Yes, salaries in the hospitality industry have gone up significantly in the last year. However, not every employer is proactively handing out raises. With rising inflation and more pressures on the job, you might be asking “Is it time to ask for a raise?”. We are always in favor of knowing your worth and being compensated fairly. But there is a right way (and a wrong way) to ask.
Our hospitality recruiters share their top tips for requesting a raise:
DO Your Research
While salary websites are great places to start, they don’t always account for all of the nuances involved. Consider all factors that are specific to your exact role, property, and region:
• What is your property’s revenue?
• How many rooms are there?
• What roles do you currently perform?
• What is your local cost of living?
This can help you assess where you currently stand with pay ranges, and what size of a pay raise makes sense.
DON’T Underplay Your Request
This is your livelihood that is on the line. While it might be nerve-wracking to schedule a meeting solely to discuss a raise, it is worth it to have the full attention of your supervisor and let them know how serious you are about your request. If you truly feel that you are underpaid or have earned more in bonuses, communicate that. Tossing in the request at the end of a performance review or regular one-on-one makes it too easy for supervisors to brush off a decision.
DO Take Stock of Your Performance
Here is where you need to consider what value you bring to the company. Ask yourself, what new skills have I brought to the company in the last year? Are there any hard numbers that I can point to that show my contributions? Have I successfully taken on new responsibilities? Use these specifics to back up your request.
DON’T Create a Full Presentation
Skip the PowerPoint and multi-chapter novel about your passion for your company. Supervisors are likely juggling a lot right now, so keep things short and to the point. Lead with a pay range that you would like to be in and then back it up with a few specific reasons.
DO Time It Right
Many larger hospitality company’s pay structures and schedules are unyielding. Often larger management companies take longer to make any decision, as the chain of command is lengthy. Find out when raises generally happen in the budget process and state your case a couple of months before. This way, there is plenty of time for your request to make its way to the final decision-makers.
DON’T Freak Out If You Don’t Get It
If your manager says no, your first instinct may be to brush up your LinkedIn page and start sending out resumes. Wait! Consider that most employers are aware of the cost of turnover and will do their best to make employees happy even if they don’t have the budget for a raise. They may be willing to alter some aspect of your working conditions as a consolation.
Or maybe you missed the window to request a raise for this year and their hands truly are tied. Consider holding your supervisor to revisit the conversation at a set date. Ask what needs to happen in the meantime to ensure the raise happens.
DO Have a Backup Plan
Before you even request your raise, consider a backup plan of asking for a new or more lucrative performance-based bonus, commission, or incentive plan. Employers would rather boost compensation if it is tied to a better bottom line.
You DON’T Have to Handle It By Yourself
If you truly are at a loss of where to start, reach out for help. Consider finding a professional mentor or talking to trusted colleagues for advice.
If you and your employer cannot come to an agreement, it may be time to see what else is out there. Feel free to explore our Hospitality Career Resources and Hospitality Career Opportunities. Our hospitality recruiters will advocate for the best compensation packages for you and guide you through the entire interview process.