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More work, same pay?

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Question: I have a friend who is being given more responsibilities at work but is still being given the same pay. He has been with his job for 4 years and has not been given a pay raise. Do you all have any suggestions about whom he should contact? Should he talk with his boss about the situation?

I believe that his boss wants to get all that she can get from him and not pay him any more money. If he is so bad, why does she keep him around?  -- Anonymous


At our office, we get a review once a year (our anniversary date) and the boss gives us negatives and positives and we always get a raise. I'm not sure if reviews are given in your friend's office he can ask his boss (the one who gives and sees his work) for one at the end of the following week. Seems that your friend does a great job to be given more work. After the review, he can simply say that since he sees that he goes beyond what is expected and takes on more and more responsibility than he would like to talk about a pay raise. See what the response is. If it's a complete "no" then maybe he should explore other options.

Depending on when your next review might be (if your company does individual reviews), I might be inclined to sit down and speak with your boss now. Don't wait another 6 months or so. Just let your boss know that you enjoy working at the company and accept the new challenges of doing more work with added responsibilities, and you would like to discuss a salary increase.

I agree with the previous person, that if the answer becomes a "no" with no explanation, I too might consider looking for another position elsewhere.

Also, make sure your company does not have ceilings on salaries for certain level jobs. If they do, this might be something you will have to consider should you decide to stay.

At one point in my career I had this exact problem. He will need to make sure he makes a case in order to get a pay raise or category change. I first went to personnel and found out pay scales and duties for like positions. I then asked several other key personnel their pay scale range (not their pay) and their duties. I then took that information and made a report comparing my current salary and job duties with other like pay scales and job duties. I then scheduled an appointment with my boss and presented the information. My boss told me there was nothing he could do. I then asked if I could present the information to the Board and my boss gave me his blessing along with the comment that nothing will change. Well, I did present the information and I told the Board I would honor whatever decision they made on this matter. The Board came back later that day and reclassified my position along with a hefty pay raise. I never placed my boss in a bad light during this time and three years ago I was asked by another Department to be the Executive Assistant to the Director of that Department. I am not saying this would work for everyone but if presented right the worse they can do is say no.

Research, research, research before approaching your boss. Get a printed copy of your job description. If things have been added request that personnel update this. When you have a good description then go to and do their free survey, your states workforce website and even goggle search comparable jobs. With all of this in mind when you present your proposal approach it as a market adjustment for the position and not a pay raise for you personally. By the time you have researched this you WILL have the confidence to make the proposal/request. Then if it is turned down you will have the opportunity to choose to go elsewhere and the information to know what you are worth.

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