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I just got a good salary offer from another company. I like my current company and would like to stay here if they offer me the same amount. I was wondering how should I convey this information to my current company? Should I go and meet the HR in person? Should I email our HR? Or should I resign first and wait for them to ask me why I resigned?

closed as off-topic by Michael Grubey, jmac, Jan Doggen, CincinnatiProgrammer, Rhys Aug 2 '13 at 8:26

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    Questions that ask, "what should I do?" are difficult to give a good answer to because you know better than anyone what your situation is. Focusing the question on a specific aspect of your dilemma will help you get better answers. – jmac Aug 1 '13 at 6:13
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You want to negotiate your salary, and negotiations should always be done in person. So ask for an appointment with the one who is responsible for salary negotiations at your company. Having another offer is always a good leverage in a negotiation.

Handing in your resignation would show that you are serious, but it might also send the message that you already made your decision and it would be pointless to negotiate anymore. So you should only do this when the first negotiation has failed.

Also, before you hand in the resignation, make sure that you really have the job at the other company. Never resign before you got a signed work contract with your next employer. Otherwise the new company might withdraw their offer and you will be unemployed.

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    @JoeStrazzere - Its also dangerous to accept a counter offer. Often times once you accept this counter offer you find you are training your replacement in the near future. – Donald Jul 16 '13 at 16:22
  • @Ramhound +1 for your comment – zzzzz Jul 17 '13 at 4:22
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    Good grief, I'm agreeing with @JoeStrazzere! The counter-offer game never ends well for either side. Ask for a raise, telling them you have "reliable market information" about pay rates (It would help if you could find other data, too). Then if they offer it, decide if you want to accept it. – Wesley Long Jul 17 '13 at 22:22
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I like my current company and would like to stay here if they offer me the same amount.

This is a key point I think the other answers are not really addressing.

You actually want to stay at your company.

So first, you need to have a conversation about a raise. Figure out what salary you should be paid and have some resources about this. Are you underpaid in your position? There are a lot of questions here about how to approach a raise, such as this one.

The reason you want to do this first is because you do not want to tell your employer, effectively, "I want more money or I'm leaving." If you approach your manager with this attitude, you have to be completely willing to leave. You are not, which means you want a more subtle approach.

Second, if your salary goes up as a result, great, you're done, you do not have to worry! But if not, your other questions matter more.

Should I go and meet the HR in person?

This is risky because you will be telling your HR department, "I am seriously thinking about leaving this company and have been actively interviewing elsewhere." They may see this as, "workerboy dislikes his/her job enough that unless we give him more money, he/she will leave, and even if we do, probably will still leave."

Or should I resign first and wait for them to ask me why I resigned?

This is the equivalent of going "all in." It is a pretty poor idea in the situation where you want to stay with your employer. Think of this from your employer perspective:

  • Employee quits
  • Employee says, "if you offer more $$$ I will stay!"
  • Employer says, "eh, they wanted to quit, probably won't stick around anyways"
  • etc
  • While on the surface the advice sounds reasonable, I think there is a real issue with timing. I would expect that the new company wants a prompt answer so they know if they need to continue searching for another candidate. You can probably stall for a short while, but not all that long. Whereas, at the current company, how do you get them to move the process along quickly without tipping them off that you are on a short timeline? – Dunk Jul 25 '13 at 18:04
  • "eh, they wanted to quit, probably won't stick around anyways" -- in particular, if they require you to match the other offer then they only like you about the same amount as they like the other lot. The ones who really like it here turn down job offers for more money as well as job offers that are matched, because they think they'll be less happy in the other job and want to be compensated for that. – Steve Jessop Sep 4 '15 at 3:26
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This is not a time for being passive. If you actually care to stay in the company, you have to be articulate on your own behalf, you can't hope that someone will figure it out.

1 - Notify your Direct Supervisor

Draft a resignation letter, if you are REALLY ready to resign. There are templates online for this, it's a formal letter. Generally, keep it short and sweet, positive and not accusatory. And put in the late date of work - the amount of notice you give can be contract dependant or ruled by the norms of the place you live and the industry in which you work.

Have it tucked away in your notebook (folded neatly, of course).

Book an hour with your direct supervisor - don't make this a hallway conversation. Tell them about the offer, and tell that the big motivation is a really significant pay bump. Clarify why you like the job you have more, but that you won't stay if it means the current rate of pay.

Be ready to listen. At this point, your supervisor will do one of several things:

  • Ask you to wait, and give him time to research salary increase options (hooray! you win!)

  • Give you clarification on why they'd like you to stay, but they can't give you a raise or can't give you the raise you want. This is where serious listening is important - there may be useful feedback on performance here. There may also be some great insights into the business - the company can't pay you more, if it isn't making enough profit to pay you more. If it isn't making the profit it needs to to pay competitively, you have to question the stability of the company whether it's the right long term plan for you. Stay if you believe it'll turn around, leave if you don't trust the business plan.

  • Say "well, it was nice working with you", or something similar. If the boss gives up completely, you know you won't be getting a raise anytime soon.

If you get the last option - give the boss your resignation letter and head back to your desk. Don't necessarily start packing (unless you said you were quitting TODAY), or telling coworkers. Give the boss a day to consider it.

Options 1 & 2 can be addressed on a case by case basis. If you need time to think, it's always OK to say "give me a day". Taking a long time to consider at this point is rude to both your current office, and your new potential employer, but taking a day is usually not a big deal. Even for option 3, give your boss time to consider. People can be impressively dense, and your boss may not have believed it until you gave him the formal letter.

2 - You'll hear from HR

If you and your boss have gotten to a point (after some possible negotiation) where you gave him a resignation letter, the typical policy is that he will file the form with Human Resources, and they will begin the formal end-of-work procedures. If you gave your boss the form and didn't hear back within 24 hours, call or email HR and notify them yourself of your resignation. In essence, if you haven't heard from them, don't assume they know.

HR will have some collection of end-of-work procedures - forms to be signed, equipment return procedures, etc.

For a big company, one thing that will probably happen is a survey, a debrief or both. Typically an HR representative will sit down with you somewhere around your last day and ask why you are leaving. You can certainly mention the salary - but at this point, you are informing HR that the going rate for your skill level is higher than the current rate of pay - it's not putting you in a good position for bargaining. The reason to tell your boss about the salary issue is that waiting until the last day or so to bring this up is WAY too late. HR doesn't know you or your work as well as your boss does. And this late in the game, you would have already accepted the offer from the other company, and quitting at the last minute is exceptionally rude. Better to have this conversation early on, before you accept the offer.

3 - Tell your collegues

Once your boss and HR are informed, feel free to tell your colleagues. Sometimes the boss will make an announcement - sometimes not. Regardless, for those who you have a good working relationship, make it a personal contact.

The thing not to do is to rant or debate about the salary issues with colleagues. If one takes you aside and asks privately why the move, you can be honest if you trust the collegue to act professionally. But leaving the office while telling everyone and anyone about the poor rate of pay in the current company is generally tacky.

  • But leaving the office while telling everyone and anyone about the poor rate of pay in the current company is generally tacky I'd say it's definitely tacky to do, and ruins your image. If you've watched the film Border, you might remember - it's illustrated by Sunny Deol and Soodesh Berry in a very dramatic manner. – cst1992 Apr 20 '16 at 10:41
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Let's focus on the wanting to stay part. Why haven't you asked for a raise before looking for another job?

  1. You thought your current salary was good enough/competitive until you discovered at least one company that will pay you more. This is why it's important to interview for several jobs and continue to interview. It's good practice and you get to learn what you're worth.
  2. You're reluctant to ask for raises in general and/or you're no good at it. This happens. I wonder how many people go their whole career and never ask for a raise?
  3. Your boss indicated the company can't afford to give you a raise. Doesn't seem to be the issue here, but some companies give the impression that it is frowned upon to ask for a raise and could bring negative consequences. Doesn't seem like that's the company you want to work for. You could get a raise by telling them you have a counter-offer or not, but they're going to hold back on your next raise and/or bonus. You could make less money in the long-run.

If you're sincere about wanting to stay, just ask for a raise. Put in your notice if you don't get it. You shouldn't do it right away. Take your time and write a good resignation. Let them know that you like the company, but found an opportunity that fits your career goals. Don't put in writing that you left for more money. They'll assume you're getting more money. Just tell the truth if asked during the exit interview. Don't burn any bridges.

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To answer all your questions I will give you my step by step guide :

I was wondering how should I convey this information to my current company? Should I go and meet the HR in person? Should I email our HR? Or should I resign first and wait for them to ask me why I resigned?

  1. Set up a time with the HR responsible to make salary recomendations. Book a calendar appointment yourself it thats the trend at your job
  2. Talk to the HR about your desire for a salary hike and explain why you think you qualify/deserve for this bump.
  3. Be prepared with your points and include your achievements and also be ready to trade in your benefits if that seems to be the case.
  4. If this persuasion doesn't result fruit (you should be ready to wait at least a week for this since salary increments usually are not a single persons decision and will go through various layers), tell them that you have an offer which gives your expected salary and since your negotiations have failed, you have decided to move on. Ask this person who you should mail your resignation to and then resign and move on after your contractual notice period.

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