Proactive approach – Salary Raise

Salary hike or raise is always a very touchy topic for employees. If you talk to them most of them will not be very happy with the raise or hike they get. Many people asked this question about salary hike – Can we ask HR or our bosses for salary hike?? If yes then how?

Most HR people will say it is not a good idea to ask for a raise, why not wait for the appraisal cycle?

But there are many companies where the raise is not restricted to happen only during appraisal cycle, it is also linked to the performance in a project, some specific assignment, special achievements and so on and so forth.

It’s certainly not an easy subject to touch upon, whether it’s with your HOD or your HR manager. What’s the best way to tackle the situation? How do you plan the interaction in the best possible way?

Rajeshwar Tripathi, executive VP-HRs, Farm Equipment, Mahindra & Mahindra says, “It’s not often that people would apply for a raise; however, if they do, it should be considered more as a feedback from them and then, process it while formulation of their compensation plan.”

There are several ways of applying for a raise and organisations could handle the requests differently. “Individual raise requests are rare and they only happen while hiring or in case the person has quit and we plan to re-hire them. It’s best to ask and appreciate feedback of the employees and how they perceive their compensation; this is the healthiest form of dealing with the subject. HR can then do benchmarking at various levels of performance, the industry paying standards and then, arrive on a compensation plan,” says Tripathi.

Lastly, it’s always better to gather some support for your cause instead of you hooting for yourself all alone.

“Rather than walking straight to the CEO/HR’s cabin; it will be a good idea to first take your HOD in confidence of your intention and once he/she supports you, there are better chances of you getting the hike when he/she escalates it to the senior officials. In short, make your plea for raise very objective, professional and make a fact-based request rather than an overly emotional, impulsive or immature demand,” adds Meghna Dixit, VP and group head-HR & OD, Maya Entertainment Limited.

So you feel you deserve a pay hike but yet don’t know how to go about it? Does it have to be over email or a formal meeting is required?

Do you need to follow a procedure? What’s the deal? Although it’s fair for you to let HR be aware of your feelings and feedback, you don’t want to end up rubbing them the wrong way.

“Asking the HOD or HR for a raise on the grounds that you will resign or not multi-task without a raise is a bad idea as it most often snubs the HOD in a wrong way. One might get some hike or commitment at that moment but in the long run, such employees are replaced easily. Similarly, asking for a raise within less than 9-12 months from last increment is not just greedy but against most company rules,” says Dixit.

So when is it really fine to ask for a raise? And how do you go about it?

“One can ask for a raise in the week after the last big success, breakthrough and innovation that one brought about and was recognised by the HOD/HR. The request should sound like a request with all humility. Rather than asking for a 25 per cent hike, one can say ‘I am looking for a 20-30 per cent hike and growth prospects in the company as I feel I am delivering my tasks as expected’,” concludes Dixit.

So ask for a raise, but go prepared. Don’t make any decision in hassled manner, it’s always better to inform your HOD and take his/her support. Also it is very important to keep in mind the dates of last appraisal or hike as the gap between the two should not looks very greedy to your HOD/HR. Another imperative aspect is to benchmark your salary within the industry as well as outside to know exactly where you stand and what is it that one can demand.

  • CA Vinay Garg

    Good Article.

    However, I have a question.
    Can this be followed while working in MNC since they follow their strict rules only and provide increment at appraisal only?

  • We usually make mistakes in understanding/forecasting the usual hike in the salary. We should keep in mind the repercussions of salary hike or no hike for that matter. We should nderstand the logics of the employees and employers including the competitions within the organisation and elsewhere. Before a person may intend to leave the orgaiisation or ask for a change in the salary/package we should be prepared with the logics or declare the hike as it may be from the the point of view of HR practices.

    Yeildig to undue pressure or not giving the due may imbalance the organisation for its future growth and also raising the confidence level in the employees.

    Employess are more precious than any other thing in the orgainisation.

    KGS Chauhan
    Personnel Officer, SGI