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    11 Negotiating Tips For Anyone Who Wants To Ask For A Raise While Working From Home

    Get paid what you're worth, no matter where you work.

    Remote work comes with perks, like cutting out commutes and spending the day in comfy pants, but it also has its challenges, like less interactions with coworkers and management. So after more than a year without IRL face time with the boss, many remote workers may be feeling more nervous than usual about their prospects for negotiating a raise.

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    Complicating the situation, some companies like Google have announced plans to pay some remote workers less, depending on where they live. Ouch.

    Asking for more cash can be intimidating, even during "normal" times. So to get some tips on negotiating a raise from home (or wherever your remote office is), I talked to Andrew Hunter, co-founder of the job search engine Adzuna.

    1. First, if you're feeling extra shy about negotiating from home, acknowledge those feelings — but don't let them control you.

    2. Before you even start to ask for a raise, get in the habit of tooting your own horn a little bit to make sure your work doesn't go unnoticed.

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    Don't worry, you don't need to boast and brag all day long to highlight your accomplishments. Instead, Hunter suggests, "Once you’ve completed a major assignment, consider telling your manager or those on your team. It doesn’t have to be in a self-serving manner, but simply letting your teammates know you’ve finished something shows you’re working diligently." This could be as simple as dropping a quick update in your team's Slack channel or sending a group email to thank everyone who helped you with a larger project. 

    While you're at it, it can also be super helpful to keep a running list or "brag file" of your accomplishments and contributions. That way, when the time comes to negotiate, you have all your selling points listed at your fingertips.

    3. And do your best to stay on top of communication during your regular working hours.

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    Don't feel pressured to check email 24/7 (unless that's an actual job requirement), but definitely do your best to be responsive and available during your usual office hours. With so many people working remotely, Hunter says, "Timeliness and communication are more important than ever. If your boss or a colleague messages you with a request, try to respond within a reasonable time frame to show you’re actively carrying out your responsibilities." And if you can't complete a request right away, message back that you've seen it, and give an ETA for when it'll be done. That way, your manager and your team know that you're on top of things.

    4. If you have the bandwidth for it, consider volunteering to take on any extra tasks that need doing.

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    "Volunteer for tasks where appropriate to show your enthusiasm and willingness to help for the good of the team," Hunter advises. Offering to tackle an assignment that nobody else wants or picking up a little slack after a coworker leaves can definitely help your case when you're negotiating for a raise. Just be mindful of your time and energy, and try not to push yourself to the point of burnout. 

    5. Similarly, consider taking advantage of any opportunities your employer might present you with to grow your skills and keep learning.

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    "Learning new skills or working toward a certification is another great way to increase your value and earn a raise," says Hunter. "Workers should take advantage of opportunities to upskill by jumping on any chances for on-the-job training with enthusiasm." And keep in mind, any skills you pick up in your current job can also help you get paid even more in your next role. So if extra trainings and new skills don't equal more money at your current company, you could still reap the rewards of this education down the line.

    6. Make sure that you're really ready to ask for a raise based on how long you've been in your role and considering recent feedback on your performance.

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    "Workers should avoid jumping into salary negotiations too early into a new job," Hunter advises. Generally, if you've been in your job less than six months, it would probably be wise to wait to ask for a raise. And if you've been with your company more than a year, it's usually OK to ask for a raise once a year.  

    And think about any performance feedback you've gotten recently. "Asking for a raise when performance doesn’t merit the request is a quick way for employers to say no right off the bat," says Hunter. If your boss seems really happy with you, that could be a green light to start negotiating. On the other hand, if there are big areas where you're trying to improve, get to work on those things, and document your progress. Showing growth can also help you negotiate in the future.

    7. If you're feeling like you're in a good place to negotiate, do some research to see what market rates are in your area.

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    How can you ask for what you're worth if you don't really know? Answer: You can't! So Hunter says the most important step in your salary negotiation is doing this research to find out how much to ask for. "When an employee intricately understands their skills and the value they bring to the table, an employer will be more likely to acknowledge the same." He suggests researching how competitors pay for jobs similar to yours, and don't forget to look at the benefits and perks! Those are just as much a part of your compensation as your paycheck.

    8. When you're ready to have the talk, Hunter says, "A face-to-face conversation is always best, even if it’s via Zoom."

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    As for how to schedule this meeting, Hunter suggests being direct. "It’s best to send an email in advance, outlining that you’d like to book a meeting to discuss the compensation package for your role and asking for some convenient times — then stick to it! Calendars can be busier than ever when working remotely, so be prepared to be a little flexible." And just like asking for a raise in person, spend some time before the meeting practicing what you're going to say. You might even rehearse with a trusted mentor or work buddy, if that helps ease your negotiation jitters.

    9. Make some notes about your achievements and salary expectations, and keep them close by during your negotiation.

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    If you wind up talking on Zoom, you can use the remote meeting to your advantage. "A huge positive of having this conversation remotely is that you can have notes in front of you without your manager being aware, so you can give them a quick skim if you forget something," says Hunter. And keep a pen handy so you can take notes during the conversation too. That way if you get any constructive feedback or suggestions, you can jot it down for future reference. 

    10. During the conversation, avoid mentioning any coworkers' salaries. Instead, keep the negotiation focused on your skills, accomplishments, and growth.

    11. Finally, talking about your long-term future shows that you don't have to be physically present in the office to be committed to your role.

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    Hunter says, "The most useful conversations around salary raises are part of a longer-term career plan about what you want, and how you can get there." So don't just talk about the dollar amount you want to see on your next paycheck. Ask your boss about opportunities for growth and where you want your career to go. "A candid conversation with your boss about future ambitions and the skills you need to hone to get there is a great way of getting paid more in the long term. Getting your employers ‘buy-in’ on your career ambitions shows you’re committed to sticking around, as well as keen to learn and advance."

    Have you negotiated for a raise while working remotely? Share your best tips for getting more money in the comments!

    And for more stories about work and money, check out the rest of our personal finance posts