Now playing
01:40
How reading body language can help you get a raise
Now playing
02:42
A challenging year for women: Millions are out of work
PHOTO: Branislav Nenin/Shutterstock
Now playing
02:27
Is working from home the new normal?
A screenshot of Alpana Chakravarti, a single mother of two who was laid off due to the pandemic, with her daughter.
PHOTO: CNN
A screenshot of Alpana Chakravarti, a single mother of two who was laid off due to the pandemic, with her daughter.
Now playing
02:43
Women bearing brunt of pandemic's economic cost
PHOTO: Shutterstock
Now playing
04:47
Permanent work from home is here. Will cities survive?
Now playing
03:09
Trivago CEO's son crashes live CNN interview
Now playing
02:43
What some companies are doing to establish WFH balance
Now playing
02:58
Childcare challenges force some working moms to put their careers on hold
PHOTO: CAMIO
Now playing
03:15
This AI technology tracks employees to enforce social distancing
MOUNTAIN VIEW, CA - SEPTEMBER 02:  The new Google logo is displayed at the Google headquarters on September 2, 2015 in Mountain View, California.  Google has made the most dramatic change to their logo since 1999 and have replaced their signature serif font with a new typeface called Product Sans.  (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
PHOTO: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images North America/Getty Images
MOUNTAIN VIEW, CA - SEPTEMBER 02: The new Google logo is displayed at the Google headquarters on September 2, 2015 in Mountain View, California. Google has made the most dramatic change to their logo since 1999 and have replaced their signature serif font with a new typeface called Product Sans. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Now playing
02:48
Google extends work from home policy amid pandemic
PHOTO: BBC/Sky News
Now playing
01:14
Watch children interrupt live BBC, Sky News interviews
Now playing
03:26
Dell exec: Remote working means a bigger talent pool
future office coronavirus covid 19 pandemic technology social distancing sebastian pkg intl ldn vpx_00004211.jpg
future office coronavirus covid 19 pandemic technology social distancing sebastian pkg intl ldn vpx_00004211.jpg
Now playing
02:42
Acrylic glass, masks, warning signs: Is this the office of the future?
Now playing
01:51
Five tips to look more professional on a video conference
Now playing
04:27
Working from home could shake up parenting dynamics
Now playing
03:05
Parents face extra challenges working from home

Getting paid what you’re worth is an important part of any job, but negotiating a raise can be both stressful and uncomfortable.

If you think you should be better compensated, it’s up to you to make a convincing argument for it. Proper research can help you go into the conversation prepared, which will better your chances of presenting a strong case to your manager.

Think about timing

Before you initiate a raise conversation, think about the bigger picture and what’s going on at your workplace.

When a company is having financial difficulties or is in the midst of a major transition, it’s probably not the right time to ask for a raise. If your boss is dealing with things like layoffs, a restructuring, or outside scrutiny over company scandals, you’ll want to wait until things have settled down a bit.

“Perhaps this is a time where you empathize with him or her, building a little bit of a trust cushion,” said Olivia Jaras, founder of Salarycoaching.com. “That could set the stage for a negotiation in a couple months down the line, which can be more auspicious for you.”

Do your homework

Whether you get a raise or not is going to be determined by a couple of different factors. Some will be out of your control, but doing your research will better your chances.

Before going into a conversation about a raise, you should keep a finger on the pulse of your market value. Figure out how your current pay compares to your market value, how you’re performing relative to your peers, and what your company’s compensation philosophy is.

Career sites like Glassdoor, Salary.com, or Payscale are a good starting point for salary data on positions similar to yours.

Reviewing your resume and looking at the position description you were hired for can also give you an overview of your work performance and career development. Your responsibilities may have increased since the day you were hired, or you might have had training or gained other skills.

“If you’ve gained skills and qualifications that are meaningful to your position, how do those get valued by your company? Those are kind of check marks in favor of getting a raise,” Jaras said.

Understand your boss’s perspective

Once you’re armed with all the information you need, you may feel like you’re set.

But now is the time to take a look at your achievements from your manager’s perspective. What reasons might your boss have to say no to giving you a pay bump? And how do you address them?

Understanding where the other person is coming from and what their reservations might be will help you counter them. One way of doing that is to think of your manager’s top five reasons for saying no.

“If you think they’re really good reasons to say no to you, you’re probably not going to get it,” said Deborah Kolb, author of Negotiating at Work: Turn Small Wins into Big Gains. “But when you anticipate what’s going to happen, you come in prepared to deal with it.”

Keep it professional

Your argument should always be a rational one, so avoid getting too personal. Coming into the negotiation reasoning that you have to put five kids through college or that you found out your colleague earns more than you, isn’t a good idea.

These things may be the reason why you want a raise, but they’re not tied to your work performance.

It might get you a pity raise, but it’s probably not going to maximize what you can earn. What you should do is tell your boss about the ways you’ve contributed to the bottom line of the company.

Think long-term

Negotiating salary doesn’t always go as planned, and you should be prepared to handle an outcome that wasn’t what you wanted. But getting a “no” doesn’t have to be a defeat, and handling it the right way can set the foundation for a future raise.

You may be disappointed by the bad news, but always end the conversation on a positive note. Reinforcing the idea that you are excited about continuing your service to the company and expanding the contributions that you make, can keep the door open for future dialogue.

“You have to be strategic about how you conduct that discussion,” said Alex Twersky, cofounder of Resume Deli, a resume and career services firm. “You can’t be too demanding or too insistent. You want to be professional, patient, collaborative and constructive.”

This could also be an opportunity for you to ask for feedback, and think about what skills you can improve to make a stronger case for a pay bump.