I have started a new role, where I’m a week into the job, it was an internal move where as part of moving I negotiated a significant pay rise.

The problem is where the HR system hasn’t updated to reflect this and after asking my boss, he has mentioned that it is going through the approval process without giving timeframes on when that will be completed.

I do not want to keep on badgering my boss about this, but at the same time concerned over why this has not been sorted out earlier, as part of my move. Also worried if for whatever reason it fails the approval process I will not get the salary I had negotiated and we agreed on.

What should I do?


  • Does this answer your question? How should I properly approach my boss if I'm feeling underpaid?
    – gnat
    Commented Sep 11, 2021 at 17:58
  • 6
    Let me guess: you are doing the new role with responsibilities even though they "can’t, or won’t," sort the money. Gullible and there are so many posts about this situation. Saw one where he went back to the old role until it was cleared up… Your choice.
    – Solar Mike
    Commented Sep 11, 2021 at 19:56
  • 2
    We agreed before I started what my new salary would be, I started expecting it would be sorted but hasn’t
    – bobo2000
    Commented Sep 12, 2021 at 1:00
  • Is the pay increase retroactive ?
    – Maxime
    Commented Sep 13, 2021 at 14:58
  • @bobo2000 in writing, did you agree?
    – user53861
    Commented Sep 14, 2021 at 19:42

5 Answers 5


What should I do?

Unless you don't trust your boss, be patient. There's nothing else to be done and after all, it's only been a week.

And if for some reason you don't trust your boss, update your resume and find a new job.

  • Thanks, how long is too long to wait?
    – bobo2000
    Commented Sep 11, 2021 at 16:18
  • 1
    To be honest I don’t understand why the approval process wasn’t done before I started. I have honestly never been in a situation like this before, whenever I’ve joined a new role , the manager makes sure it’s been done. Instead now I have to play politics to get what we had agreed.
    – bobo2000
    Commented Sep 12, 2021 at 17:39

I would accept the new role, it is good for your career progression. Then I would suggest raising this with your manager politely, indicating that after your raise in responsibilities you are now expecting a corresponding raise in pay. Be careful not to make this an ultimatum officially, just have a discussion, and come prepared with a good idea of what that raise should be.

You then have the option of pursuing the raise by switching to another company - this should be made easier by the fact you hold this role already.

There's plenty of advice on workplace SO on how to make such a move.

This gives your company a fair chance to meet market price, if they refuse, consider your options. It may seem unlikely that they do agree to a raise, but it's definitely possible, especially once you have an offer from somewhere else

  • 3
    It’s not really something I should be negotiating at this stage, it was already agreed as part of accepting the role.
    – bobo2000
    Commented Sep 12, 2021 at 9:27
  • I realize that, and have taken it into account - you can still bring up an adjustment to market value. Do your homework, and proceed with as much caution as you consider appropriate - the more you want to hang on to your job, the less aggressive you should be. On the other hand, do consider that at most companies, a promotion is the only chance to get a significant raise (budgeting etc.)
    – bytepusher
    Commented Sep 13, 2021 at 11:51
  • @bobo2000 - Did you get it in writing? Whomever, gave it to you in writing, were they authorized to do so?
    – Donald
    Commented Sep 13, 2021 at 18:26
  • Yes It was discussed in writing
    – bobo2000
    Commented Sep 14, 2021 at 15:01

Wait for the first paycheck

If you already talked to the boss and HR about this problem, you did what you could. I suggest writing official mail (if you did not do that) and asking for confirmation and clarification of your new role, with accompanying pay raise.

If they refuse to confirm this, and you do not get the raise, there a several options you have:

  • Check your original contract or agreement, and your status in HR system. Then simply return to your old job, and refuse to do anything that has something to do with new job.

  • If you have a written offer and at least some kind of proof about new job and pay raise, you may check your local legal system and sue for lost(unpaid) wages.

  • Play dumb and do your new role in hopes of enhancing your resume, and then moving to a new job.

  • Go to a silent(white) strike where you would do as little as possible in your new role.

    Depending on circumstances some of these options could get you fired, or at least get you in confrontation with management. Therefore, assess carefully what are you willing to risk. Since your current company looks a bit shady (or dishonest) it would be advisable to look for a new job in any case.


Also worried if for whatever reason it fails the approval process I will not get the salary I had negotiated and we agreed on.

Are you willing to avoid doing the new job and go back to your old job if the pay raise doesn't go through?

If you answer "yes" to that question, you made a strategic mistake by agreeing to start the new work before knowing what was going to happen for sure with your pay.

Follow-up questions:

Would you be willing to stop doing the new work and go back to the old work until this issue gets resolved? Would this even be possible? What I'm proposing is a risky tactic, which is definitely NOT for everybody, as it may anger your boss considerably, and perhaps it could even mean that you could get fired for it, but ultimately, it's not like you have many options to choose from.

Either you wait it out (perhaps indefinitely), or you try to do something about it and try to extract a promise in writing (or over email) that they're going to give you an automatic pay raise by a certain date, or return you to your old position instead.

  • I work for a well known corporate company, and not a small company where levels of professionalism is questionable. Would have expected this to be sorted out as part of the move
    – bobo2000
    Commented Sep 12, 2021 at 0:35
  • @bobo2000, I didn't mean to criticize you. This message was as much for my future self as it was for you, because I would have probably done the same thing as you did given the same set of circumstances. Commented Sep 12, 2021 at 2:25

You should walk away and never look back.

You are being scammed.

It's clear you were tricked in to thinking you had some sort of "actual offer".

However. only now this "boss" is "going through the approval process".

You've been scammed.

  • 4
    This is jumping to conclusions and a career damaging advice. With this mindset better never start at a big cooperation. The processes are stupid, but you'll get what you agreed on.
    – Chris
    Commented Sep 13, 2021 at 6:22
  • 1
    I hope so - frankly annoying it’s still going through the ‘approval’ process when I’ve already started. Shouldn’t this have been approved before I started?
    – bobo2000
    Commented Sep 13, 2021 at 7:22
  • 1
    @bobo2000 Yes, it should. Unfortunately in big companies it's almost never like it should be.
    – Chris
    Commented Sep 13, 2021 at 10:33
  • @bobo2000 - how did it turn out? I was right?
    – Fattie
    Commented Mar 24 at 15:31

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