a successful project? Capitalise on these wins and request a meeting soon after to discuss your contributions.
  • Performance Review Success: Following a positive performance review is a natural time to discuss compensation. It demonstrates your alignment with company goals and strengthens your case.
  • Company Prosperity: When the company performs well financially, it suggests a more significant budget for raises. However, avoid asking during times of hardship.

Building Your Case: Evidence of Your Value

  • Quantifiable Achievements: Gather data to showcase your contributions. Increased sales figures, improved metrics, or positive client feedback all add weight to your request.
  • Exceeding Expectations: Highlight instances where you exceeded your job description. Did you take on additional responsibilities or develop new skills?
  • Market Research: Know your industry's salary benchmarks for your position and experience level. This will equip you with a realistic target to raise and strengthen your argument.

The Art of the Ask: How to Effectively Negotiate

  • Schedule a Meeting: Schedule a dedicated meeting with your manager to discuss your salary. This shows seriousness and allows for a focused conversation.
  • Confidence is Key: Approach the conversation with confidence and professionalism. Be clear and concise in your communication.
  • Focus on Value: Frame the conversation around the value you bring to the company. Use your prepared evidence to demonstrate the positive impact of your work.
  • Be Open to Negotiation: Be prepared to discuss a raise within a reasonable range. Be open to alternative forms of compensation if a raise isn't immediately possible.
  • Get it in Writing: If you reach an agreement, ensure everything is documented in writing. This confirms the details of the raise and avoids misunderstandings.

By following these steps, you can approach your request for a raise with a strong foundation and increase your chances of a successful outcome. 

Negotiation is a conversation, so be prepared to listen to your manager's perspective and be open to finding a mutually beneficial agreement.


Richard Holmes is Co-Founder and Director of HPR Consulting, Sydney's 5-star-rated Accounting and finance recruitment agency. A passionate matchmaker, he has placed hundreds of senior finance professionals in leading ASX-listed, private, and multinational organisations since 2006.

Richard deeply understands the Sydney market and has a proven track record in executive finance search and selection. Whether you're an organisation seeking top talent or a professional aiming for your next big step, Richard's passion for connecting people will drive your success.

Reach out at richardh@hprconsulting.com or call on 0403 513 720.


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