Is it time to ask for a salary increase? 5 steps to a successful salary review

James Lawson

May 05, 2023

Is it time to ask for a salary increase? 5 steps to a successful salary review


Are you being paid what you're worth? Asking for a salary increase or other benefits from your existing employer can be a nerve-wracking experience, but with the right approach, a salary review it can also be a rewarding one. It's time to step up and advocate for your value!

Where to begin? Attaining a salary review with a positive outcome can be broken down into five simple steps that we've listed below:

1. Research the market value of your skills

The first part of knowing how to negotiate salary is researching what your skills and experience are worth on average in your industry. Find out the going rates for similar roles in similar kinds of companies, as this will let you benchmark your current salary. The closer you are to the average, the greater the need to demonstrate why you are worth more than the going rate. (If you work in the Procurement, Supply Chain, Logistics & Transport, Buying or HR specialisms why not check our 2023 Salary Benefits & benchmarking Guide for our 2023 salary ranges.)

Also prepare to promote and sell yourself in your salary review all over again to your employer, building on all the reasons why they hired you in the first place.

2. Manage your expectations

To avoid the disappointment, you need to ensure that your expectations are realistic. This doesn’t mean that you can’t be ambitious though. Before starting any conversation with your manager or with HR, you should prepare a salary range with an ideal maximum that you can justify and a realistic minimum that you think you’re worth.

3. Demonstrate your value

Knowing how to ask for a salary increase means taking into account all of your contributions to date which you feel have contributed to the growth and success of the company. This is about demonstrating your value to the firm for the person you are, beyond just your basic role requirements. You should provide as many tangible examples of your work benefiting the company as possible.

Of course, for some roles finding direct contributions can be difficult, but there are other factors you can highlight. New skills learned and certifications achieved, an exemplary attendance record, and a reliably consistent performance are all aspects that can contribute to your value as an employee. Also, highlight any examples where you have shown a willingness to go above and beyond your job description or role responsibilities to the benefit of your company.

4. Be prepared for counteroffers

Of course, it may be that your employer does not agree with the salary increase you are looking for, or is constrained within company salary structures. If you receive an offer lower than your request, knowing the minimum range you are willing to accept in advance will guide your next step. While it might be that an increased salary isn't possible, there are other benefits your employer could offer that might appeal, for example, more flexible working arrangements, an uncapped holiday allowance, a company car etc. You can then consider if any other benefits offered in lieu of an increased salary are sufficient recompense.

If you are unsure about the offer your employer has made, you should take your time to consider it and then if you still don’t feel it reflects your value then you should explain your knowledge of the going rate for your role to demonstrate why you are asking for the increase. Make sure to do your research in preparation for your salary review so you can back up your points.

5. Get it in writing

Having a written confirmation can help prevent any misunderstandings or miscommunications that may arise during this process. It can also help to clarify any details that may have been discussed but not fully understood by either party. By having written confirmation, you can be confident that the terms of your compensation package are clear and accurately reflect what was agreed upon.

Knowing how to ask for a salary increase and benefits is an essential skill in any career. By following these steps and approaching the topic with confidence, you can increase your chances of improving your salary & benefits package to everyone’s satisfaction.

Are you looking for up-to-date information regarding salary ranges?

View our 2023 Salary and Benefits guide here to discover key salary benchmarks & benefits offered in the Procurement, Supply Chain, Buying, Supply Chain & HR specialisms.