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How to negotiate a higher salary—and get the raise you deserve

Nearly half of all U.S. workers earned a pay increase in 2019, according to a report. Whether you’re just starting out, or further along in your career, there are some tried and true methods you can use to help negotiate an offer.

Getting the salary you want starts with knowing what you’re worth, and having the proper information to back it up. You’ll want to consider things like your years of experience, skill set, market demand, industry averages and where the job is located.

Negotiating a raise?

If you’re already working and looking for a salary bump, here are some Do’s and Don’ts to consider before walking into your boss’ office to ask for one.

Negotiating a new salary?

Most companies will talk salary early on in the interview process to make sure you’re both in the same ballpark. Always try to avoid throwing out the first number. Be patient. Use what you know about yourself and the role to negotiate.


of professionals tried to negotiate for higher pay.

Source: Robert Half, 2019

Back up your request with information from previous jobs, your industry, or the firm itself. Once you present your case, ask something like: “Would you be able to pay X?” Name a number higher than what you’re targeting, but not so high that the company is turned off.


of senior managers said they expect candidates to negotiate their salary.

Source: Robert Half, 2019

Is all of the work really worth it?

Even small salary increases can add up over an entire career. The average pay raise in 2019 was around 3 percent, according to an Aon survey. Now that may not seem like a lot, but consider someone fresh out of college at age 22, making $50,000 a year.

If they retired at 65 years old, here’s how much would they make throughout their career.

Close text version

3% yearly raises [Graph shows roughly $4,452,420]
5% yearly raises [Graph shows roughly $7,557,150]
7% yearly raises [Graph shows roughly $13,306,043]

What’s next?

So, you did your research, you negotiated a salary or raise and you got what you were hoping for. Now it’s time to think about what to do with this extra money in your bank account.

Close Disclaimer

The material provided on this website is for informational use only and is not intended for financial, tax or investment advice. Bank of America and/or its affiliates, and Khan Academy, assume no liability for any loss or damage resulting from one’s reliance on the material provided. Please also note that such material is not updated regularly and that some of the information may not therefore be current. Consult with your own financial professional and tax advisor when making decisions regarding your financial situation.

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