Human Resources

Negotiating a Raise in a Bad Economy

How to Negotiate a Raise in a Bad Economy

A Recruiter’s Perspective

In the 1990’s negotiating a raise was a lot easier as America saw an economic boom unparalleled to what many job seekers under the age of 50 have seen before. Employees were getting paid more because the high employment rate hurt the supply of job seekers looking to move positions.

In 2012 – 2013, it’s a whole new ball game. Job seekers willing to decline the pay they are currently making can easily be replaced by an abundance of eager job applicants who are currently looking to be employed again.

Therefore, negotiating a raise in a bad economy could be quite complex and there are many factors to consider prior to asking. Below, our Chicago recruiters have included some tips and questions to ask yourself:

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Ken Sundheim is the CEO of the NYC recruiters at KAS Placement.

General Negotiation Tips

Figure out Your Worth – If you are a sales employee, it is a lot easier to determine what your services as an employee may be worth simply because you are directly responsible for a certain amount of sales.

Employees in other departments such as accounting, human resources, B2B marketing (to an extent), management and IT don’t have this luxury. If you are a sales employee and want to determine your worth, our executive recruiters urge you to consider not the revenue you’ve been generating, but to look at the bottom line.

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Don’t Rush It – When negotiating a raise in a bad economy, you must not rush asking for the raise simply because you are short of money or that you feel that you’re working hard for the past few months.

Our executive recruiting team suggests that you take the process with caution and mitigate any risk of your request being declined or, even worse results in you getting laid-off.

2 Key Questions

Before you go and demand money that your employer may not feel is justified, ask yourself the following questions and be honest in your answers. First and foremost, make sure that your relationship with your manager is positive.

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Our recruiters feel that the most important questions are:

1. How Much More Money do you Want? – If you don’t know how much more money you desire, you’re going into the negotiation blind and are less apt to receive the raise that you want. Have a firm number, but be flexible as the economy is quite poor and you don’t want to come across as overly greedy.

2. Can the Firm Afford to Pay Your Required Salary? – You can be doing great, but without your organization being profitable, you’re not going to get a raise. Prior to asking for more money, seriously access the health of your organization.

If your firm is not doing well and is having cash flow problems, they can use your request for a raise as a reason to lay you off. If you feel that your company does not have the money, don’t ask.

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