As the cost of living crisis continues to leave families out of pocket thanks to real terms pay cuts, asking for a pay rise is not an uncommon practice. While average wages have been increasing, they haven’t been rising as fast as the cost of living, meaning many households may be struggling to get by.

Asking for a pay rise can be extremely stressful and anxiety inducing, and there’s no guarantee you’ll get one. However, Connor Campbell, business finance expert at NerdWallet has shared some tips on how to confidently ask for a pay rise to give you the best chance.

Time it right

“The key thing about successfully receiving a pay rise is ensuring that you request one at the right time. While there’s no time like the present for struggling employees, your chances of success will increase drastically if you wait for the perfect opportunity.

“First, you should ensure that the business you work for is doing well financially, meaning you’ll have the best chance of negotiating more pay.

“You should also plan the conversation in advance. You should be upfront and warn your line manager that you want to have a conversation about pay. This gives you and your manager time to prepare for the conversation which is likely to lead to a productive conversation.”

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Be confident

“Know your worth when asking for a pay rise, and be confident with the belief that you’re worth the pay rise. Despite the fact that it’s an intimidating situation, this will show employers that you have self-worth regarding the tireless effort you put in.

“Be prepared for some pushback and know that the answer could be no, but this shouldn’t mean you lose confidence. There is a stigma around talking about pay, but it’s the most crucial part of working.”

Bring evidence

“Having evidence on why you might deserve a pay rise is another key to increasing your chances of successfully getting one.

“Keep in mind the things that you’ve achieved in your role and look back at how you’ve developed in your role, as well as how you’ve assisted your colleagues and your managers. Essentially, you should list all the positives in your role and the pros that point towards why you deserve a pay rise.

“When speaking to your manager, having reasons why you deserve a pay rise helps the manager rationalise why you deserve one. You should also look ahead and keep in mind what you plan to do next in your role in order to develop further.”

What’s in it for the employers?

“The reason why you personally might need a pay rise isn’t always enough to persuade your managers to give you one. The managers want to be persuaded by what’s in it for them rather than just for you personally.

“If they’re convinced your pay rise will be beneficial to them too, the likelihood increases. Think about how you will benefit the business and how you can make your manager’s work easier by being a productive and motivated employee that won’t let them down.”

Don’t be disheartened

“If the answer is ultimately no, don’t let it knock your confidence. It might take months to convince your employers to give you a pay rise, but just because the answer is a no at first it doesn’t mean you’re not worth one.

“There could be many factors as to why a company can not offer you a pay rise at the time of asking. It could be a difficult time for the business, money might be tight, or maybe you're just not at the right stage in your career development. Be sure to ask why if the answer is no.

“Whatever the reason, you should still be confident about deserving one. Keep in mind the reasons your manager gave for not giving you one and go above and beyond to prove you’re worthy of it.”