questionsi got my annual evaluation/payraise: does anyone…



Maybe I'm just expecting too much. I know I'm fortunate to have a job right now, but I was ranked 12 out of over 100 people. I'd hate to see what the people below me got.

The business was profitable last year. The earnings reports were outstanding all year.

Is this a good standard raise and I've just been getting more all along?


It's tough all over. A lot of companies are taking their profits (if they have any) and holding them tight just in case we have another recession, then they've got some backup cash. Not sure if that's the case in your situation. Who knows, maybe they're giving all the execs huge bonuses. But if they're holding on to some of that extra money to keep the ship afloat through another potential storm I couldn't really fault them for doing so. I'd be thankful I got a raise, many many places don't give you anything.


1.25% sounds good for ANY company in this economy. That ranking of 12 out of 100 means you probably have really good job security, which is worth more than a raise to me in the current climate.


1.25% isn't a raise, it's a cost of living adjustment. When i still worked corporate - that was standard, whether you were good or terrible at your job.

before doing anything hasty though - review it all with your department head. Have a number in mind you'd like to negotiate towards, and say it. Be direct but don't dig in (unless you're willing to walk).


Banking? Now, think about this really hard. Your raise, and bonus, has gone into the execs pockets, guaranteed!

They want us all to be so very grateful just to have a job. I've heard many a tale about cutting pay rate, cutting hours, etc. Basically they want to see how far they can cut us down without making us walk. Seems like the current mantra is 'be afraid, that'll keep them docile'.


There is a whole lot of uncertainty being generated by the debt-ceiling showdown happening AGAIN, so I wouldn't be shocked if that's why you only got a "raise" (I agree with goatcrapp, that's a COLA, not a raise) of 1.25%. They're probably trying to bank more money (no pun intended) in case certain members of Congress cost us yet another credit rating this year.
On the other hand, it never hurts to look for a better offer... unless word gets around at work that you're doing that.


1. Where are you in your pay scale? Some companies grant bigger raises to people at the bottom of the scale and smaller raises to people in the top of the scale. Or, for people at the very top, no raise.

2. Have you applied for a job with more responsibilities or are you planning on doing the same job for the rest of your life and expect to get paid more each year for doing the same responsibilities?

3. A 1.25% raise actually sounds great and I hope I get a similar raise. In fact, I'll keep the same pay that I get now if they promise not to fire me. The economy is so bad that my company is still laying off 40,000 people and I hope I'm not one of them.

4. Raises can be funded at an organization level each year. The senior management discuss raises because one manager may think all their employees deserve a raise and that would take away money from another manager to give raises.

5. Sometimes raises are given to keep high performers from leaving.


I agree about approaching and asking for more money. Be professional about it, not angry, make sure you talk about specific things you did in 2012, like took on extra projects or ways you saved the company money.
I am a very shy person and never want to be in conflicts but the last time I got a bad raise, I just went to my boss and said I was disappointed with my raise and thought I would get more because I had more responsibilities that year and told her specific things that I had done that made me believe I deserved a better raise. I didn't actually say a specific dollar amount I was looking for but they bumped me from a 2% to a 6% raise that year. I was only hoping for another 1 or 2% so I was pleasantly surprised. Your results may vary. LOL


As you may remember, I work for a fairly large credit union. It's doing reasonably well, even in these hard times. I got a 1.5% raise this year, which is fairly typical. (Even in our best days. 3-5% would never happen.) Employees haven't received individual bonuses in five years, but three years ago the CU was able to give all employees a smallish end-of-year bonus that has continued through this year. Benefits are fairly good.

I don't know where you live or what the overall market is, but it sounds as if you're doing better than most. Your salary is apparently in line with the competition (I'm inferring that from your lack of specific comment to the contrary) and you have "tenure" where you are; longevity can be a major asset within your company. You've acknowledged the benefits are good. Doesn't mean you shouldn't see what else is out there, but I'd personally be really cautious; a new job -- especially as a newbie -- might be less stable and rewarding than what I have now.


@tippypaws: Geez! Good for you! (And for your boss, for recognizing talent worth keeping happy.)


lol my company put out it's earingins report the same day as pay raises/promotions. ya think peole complained?? lol


Things could be worse; I haven't even had a COLA in four years and I'm near the top ranks also. I agree with @goatcrapp, but I would add that you make sure you act, not react. By that, I mean that you go in with a clear view of what you want rather than just being upset about the recent review. If you do decide you're willing to walk away, I think physically talking with someone from a decent HR program goes a lot further than a resume template. They could help you know what they would be looking for, what stands out and what doesn't turn them away.


Never admit that you are lucky to have a job. The economy is only bad in places. Where I'm at, it's going great. One state north or south, and it's going even better. Banking is regionally tougher than other "industries". Always keep your ears and eyes open for new job opportunities.


It never hurts to look, just be smart about it. Don't burn any bridges. Look around quietly and decide if you want to move on or not.


If you do go looking elsewhere and you get an offer that isn't great but is better than what you have now, you can use it as leverage to stay where you are by saying, "Look, this other guys are going to give me more money; I'd like to stay here but this is a hard opportunity to pass up." Hopefully they'll see how valuable you are pay to keep you.


@curli76: Bad idea.
Never use a job offer as leverage. It creates animosity in the workplace and might put you at the top of the list for layoffs next time.


@curli76: You have to be careful with a move like that. Your current employer may view it as blackmail and just say "Good Bye and Good Luck" while others may view it as a lack of loyalty and start looking for your replacement. I have been in companies where I have seen both. I have also seen it work and the employee received the raise that they were hoping for.


I would be pleased with a 1.25% increase. My paycheck dropped 2% because of the new SS tax.


My employer did not give bonuses or even COLAs for the last three years I worked, and were not planning increases this year. I retired in July (many years earlier than I had planned) because it had reached the point where there was no financial benefit to staying there. Well, that and the fact that I would have been in charge of telling 300 of our 400 employees that they were being laid off after Christmas. In our case it wasn't economics or finance that froze our salaries or resulted in the layoffs, it was politics. Sucked big time.

Anyway, I would urge you to keep your options open. a.) Be grateful for the increase you received, however slim. b.) Talk with management about your disappointment in the lack of bonuses and the size of the COLA, and hopefully they will either explain why things are tight or will negotiate something better. c.) Keep on the lookout for other opportunities. d.) (And this is the correct answer) ALL OF THE ABOVE!


I think disappointment is a natural reaction and being grateful for having a job doesn't make seeing that raise less disappointing. Do you know if others received higher raises or if your company had a difficult year? Try to separate the non-emotional components (you were a top performer, top performers have previously been rewarded with raises) from the parts of your disappointment that aren't related to your company (two mortgages is a financial burden, but your company shouldn't base raises on that). It's rarely a bad idea to look around quietly, allowing you to compare your benefits (including non-salary benefits), job security/tasks, outlook for promotion, and lifestyle factors like your commute/hours/environment. You might realize that there are better opportunities out there or that your current position is good for you right now. If there's no room for negotiation on the raise/bonus, maybe try negotiating for non-salary benefits (extra vacation days or an adjusted job title)?


Send me an email (my username and I'll share a folder with you on google docs that I have from a career class in college; tons of templates, interview guides/questions, career planning, etc.

Just put your woot username in the subject field.


@neuropsychosocial: I spoke briefly with some other co-workers in my department (a few that I'm close to because discussing monetary amounts is frowned upon) and it seems like I missed the 1.75% (top payout) by a fraction of a point on my review. As a whole, the company decided to skimp this year. I suppose it's not as bad when you view it that way, but it's a still a slap in the face overall because I guarantee the board of directors will still be taking home ginormous bonuses just like every other year.


If you are looking for a start 'template' with some pretty OK examples check out

The site also offers you various editors [Microsoft products] so you can use one you are familiar with.I also suggest that you do not limit yourself to your 'profession'. You can have some fun and get some great ideas from scaning job titles that are far a-field from yours. After you get a resume constructed, do review the job interviewing literature just in case your are called for a quick 'why don't you drop by later .......' or an immediate phone pre-interview. Two fast reading articles on interviewing [you may have to go to your local business school or library to get a copy of this one]
Best of good planning to you and please ask if any questions, Dr.J


I'd be ecstatic to get a 1.25% raise. I am a lawyer but am employed in a shitty, though still "professional", non legal job where I make... not enough money. We NEVER get raises. It is a successful company owned by a rich dude with about 50 employees. I would be thrilled to ever have any type of performance review or really any comment about my performance whatsoever. Been with the company two years and never a PEEP. So... it could be worse?

That said, I would definitely start looking for a job. It doesn't hurt to look! Don't forget that! Just the act of looking might make you feel better (or worse) about your current situation, and guide your future actions.


@capguncowboy: Bonuses for your directors? My credit union BofD are all volunteers, except for the treasurer who is paid because of some requirement regarding fiduciary responsibilities.

I kinda think you're personalizing this a little too much at this point.


I just started my 5th year with no COLA, been with the company 13 years. "Lucky to have a job" is wearing very thin. They can just abuse us as much as they want to, and say "you know where the door is."


@magic cave: First off, I work for a corporation -- it's a retail bank (private label credit cards mostly). Worldwide, we have 300,000 employees. The company is a fortune 100 company. Our board of directors normally take home millions of dollars in bonuses every year. The CEO normally takes a bonus in excess of $10,000,000 each year.

The employees have suffered different explanations over the past years with the housing market collapse (different division of the company, but still part of the overall business) to the overall market collapsing and finally the recession hitting us hard. Stock prices dropped significantly.

The reason I'm upset about the decreased payraise is because everyone worked hard this year to keep costs down -- The company laid off 200,000 employees and the company was profitable for the first time in several years. Everyone expected to get raises that reflected the improvements, but they were less than the past few years.

I guess I'll just suck it up and smile.


@capguncowboy: I'm sorry if my earlier comment seemed like another smack at you; it truly wasn't intended as such. My experience is that the larger the company the more they don't mind f-ing over their employees. There's nothing personal about it at all; it's [gag] "just business." Taking it personally just makes it feel like a worse f-over, at least to me. I'd rather think they [not my own employer here, just a generic "they"] just view employees as totally interchangeable sheep: once they're shorn, they all look alike, aren't particularly useful, and can easily be replaced by one of hundreds of still-unshorn sheep waiting patiently just outside the door.

On the other hand, I certainly wouldn't argue that smiling about being shorn is good for one's emotional health, either.

Again, please accept my apology if I sounded inappropriately harsh.


@magic cave: no harsh feelings. Thanks for your insight :)