Various surveys have shown that as much as 40 percent of employees believe that they are underpaid and that their co-workers are earning much more than them.
If you truly believe you’re not making what you’re worth, or wonder how much you’re making compared to co-workers, you may want to consider asking your boss for a raise.
Without directly asking your co-workers, here are some ways you can gauge how much your co-workers are earning at the same company.
Check Job Opportunities On Your Company’s website
If there are multiple positions like yours at the company, the job description is most probably similar and if the salary is higher, that’s one of the most obvious signs. You should however not check out what a similar job pays; but explore lower-level jobs within your company as well.
Doing this allows you to explore what new, younger, or less experienced employees are being paid, and to gauge if that feels reasonable compared to your level of experience and role in the company.
Keep Abreast Of Your Company Revenue
If your company is private, it may be harder for you to measure revenue growth as opposed to if it is a public company. But if your company’s revenue has taken off and your salary has barely increased, chances are some co-workers have received raises and/or bonuses and you have not.
Take note if co-workers on the same level as you seem to take extra vacation days or are being praised by the bosses in company. This could also be a sign they recently received a salary increase.
Talk To Your Co-workers—Carefully
You probably know which colleagues you are closest to and consider to be a friend outside the office. You should however be careful and not be too trusting. Never ask someone you barely know or you will look very unprofessional. Instead, trust your gut about who you can ask directly.
You can say something like “we are not supposed to talk about compensation, but do you think we could share with each other what our base is or give a range?’” If the co-worker in question hesitates or seems uncomfortable, drop it. And if you do get the info, be ready to share your own salary in exchange.
Engage Someone in HR
If you are friendly with someone in human resources and you’re comfortable speaking with them, ask them about other positions in your company. Be friendly and open when you’re inquiring, and don’t admit you feel unvalued and want a raise.
Explain that you’re curious what entry-level jobs pay compared to when you first started out in the field; or simply state you may be interested in applying for a more senior position in the company and wonder what the salary range is.
Be Informed Of The Job Market
If you read an article, for example, that states a high-tech computer program that you are an expert at is crucial, you can use it as a leverage to know what your co-workers earn when approaching your boss.
That way, you are justified for a salary increase since it is professionally “backed up” by an industry outsider.