Last year I was made redundant from a job I had been at for over 10 years. After nearly 6mths of being unemployed and searching for work I was offered a job with a new employer. The role offered unfortunately paid £6k less salary, has higher travel costs and expensive parking fees that weren't present at my previous firm. When accepting the role my new firm were unresponsive to salary negotiations and had me backed into a corner where I wasn't in a strong position to negotiate. As I was very keen to get back into work I accepted the position regardless of the negatives as returning to work was the most important thing to achieve. I have now been here for 6 months and I am about to reach the end of my 6mth probation review period.

My question is: "Is 6mths too early to negotiate a payrise at a new job?".

I am currently paid what I think is below market rate for my role and level of experience. I have 9 years experience in my field so classify myself as mid-level to senior for my role / field. My current salary pays £6k less than what I received from my old employer and I am now doing a more technical harder role. My salary is also £5-£10k lower then other jobs I interviewed for 6mths ago when I had less technical skills and experience. I am keen not to upset them as I am grateful for the position / opportunity but I feel that they have taken advantage of the situation I was in and that a salary raise is fare.

closed as primarily opinion-based by Jim G., Jan Doggen, gnat, David S., IDrinkandIKnowThings Sep 15 '14 at 13:39

Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

  • I'm trying to understand how 6 months equates to "more technical skills and experience" for someone who already has "9 years"? 6 months is a blip at that level, unless your prior 9 years is no longer applicable to the job you are performing. In which case, 6 months isn't enough to justify a rate increase. – NotMe Sep 15 '14 at 20:58
  • 1
    @ChrisLively – Both jobs require the same experience and skills, the only difference between them has been the technologies being used. For eg job one used language A the current job uses language B, as i had not used language B before this role i am now capable of doing A and B so have more experience than before. Make sense?. – Stormy Sep 15 '14 at 22:05
up vote 16 down vote accepted

My question is: "Is 6mths too early to negotiate a payrise at a new job?".

"Too early" will almost certainly be a company-specific, and an individual-specific thing.

In my company, and every company where I have worked, employees were never given raises at the 6 month period, unless it was specifically spelled out as such in the original contract (and that was very rare). Otherwise, one year was always the first time that raises occurred.

The fact that you are making less than you used to, less than other positions you interviewed for 6 months ago (but either didn't get an offer, or didn't accept an offer) and less than you would prefer, is not likely to be relevant to your current employer.

But perhaps because 6 months is the end of your probation period, that might be important at your company. You might wish to ask around and see what happened when others reached the end of their probation. If your company happens to have a standard practice of negotiating new salaries at the end of probation, then you might have a good chance.

You could always choose to ask for a raise anyway. Lay out your case, but emphasize the value you bring to the company, not what you got in your last job, or other jobs you didn't get 6 months ago.

You might get a raise, or you might not. But if you talk about it respectfully and professionally, they are unlikely to get upset.

Unless there's a stated policy, 6 months seems an appropriate time to bring up the subject of salary. The burden of proof is on you, however, to demonstrate that you are worthy of a raise.

I would recommend working on essentially a business case for an increase of salary, with concrete examples of why you deserve it. Your assertion that you are being taken advantage of or being paid below market won't be enough. Research what the current salary is for your position. Give them a number higher than you think they will accept.

Remember that your current employer has no responsibility or connection to your old employer -- from your employer's perspective, maybe you were overpaid previously.

Be professional and courteous, trying to see it from your employer's point of view, why you are a good investment for them. Do not threaten to quit or anything like that.

If after that, they do not give you a raise or some kind of timetable, then if you are below market, you should start looking for an opportunity with another company that will pay your true value.

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