Love your job or not, you might be working for less than current market value if you don’t seek out a raise. Some employees may think having seniority will automatically equal earning more annually, without having to speak up for their salary, which isn’t always the case. There are some workers who may be too timid to ask for more money, out of fear they will be readily replaced. Thankfully, there are painless ways to get the raise you deserve.

Timing is everything

It pays to be an observant employee if you want to earn more money. Learn more about where you work, how well it is doing financially, and understand your boss’s ups and downs. If you know the company is doing well and exceed expectations the previous quarter, it may be advantageous to ask for a raise. Try to catch your boss when they are in a good mood, and be prepared to walk if the need arises.

Know your percentages

You may be selling yourself short and not even realizing it, especially if you are willing to take a percentage less than 15%. Depending on your company’s budget and size, money may be too tight to risk giving you a raise. Your boss may play the odds in their favor, by letting the employee choose the percentage they think they deserve. Seek out an increase in pay between 10 to 20% of your current rate, or be willing to compromise for a shorter work week and more paid vacation days for a lower percentage.

Convince the boss

Doing the bare minimum at work just won’t cut it, so you will need to know what to do to prove your worth at work. You deserve more money if you are taking on the assignments everyone else runs away from, you always bring in new clients, and you save the company money. If you are doing too much and are underpaid, prepare to walk to a new gig.

Understand market value

It’s great to land an entry-level job that pays well right after school. After the two-year mark, you may want to evaluate your worth, salary, and skill set. Chances are you should be making more money after you paid your dues. Check out a site like Payscale to learn about the average salary for your occupation compared to geographical location. Get the leverage you need to get the raise you want.

Spruce up your stats

Being a loyal employee has its perks, but staying at the same job for over two years can equal less money over the long-run. Consider updating your resume, gain in-demand skills employers want and don’t forget to network. If your current job can’t pay you what you are worth, you may earn up to 20% more when you switch jobs.