The 5 Best Times to Ask for a Raise

By Chelsea Babin

With good timing and the right reasons asking for a raise can be a lot easier than you may expect. Want your next request for a raise to go much smoother? These are the 5 best times to ask for one.

1. Annual Review: The most traditional time to ask for a raise in a company that does annual reviews is during your annual review. Because some companies have this set up for the purpose of doling out raises, this is a great time to ask for one and prove why your worth has increased enough to deserve one.

2. After Consistently Taking on More Responsibility: No, lending a hand to one coworker’s project one time does not necessarily deserve a raise but if you’re regularly taking on more responsibility than you ever have before you may consider asking for a raise. As your role within the company shifts and you become more valuable to that organization it’s only natural to ask that your compensation match your ever-increasing value.

3. When You Hit Large Skill Benchmarks: If you’ve learned several new technologies and applied those in your job or if you’ve received relevant certification or degrees this may be a great time to ask for a raise! You’ve increased your skill value and, if those skills are going to help you contribute to the company in new ways, it’s reasonable to ask that your compensation reflect that increased value.

4. Cost of Living Increases: Some companies don’t have a system for regular raises and, if you’ve been with the company for several years in the same role without getting a raise, it may be a good time to ask for cost of living raises. Factoring in inflation, rising apartment costs, rising gas prices, rising grocery bills and more, life simply gets more expensive to live every year regardless of whether or not you’re inflating your own life style. Some companies offer these regular 3% raises as cost of living increases anyways but, if yours doesn’t, you can make a case for a raise using this method. However, remember that it’s always more likely and more effective to ask for a raise when you’ve increased your value at the company.

5. Moving Up: As a company expands or as you grow into a new position you may want to consider asking for a raise. Whether you’re being promoted, the company is taking on exponentially more projects, or you’ve naturally transitioned into a leadership role you’ll find that moving up with or within an organization is a great time to ask for a raise.

Wanting a raise is natural, especially if you’re getting better at your job, learning new skills, and moving up within the company. If you ask for a raise it’s more likely that you’ll get it if you ask at the right time. Try to schedule your next raise request for one of these 5 times and you’ll see how easy and natural the process can be when it’s timed correctly!