Not only does your salary allow you to live your life to a certain standard physically, but it can also be a big contributing factor in how you feel mentally and emotionally. Everyone wants to feel valued for the work they do, and one of the easiest ways to reflect this appreciation is through your pay. However, pay has been a taboo topic for years, making it difficult to know what your true value is or should be to your employer or within your industry. So to help make finding your value a little easier, here are three things you can do to discover how much you should be getting paid for your work.
Know How Value Is Defined
If you’re expecting to just find one solid number to tell you how much you should be getting paid in your current position, you may need to take some time to truly understand how people define what value is to a specific company. According to Jack Chapman, a contributor to TheLadders.com, the fair market value for a position is a collaboration of three numbers: your current value, your future value, and the objective value of your job. Knowing this, you should be able to come up with ballpark numbers for each category to help you discover your actual value to your company.
If you’re not sure about the objective value of your job, one way to go about researching this is to draw comparisons between your position and similar positions within other companies. To get the most accurate comparison, you’re going to want to find someone in a similar job, area, status, and company to compare with. Luckily, Erin Carson, a contributor to CNET.com, shares that websites like Glassdoor and other employment sites already have data collected from various sources to make drawing these comparisons a lot easier. All you have to do is input your information and you can see how you compare to salary averages for people in similar circumstances as yourself.
Discreetly Speak With Co-workers
While finding out what others are paid within your industry can help you see where your value should fall, arguably the best information you can get to help you see what your true value is within your own company is to speak to your co-workers. However, this practice is often frowned up. Therefore, Jacquelyn Smith, a contributor to Forbes.com, suggests talking discreetly to a trusted co-worker to try to get just enough information so you can see the salary range you may be in within your company. This could help you to know if you’re being underpaid or if your salary matches up with how much you value your own work for the company. Just remember, talking about salaries at work can be tricky, so tread carefully.
If you think your pay doesn’t adequately represent your contribution to your company, consider using some of the tips mentioned above to discover just how much you should be worth to your employer.