Questioning your salary or wage is healthy – you need to know if you’re being paid enough and, let’s face it, it’s not like your employer is going to tell you if you’re being underpaid! So this requires a bit of detective work. You’re not going to find your answer in one place. You’ll need to dig around in several places to work out if your paycheque is fair before thinking about negotiating a higher salary.
Use these methods to find out if you’re being paid your worth:
- Use national data
- Use a salary checker
- Check similar positions within the same company
- Discuss with colleagues
- Assess your own role
- Speak with recruiters
6 ways to work out if you’re underpaid
Use national data
In the UK, the ONS is one of the best places to go to for data, including data on salaries and wages. Using their data, you’ll be able to look up the average UK salary for a specific year, industry, occupation and location. You can even check the average salaries for certain age groups.
Use a salary checker
Salary checkers are a great tool to find out the average pay across several job titles. Salary checkers tend to use job vacancies to find the average salary for a certain role. You’ll find different websites will vary in their answers, so it’s best to use a few different salary checkers to gain a general consensus. And make sure you filter by location, as this is one of the factors that can influence your pay. Here are our favourite salary checkers:
Check internal vacancies
Keep your eyes peeled for any internal vacancies. Checking your company’s vacancies is a smart way to see if you’re underpaid within your own company. It could be that your employer is cheekily paying other people more than you, even though you’re doing similar roles or have the same level of experience.
Discuss with colleagues
We know discussing salary with other colleagues is kinda taboo. But that’s all it is. It’s not illegal to discuss salaries with coworkers. But you do need to tread carefully. Make sure you read our guide on asking your colleagues how much money they make.
Assess your own role
Sometimes you don’t have to look far to work out if you’re underpaid. If you’ve recently been given extra responsibilities, you’ll almost certainly be due a pay rise. Similarly, if you’ve become more skilled in your work or gained new qualifications and can therefore provide your employer with more value, your salary should reflect this.
Speak with recruiters
Recruiters are a great source of information. They spend all day talking to different candidates and companies, so they can be really knowledgeable about salaries. Just make sure you speak to a recruiter that specialises in your industry.
What to do if you’re underpaid
So you’ve spent all this time researching only to discover you are, in fact, underpaid. What do you do now?
Firstly, don’t feel disheartened. This is a good discovery to make. You’re due a pay rise! To put it simply, you can try to negotiate a higher salary with your employer if you like where you work and enjoy your role. Or you can take this as an opportunity to apply for positions elsewhere in the industry. The choice is yours!
Time to climb
If you’re not being paid enough, it’s time to make a positive change. If your current employer won’t pay you your worth, someone else will! To find well-paid jobs near you, log into the SonicJobs app and access thousands of vacancies across the UK. Job searching has never been simpler!
Psst… did you know you can apply for jobs with 1 tap on our app? No long application forms or third party websites – that’s a promise!