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What To Do When You Don't Get A Raise

Updated on March 16, 2015
Kristine Manley profile image

Kris Manley is a blogger, author, and speaker. She's a guest on radio in the U.S., Canada, and overseas, as well as a guest on network TV.


Raises from employers don't come easy nowadays, so what is an employee to do? Does it seem that only executive or senior management is privy to raises while the "grunt" workers are overlooked - I don't mean to sound upset, sorry. Fight back nicely, slowly, and undetected. Lay low, do your research, then strike. How? Find other areas in your company that can make you more valuable to the company, make you the "go to" person, or will benefit your family.

Here are 9 things you can pursue within your company in lieu of a raise.

  1. Training (free) - find out where you can take free training in your field. Webinars are fun and can be done in groups. Where I work we use the conference room which has a large TV hooked up to the Internet. Suggest to your boss that there will be a free Webinar on a specific topic that you think your department can benefit from - if he or she says yes, set the meeting up for your department by sending out an agenda and Webinar topic. Also there are free classes at colleges and universities that are offered to the public. Some industries, e.g. food manufacturing, software developers, hospitality, etc., sometimes use college and university classrooms to hold free training for industry professionals. I've gone to training and question and answer sessions where there was free lunch. I was away from my desk for about an hour and a half, and my boss loved that I went and could use the information as a tool in my job.
  2. Certifications - search for online or correspondence certificate programs which cost less than regular classroom attendance courses. Besides, regular classroom attendance courses cause you excessive time out of the office.
  3. Company Credit Union - join it for low rates on car and home owner's insurance, low interest rate loans, Christmas Clubs, Vacation Clubs and more. I use my company's Christmas Club to save money because the only time I can access my money is around November. As a member of management we can get signature loans - this is better than going to the bank and trying to get a loan.
  4. Cross-Training - learn more than your job. Find another area in the company in which you would like to assist and do it, and as you begin to learn more in another area don't forget to put it on your resume. Once you've learned something new and can assist in other departments let it be known.
  5. Management Physicals - some companies offer paid physicals to their management team - my company does. If this is not the case for you, and your company has Health Fairs, participate in them. At Health Fairs there may be free blood pressure checks, free eye exams, free Mammograms, and free Glucose testing, and these tests are performed by nurses and doctors with some of your test results given to you on the spot.
  6. Discount Tickets to events - if your company offers discount tickets to events, get the tickets if the events are something you and your family will enjoy.
  7. Company contests and give-aways; enter them. Several employees where I work have won 32 inch Flat Screen TVs, vacuum cleaners, expensive tool sets, days off with pay, gas cards, dinner gift cards, gift cards for grocery stores, and paid health insurance for a year, just to name a few.
  8. Scholarships - some companies offer college scholarships for employees and employees' children with some ranging from $500 to $1,000, maybe more. Ask your Human Resources department, if applicable.
  9. Work all the overtime you can, if you can paid for it. Some people like going home after 40 hours of work, but if you need the extra cash and your company can use an extra hand in handling an assignment, then sign up.

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    • Kristine Manley profile image

      Donna Kristine 6 years ago from Atlanta, GA

      Hi stephaniedas, you are exacting right about people not knowing what's available to them at work - it's so important to do some digging. Thanks

    • stephaniedas profile image

      Stephanie Das 6 years ago from Miami, US

      I like this collection of tips. There are lot of services that people don't take advantage of because they simply don't know about them.

    • Kristine Manley profile image

      Donna Kristine 6 years ago from Atlanta, GA

      Hi Cloverleaf, my boss is always up for free training. I have come across some really good free training in my field. Thanks

    • Cloverleaf profile image

      Cloverleaf 6 years ago from Calgary, AB, Canada

      Kristine, I enjoyed reading your article. Applying for free training is an excellent idea. There are so many free resources available online these days, and it always helps to show your boss that you are willing to learn. Voted up!