Salary Increase Letters: What Are They?

Salary increase letters are a formal documentation of an employee’s pay raise request. The process for a salary request takes a longer time to complete. It involves negotiations and serious discussions amongst the higher-ups. It is not a guarantee you will get a raise the moment you send your letter to your managers. The letter also serves as a piece of record documenting salary-related requests that may be currently denied but can be considered in the near future. A pay raise letter should be addressed to the people in the company who takes care of bonuses. This can be your immediate supervisor, department head, or manager. It is not advisable to demand a lot. Keep your request reasonable. Don’t go above the person in the position, especially when this person is in charge of salary decisions. The letter will keep things professional even if you have no confidence in your supervisor or manager.    

The coronavirus pandemic last year hit a lot of industries. Many have temporarily or permanently shut down. Despite the global pandemic, wages and salaries are pretty equitable and decent. According to a report by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, compensation costs for private industry workers improved by 2.6% over the year. There was a 2.7% increase in December 2019. Wages and salaries shot up by 2.8 % percent over a 12-month period ending in December 2020 and surged by 3.0 % in December 2019. The benefit costs climbed by 2.1 % for the 12-month period ending in December 2020 and rose by 1.9% in December 2019. 

Components of a Salary Raise Letter

No pay increase request letters should be identical, but there are things you should consider in making one. Here are some elements of a pay raise request letter that you should include:

Purpose of the Letter: Be straightforward. Be direct with your intentions. State the letter’s purpose—you’re writing in hopes of getting a salary increase so mention that fact from the get-go. Address the length of time you have worked at the company and the position you have. A piece of information about your tenureship can be helpful in obtaining a raise, and mention how you enjoyed working with them. This will give the reader of the letter a look through your lens; it shows a perspective. The Objective of the Request: Whether the company is doing well in terms of generating sales revenue or you were given more responsibilities for you to ask for a salary raise, bring them into the discussion. Whatever reasons that apply to your situation that motivated you to request a raise, state them in the letter. Grounds for Receiving a Salary Increase: This section of the letter is a combination of justification for receiving a salary increase and the objectives of the request. Mention your notable accomplishments at the company to justify why you deserve a raise and the value you bring to the organization. Include your latest achievements that happened after your last salary raise. Another convincing proof or a good justification for you to deserve a raise are the awards the company granted you in the past. This will help you build a strong case for your request to be approved. State your salary data to justify your case for being underpaid. Present undisputed evidence.Desired Salary: Don’t beat around the bush, and don’t keep the management guessing what you want and how much you want. State your desired salary. Request for a percentage raise or a fixed amount. However, don’t demand a lot. Keep your demand as reasonable as possible. Utilize your salary data research to establish a decent figure.Negotiations: Don’t give an impression of being demanding. State in your letter that you are willing to find a fair solution to settle your demands. Expression of Gratitude for the Consideration: Stay civil and professional. In a high-level professional environment or in any working environment, it pays to be diplomatic. It never hurts to respect people as well as appreciate them for their consideration. End the letter with a thank-you to show appreciation to the management for considering your request for a salary increase.

How to Write a Salary Increase Letter

Writing a salary increase letter is not an easy task. Here are some tips that can help you write a succinct raise request email:

Step 1: Perform a Salary Data Research

It will not get you anywhere when the salary you ask for is not harmonious with the state of the current labor market. Be realistic and keep your expectations in check. Conducting your own salary research will make you grasp the salary range someone in your position deserves to have. The geographic location is also one of the factors that influences the salary an employee receives. To determine your appropriate wage, you can refer to salary guides that categorize starting rate ranges for many diverse positions and industries. Doing your own research on realistic salary ranges can help you show your employer that your raise request is based on cold hard facts.

Step 2: Choose the Right Timing

One of the most important things in determining if you are likely to get a salary increase is by knowing the perfect time to bring the matter into the discussion. Keep yourself aware of your company’s cycle and policies. If your company has a scheme of granting salary raise requests only during a particular time like performance evaluation periods; then, keep that in mind. Put it in your calendar. In other companies, the time of the year they grant a pay raise does not really matter but other companies tend to follow specific schedules. Moreover, have some situational awareness. In trying times like a coronavirus pandemic where there’s a hiring freeze, reduced company sales, lesser job promotions, and higher retrenchments, there is a smaller chance to get a salary raise because almost every company anywhere in the world right now are struggling. If not, they take preventive measures from experiencing bankruptcy.

Step 3: Do the Salary Raise Request

Make the request once you’re already done with the salary data research and have picked the perfect time to ask for one. Communicate your thoughts with your manager, and mention that you want a review of your salary and benefits. Outline the improvements in your performance in your present role. Never mention your personal reasons for seeking a higher wage. Keep everything professional while writing your merit increase letter in a concise manner.   

Step 4: Back up Your Request

Provide data to back up your claims for asking a specific amount and how you managed to come up with that salary figure. Mention your professional accomplishments and accolades as well as the added responsibilities you assumed to convince your employers you deserve to get a raise. Job performance and work ethic are important because the wage you get must correspond with the value you bring to the company. Delivery of satisfactory results when taking on any task, maximum productivity, years of experience, and overall excellent job performance can convince employers to grant you the salary increase you have always wanted. 

Step 5: Offer Gratitude for the Consideration 

Always thank your manager for the support he offers in your position and for considering the favor you asked. What you must bear in mind is that you need to have tons of patience. Things like this take time. The process for getting a salary increase may not always be smooth and seamless as you would expect. Your manager has to bring this into conversation with the people in the top-level management. Negotiations and agreements on this take a while to have fruition. It is going to be a long process before your manager can get back to you. 

FAQs

Why put a pay raise request in writing?

It should be put in writing to present formal documentation of what you asked from the management. This is not to say that you cannot have a face-to-face conversation with your manager about this beforehand, but the letter serves as a way to formalize your communication with your employers. A properly formatted and well-written letter gives you chance to show to your bosses that you are serious with your request.

To whom should you submit your salary increase letter?

Send your letter to anyone in the company that takes care of salary raises, salary decisions, bonuses, and the like. It can be your immediate supervisor, HR manager, HR representative, or your manager. If you are in the dark to whom you need to address your letter, you can ask help from the HR department to further assist you with the process.

What are the things you cannot include in the letter?

Don’t include in the letter any personal reasons for needing lots of money. Don’t complain about anything since the company also goes through a lot like retrenchments, deductions in sales, and layoffs, especially in the time of a pandemic or any crisis it is facing. Do not compare and use the salary rates of other employees as references and reasons for wanting a raise. Keep things professional and be self-motivated. Focus on the value you can bring to the organization, not what you can gain from them.

When is the perfect time to send a salary increase letter?

When the company is going well and generating more sales; then, it’s the right time to ask for a raise. When it’s time for layoffs like what happened in the midst of a pandemic, it is rather an unwise decision to demand a pay raise. If and when you have been assuming more responsibilities, you had your last raise for over a year, you are underpaid, and periods of performance evaluation are also the best times to request an increase.

What are other instances to ask for a salary increase?

Make sure that it’s the perfect timing if you are going to request an increment. You can definitely ask for it when your company is financially sound. If you have been a dedicated employee who has worked very hard, you also get an opportunity for a salary increase. If and when you are entitled to ask for one, you need to know how to write a professionally written raise request letter. It should be properly formatted, pertinent, and concise.

Why you shouldn’t complain in the letter?

Nobody wants to work and associate themselves with an individual who keeps whining, especially in a professional setting. The things you put in writing will reflect your image as an employee, and it will affect your company’s reputation. You are a representative of your organization so act accordingly. Always keep things professional. Maintain diplomacy and courtesy even through the written word.

Keeping a job is sometimes tiring and it can get us demotivated, especially when we are underpaid. Reaping the rewards of one’s labor keeps anyone going. Basically, all employees desire a salary raise. This subject can be discussed with a manager beforehand, but the purpose of a salary increase email is to formalize the communication. Requesting a pay raise is not only hard, but it is risky when you don’t know how to say the right things. A salary increase letter helps you justify your request while maintaining professionalism and courtesy. A raise letter template will complete the job. Download now!