How Should I Negotiate for a Higher Salary?

Garry Crystal

A higher salary is something that every worker wants. Having a salary higher than your initial salary is expected within at least one year of starting a job. In some jobs, salary negotiations may take place at the initial interview stage. In other jobs, you may be expected to negotiate a higher salary when either you or the employer feels the time is right. There are some tips and techniques that may lead to a successful salary negotiation.

Salary negotiations sometimes take place after initial hire or during the first year of work.
Salary negotiations sometimes take place after initial hire or during the first year of work.

The first step is to inform your employer that you wish to talk to him or her about the matter of your salary. This should be done in a non-confrontational way, and the request can be made either in person or by email. If the employer is open to your request, then he or she may think that salary negotiation is a viable topic for discussion.

An employee can negotiate a higher salary after passing a certification exam.
An employee can negotiate a higher salary after passing a certification exam.

If you feel you are due a higher salary, make sure you do your research. Check out similar job salaries to yours. Find out how much a person who is doing the same job as you is earning at various other companies. You can use this information both as a guide and as a bargaining tool.

Make a list of the reasons why you feel you deserve a higher salary. These could include changes within your job role. You may have been given more work than was originally specified at your initial interview, for example. Your job may now include training other staff. You may feel that your work has contributed a profit to the company that would not have happened without you.

Your skills may also be a factor when negotiating a higher salary. You may have taken training or educational courses either within or outside of the company. These extra skills you have gained should be brought up in negotiations and viewed in the context of your current or future job roles.

Be realistic in your salary expectations. Your current job may have a lot of benefits, such as a medical plan. These benefits may not be available within other companies and should be considered part of your salary. Some companies' benefit plans are worth thousands above the actual monetary salary, and this may be brought up by employers during negotiations.

Negotiations are all about both parties feeling as if they have gained in some way. By not focusing specifically on money, you leave yourself open to wider negotiations. These can include future job roles and promotion within the company. When negotiating a higher salary, stay calm and in control of the situation. Your employer has taken you seriously enough to negotiate and will be interested in what you have to say.

Once an offer has been made, take time to think it over, and think long-term. Do not jump in at the first pay raise mentioned. If the negotiation has been successful for both parties, make sure that it is set down in writing.

The biggest factor for employees asking for a higher salary is fear of rejection. If you have done your research and know that you deserve a higher salary, then negotiations are warranted. The employer can either say yes or no. If the answer is no, then it may be time to take your skills to someone who will appreciate them more.

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Discussion Comments


My advice is to make sure you've actually accomplished the goals you plan on mentioning during raise negotiations. Your boss probably has ways of measuring your work output, and he or she will not appreciate any exaggerations or lackluster numbers. Unless pay raises are automatically built into the system, I would suggesting waiting to negotiate a higher salary until you have the momentum of a proven track record behind you.

Also keep in mind that many middle managers are caught between two worlds. Upper management may stress the need for financial restraint, meaning employee raises may be few and far between. Employees seek fair compensation for their work and recognition of their accomplishments. This means the manager needs to reward deserving employees with pay raises. It's a difficult position to be in, so expect the default setting to be "no", at least at first.


I am so thankful for this article. I am pretty useless at any kind of bargaining, so was in real need of a guide on how to negotiate salary.

My annual review is coming up next week, and I now feel more confident about mentioning my achievements in the last year. To be sure I don't lose my nerve I will gather evidence and present everything in a nice folder. Wish me luck!


In my company the average salary is the same for pretty much everyone when they first start. Increases are pretty much automatic, so long as you meet the criteria.

Because I work in sales everyone's personal results are public knowledge, and those who make more are rewarded with a higher pay rate.

When it comes to how to negotiate a higher salary there's no question. You produce the results and you step over over those who will get nothing. It aounds harsh but it's the way of the business.

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