When you first start out in your career, you might be making the same amount as all those other entry-level employees. However, as the years accumulate and your experience grows, salaries can diverge wildly, even for those with similar backgrounds. So how can you ensure you’re being paid fairly?
#1: Look for job openings similar to yours.
Check our job boards and employer career sites in search of openings that are similar to your position. Not all postings will offer salaries and some will give a range. However, you should be able to gather enough data – especially on industry-specific job boards – that you gain a better sense of whether or not your salary falls in line with current opportunities.
#2: Leverage online tools.
There are many different calculators you can use online to gauge your salary. Once you enter information, such as your job title, location and current salary, you’ll be able to see where you stack up. Some examples of tools to use include Glassdoor’s Know Your Worth, Salary Wizard, Payscale’s What Am I Worth, and LinkedIn Salary. There are also industry-specific tools you can use, like Dice’s Salary Calculator if you’re an IT professional.
#3: Review general salary surveys.
Salary surveys offer an overview of the median or average compensation for employees in similar jobs. Data is typically collected through traditional mail, email, and online questionnaires. While often more broad in nature, these can give additional insight into whether your salary and the going rate are competitive.
#4: Ask a trusted co-worker.
You probably don’t want to go around asking all your co-workers what they’re earning. However, if you have a close friend at work in a role similar to yours, it’s worth having a conversation. If they don’t want to go into details, then offer them a range of what you’re paid and see if their salary is similar.
#5: Be sure to factor in benefits.
You might think you’re being underpaid. However, before you make that assumption, factor in the cost of your benefits and perks, too. For instance, you could be paid less salary than a counterpart at a competing company, but have a more generous health insurance package enabling you to actually take home more money.
#6: Talk to your boss.
If you, after your research, you find out your salary isn’t where it should be, schedule a conversation with your boss. Be prepared with all your findings, as well as a list of accomplishments and contributions you’ve made. Then make the case as to why you deserve a raise.
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