19

I currently work as a developer on a platform that demands certifications. Without these certifications, you're basically out of the running for any role that requires development on this platform. As it stands, I hold a certification on said platform.

Earlier this year, during an annual pay review I was offered a salary increase and a promotion. Additionally, after two quarters (around July) they'd review it again with a view to increase my salary again. I suppose this isn't too dissimilar to a probation period for the promotion. Regardless, all that is great!

However, I'm looking to take a higher-certification later on this year. So I was wondering whether or not to approach the business for another pay raise/review (given I'll already have had (hopefully) two already this year). I made the point to my manager that I intended on taking this.

I'm making 2 assumptions here:

  • I'll get the pay raise at the end of July
  • I'll pass the exam

I'm pretty confident on both points; however, at the moment they are assumptions.

My question is, given that I'll have had 2 pay reviews in a single year, is it acceptable/worthwhile/wise asking for another, given I've made myself more valuable in taking the exam and earning the certification? Or would it be best to just wait until the following year?

Edit I think I've got my answer. Generally people are saying to just wait. I think I'll likely just say in passing "Hey, I got this better certification!" Best case: they'll discuss pay; worst: I'll get a nice company-wide e-mail and a stronger position for the next annual pay raise.

  • 3
    It looks as if your company is very good at honoring their employees according to their skills and performance. Why not just trust them to reward you for the effort? You can always ask for a raise if they do not act themselves after you've proven your new skill set. – Ralph Rickenbach May 2 '16 at 11:05
  • @JoeStrazzere Automatically I'd say no, but I would say it provides a kind of "unspoken" justification for it. I can definitely see your point though, it's set to be a busy year! I may just drop a hint saying "hey, I've passed this exam!" and see what they do. – user38869 May 2 '16 at 11:20
  • On a side note why was my question downvoted? I couldn't see anything similar and it's not totally an unjustified question? – user38869 May 2 '16 at 11:21
  • 4
    I worked for a company who gave a raise each certification, after I got 4 certs in my first year there, they changed their policy, don't be greedy. – Kilisi May 2 '16 at 11:50
27

Wether or not this would go over well is heavily dependant on the personality and tolerance of your superiors. I wouldn't risk it.

You can, of course, bring up at the end of July that you are looking into getting this certificate and ask then if that would bring up another avenue for a raise, but independently asking for a third raise in the same year would probably be quite unsavory.

If you get a promise for another review/raise out of that, you should insist on getting it in writing.

Generally speaking, if your employer isn't looking to screw you over, you can expect to get regular raises until you're in the ballpark of the value you add to the company. The more value you add to it, the more you can justify getting another raise.

17

If you think this is going to work, give it a shot, however don't go greedy thinking this is the formula to keep getting raises since your employer will only pay you as much as their budget allows and eventually this treat for your effort will no longer work and you will end up being frustrated or they will have some problems keeping you aboard.

I tell you this as employee and employer, sometimes you want to reward your staff's effort but you just can't make enough money to keep everyone happy.

  • 1
    Basically this. For as long as you can justify your increased pay, there's no problem. If getting a certificate is going to bring in more/better paying customers or assignments. Then yes, a salary increase could be in order. If this is not the case. Then it would be unlikely that your employer would be able or want to give another pay raise. – Migz May 2 '16 at 11:12
  • I agree and my experience bears this answer out. – Kilisi May 2 '16 at 11:53
  • I find this answer to be more worth of the accept mark personally. – Magisch May 2 '16 at 11:55
  • @Magisch Nothing wrong with this answer at all! Perhaps I should have made it clearer that I wasn't intending on taking exam after exam just so I can shout "raise!" at every opportunity, rather this is just a one of scenario where I wasn't sure what the best strategy is. This really is a good answer though, great advice and worth every upvote it's gotten! – user38869 May 3 '16 at 7:49
15

If your company is already giving you two opportunities for a raise in a single year, I'd say asking for a third will seem bold at best, and probably more along the lines of "greedy". You have already been given a raise this year, and you might get another, I would wait until your next annual pay review. Moreover, it seems like your qualifications are being recognized and given value, and the point of the annual pay reviews is already to put your salary/position back in line with your value to the company.

Wait until next year and your next automatic review, if your new qualification gives you value, it is likely to be rewarded. And if it's not, well, you didn't ask for it anyway, so you're not going to look greedy.

5

You wrote, "during an annual pay review"; so of course another alternative is to wait until your next annual review and suggest a pay rise then, based on what you did (including get another certification) during the previous year.

1

If certifications are as important as you say in your area, then I think that is an exception to the rule. There's nothing wrong with knowing the company's position on employee certification and pay.

A company that wants to give incentives for certifications, should be more upfront about the benefits and shouldn't discourage people from getting them sooner rather than later.

You may find you have a better relationship with your immediate supervisor and can ask about it in casual conversation. Some companies have set time frames on evaluations and other promotions.

All companies and managers are different and only you can tell how they will react along with your tolerance for risk. Keep an eye on the current job market. You may find this next certification is worth more than you think.

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