Page last updated at 12:21 GMT, Monday, 3 October 2005 13:21 UK

How to ask for a pay rise

Be ready to haggle with your boss
Be ready to haggle with your boss

Pay rises are notoriously difficult to achieve. Once you have agreed a salary package your boss is unlikely to want to keep showering you with money.

There are, however, two obvious main ways of getting more cash. The first is by getting another job offer and the second is by demonstrating you are doing far more than your contract stipulates.

Most companies can find a bit of extra money to keep star employees, even though you may initially be fobbed off with tales that the firm is already over its annual budget.

Getting a new job offer, though, can be risky. To use an offer as a bargaining tool you must be prepared to leave, so if you are not completely certain that you want the new job but are just attracted by the money you should forget it.

After all, if your current boss turns down your request, your position in the company would be much weaker if you still stayed.

Deft touch

Requesting a pay rise on the back of performance requires planning and a deft touch. Firstly, make a list of your current responsibilities, achievements, workload, and all the positive aspects you have brought to the job.

Decide how much extra money you want - or if you would accept improved terms such as a better car, grander title or shares in the company. Be prepared to haggle. If, for instance, you want a £2,000 pay rise then it may be an idea to ask for £4,000 in the knowledge your boss may meet you around half way.

Tips for negotiation
Be clear about what you want
Have evidence to back up your claims
Be pleasant and confident
Ask for an annual salary review

Request a private word. When you are called in, thank your boss for his time and then get straight to the point. Say how much you enjoy the job and briefly run through your achievements. Then let him or her know what you are after.

Success will come down to the way you approach your boss and the amount of money that is available. Come across as confident without being cocky. If they refuse to meet your demands try and arrange a time when your position can be reviewed again.

Remember that many bosses are unlikely to give you any extra reward simply for doing your job well - that's what you're paid to do.

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