Is It Time for You to Ask for a Raise?

 

By LISA SWAN

The cost of living—not to mention rent, gas prices, and food costs – keeps on going up, but your salary remains the same. So what can you do? Is it time to talk to your boss about getting a raise? Here are some questions you should ask yourself first before asking for more money:

How long have you been working for the company?

Generally speaking, you need to be there for at least a year before asking for a raise. If you do it any earlier, your boss may look askance at your request.

How good has your work been?

If you get performance evaluations from your company, are you getting great reviews? Are you not just meeting but exceeding your goals? It is not enough to work hard; you need to show have you helped the company’s bottom line by saving the business money, increasing profits, making people’s lives easier, or doing other things that have shown your value to the business.

Have your job responsibilities changed?

If you have been given the equivalent of a promotion, with your job responsibilities getting more advanced, or if you now supervise others, that is something on your side when it comes to asking for more money. You should ask for a raise at the time, but if you cannot get it then, you should ask again when you have proven yourself in the new role.

How is your company doing?

If you are in a struggling business that just had to lay people off to survive, it’s obviously not a good time to ask for a raise, no matter how well you are doing. The same goes if the company is undergoing some sort of corporate restructuring, or is about to be sold. Read the tea leaves around you before asking for a raise.

How much are you making compared to your peers?

You generally are not going to find out how much your co-workers are making, of course. But you can go to sites like Salary.com and GlassDoor.com to see what your peers within your industry are making.  If you are making less than the industry average, your chances of getting more money could be better than if you are already making peak salary for your job.

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