Professional asking for a pay rise


Most people who have been in a permanent role in the membership sector or membership-focused organisations for any length of time will have developed their role and responsibilities beyond their original job description. The industry is such that relationship building and knowledge of the organisation are key. As such, your experience in your membership organisation will probably have caused you to expand your role considerably.

If this is you and you feel that it’s time your salary reflected your increased duties, you might be concerned that the current economic climate is not the right time to ask but approaching the request in the right way and you might find that you will get a positive response. Follow our 5-step guide for the best results for requesting a pay rise for your permanent role.

1. Do your research

Before you do anything else - make sure you are aware of the market value of your role. Check out our Salary Guide for all the latest market rate advice for permanent membership sector roles. The guide covers all roles within trade associations, professional bodies, and regulatory bodies.

2. Use facts, not emotions

Build a business case for your pay rise request and include:

  • Any added responsibilities that you have gained or built up over your time in the role.
  • Any training that you have completed over and above the basics for your job that has increased your qualifications.
  • Anything you have introduced to the business or department, e.g. new software or new processes. Be able to demonstrate how they have saved time or money, attracted clients, or increased membership or engagement with your membership.
  • All departmental targets that you have reached and exceeded.
  • What do YOU bring to the role? Known as soft skills, these are the things you bring that are uniquely you. For example, the relationships you have built during your time in the role. In a membership-based organisation, the relationships you have built and the knowledge you have of the members can be the results of years of non-transferable work.

3. Time your request

Ideally, you should time your request to fit in with your annual appraisal or during the company’s budget setting for the following year. If this is not possible, ask for a meeting of at least half an hour with your manager. Monster advises that you “avoid mentioning pay when you book the meeting to minimise the chances of it being put off.” To maximise your chances of success, try not to ask for the meeting during a time of stressful deadlines or high workload.

4. Treat the meeting like a job interview

You should be selling yourself in the same way as you would when applying for a new job. Makes notes to prompt all the points you want to make and have accurate statistics and figures where relevant. Think about your language – don’t undermine yourself by downplaying your achievements or your request. For example, don’t lead with, “I understand if this can’t be done right now, but… ” or “this might seem like a minor achievement.” Stress how invaluable your connection with, or knowledge, of the membership has become and maximise the importance of the development of your connection with them, whether this is direct or indirect.

5. Follow up

Follow the meeting up with an email re-outlining your request and all the points you have made.

What next? 

Remember that even if you follow all the steps above, your request might still be turned down. If this is the case, bear in mind the following:

1. Don’t take it personally. The company might simply not be able to afford it right now. You will still have shown that you are serious about your future and aware of your own worth. A good manager will have this in mind in any future development.

2. Make sure you take any alternative offers seriously. They might offer you benefits, perks or on-the-job training, and this can be just as valuable as a pay rise.

3. If an increased salary really is a non-negotiable factor for you, do take a look at our jobs page for any alternative opportunities.

Hopefully, you have found these tips to be useful, and if we can help you in any way, please get in touch.