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My company never had a "software programmer" position and only had "mechatronics engineers", which do a mix of programming/EE and testing/integration. Recently, the company opened a req for an experienced software programmer. I was told that this role was needed for us to take on new forms of work in the future. Our company is quickly growing and we've been on a continuous hiring spree, I want to take this opportunity to pursue a promotion in this new role.

I have a background in software but not at the level of being experienced. I'm interested in also taking a software position in the company. I'm considering talking with my boss to transition myself to this role, not to replace the experienced software programmer we hire, but as someone who would build up that team.

Is it sensible for me to ask him to change my title? I'd still work the same tasks, but slowly transition into the software role as more work comes in. At the same time, can I request an increase in salary to match industry standards for such a role?

My question is, what do I need to prepare for this meeting? I can think of the following:

  • I was lent to our parent company for a while and worked solely on software. I can mention my success there
  • I recently completed a CS masters
  • a few more upcoming projects might require more cs effort

The only issue is that even the new software programmer getting hired will start off doing mechatronics work and will similarly ramp into a full software role as we get more work. I'm not sure if this would make my point to getting a raise moot. At the very least, I can see myself getting this new title, but getting the pay to match that is my dilemma.

Is this the correct approach?

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You can ask to change jobs, and work to prove you will deliver more value to the company in that role and thus deserve a raise eventually.

Or you can demonstrate value where you are, and justify the raise there. Which may or may not get you a raise sooner.

You really can't expect them to give you a raise "on spec", in the hope that you're going to do better in the future.

Pick one or the other.

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