How to negotiate a pay rise

Written by: Joshua Palmer
Published on: 24 Jul 2019

Cobalt Recruitment

Want to be better remunerated but not sure how to approach your boss about it? Joshua Palmer, senior consultant - town planning, at Cobalt Recruitment, offers advice to help you get the pay rise you deserve.

Pay rise

Know your worth

Do you know the highest potential salary you could be earning for your role? How do your company’s remuneration packages generally compare to those of other similar companies in the planning industry? It pays to do your research. Look up salary reports to benchmark your salary against the industry average but bear in mind there will be variations across different regions and organisation types and sizes. Browse planning job adverts to compare the salaries of similar roles to yours along with the responsibilities and prerequisites. 

Does your research indicate you could be earning a lot more elsewhere? Talk to friends in the industry and recruiters to get their advice too as this can give you some additional reassurance and confidence in asking for a pay rise, as well as an indication of how much more you could bargain for.

List your achievements

Before you actually approach your boss to ask for a pay rise, you need to build a business case for it. Start by making a list of all the key things you’ve achieved in your time at the company so far, what you still want to achieve, the amount of work you have put in and why that results in you wanting a salary increase. You need to convince them that the more they invest in you, the more you will invest in them.

When you present your case to your boss, be sure to highlight the successful projects you’ve been involved in, drawing attention to quantifiable data, such as figures and timeframes - remind them about all the great results you’ve achieved to further demonstrate the value you bring to the business so they realise how they’d struggle without you.

Be prepared to negotiate

Have in mind the minimum you would accept, as well as the top figure you’d ideally like - you don’t have to accept their first offer and you can go back with a compromise, perhaps meet them halfway if necessary. If their answer is that there is simply no budget or that it’s not a good time for a pay review, then it’s a good time to ask to schedule a pay review for a time they recommend would be best. That way you will demonstrate you are serious about it and will be expecting an increase when the pay review date comes around.

Also, think about other benefits beyond salary that you would like. If a pay increase simply isn’t possible at this time, or you’re not going to get as much as you’d hoped, is there something else you’d be happy with instead (that is also feasible) such as alternative / flexible working arrangements, shorter hours for the same pay or a performance related bonus? Having a few ideas up your sleeve will help you ace the negotiation so that you go away with something you’re happy with and leaves you still feeling valued by your employer.

On the other hand if you’re considering new career opportunities in town planning, check out these job vacancies from Cobalt Recruitment.

Explore planning jobs with Cobalt Recruitment