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Wednesday, January 7, 2009

How to ask for promotion and salary raise in this appraisal

It’s appraisal time! Many companies conduct periodic reviews to give feedback on performance to their employees and to assist employees in developing their career. This appraisal period may be of six months or one year depending on company policies. Performance appraisal is the right time to ask for your promotion as well as salary raise.

Why performance appraisal?

To reward employees for their good work. Appraisal will assist employees to develop in their career and enable them to reach their full potential. Performance appraisal process involves discussion on the previous year employee achievements and identifying area for improvement. This will help employees to develop clear performance objectives for the next review period.

In this article I will concentrate more on “QA performance appraisal”. What are skills and parameters used to judge and rate the QA performance?

This article will help you in following ways:

  • If you are a fresher and yet not faced any appraisal, you will get exact idea of what is performance review and how to face it.
  • If you are an experienced quality assurance engineer then you will know “How to ask for promotion and salary hike in your performance review”.
  • How to effectively summaries your hard work and responsibilities into a good impression in front of management.

In companies having yearly appraisal system, performance appraisal process begins a month before end of each financial year. Performance review forms gets distributed to every eligible employee with instructions on how to fill the form and to whom you need to send these filled forms. After that face-to-face review meetings are scheduled with reviewers.

Following major activities get discussed in review meeting:

  • Project you did in previous year
  • Employees overall performance
  • Comments on performance ratings given by employee and reviewer
  • Employee feedback
  • Areas for improvements
  • Performance planning for the next year.

What are the criteria’s to rate the employee performance?

We are specifically speaking about QA performance appraisal, so here are the main parameters considered while rating software testers/QA persons.

Software testing skills:

1. Ability to find bugs.
2. Bug reporting skills.
3. Ability to automate work.
4. Test Cases Design Ability.
5. Testing Completeness and coverage.

Management skills:

  1. Effective role model
  2. Team motivation skill
  3. Estimation and scheduling ability
  4. Ability to anticipate and address issues
  5. Mentoring ability
  6. Planning and time management skill

Personal skills:

  1. Can work independently?
  2. Team player
  3. Self learning
  4. Discipline?
  5. Willing to learn?
  6. Takes initiative
  7. Admit mistakes?
  8. Grasping skill

    Here are some key points you need to study before asking for promotion and pay rise:

    1) What are your previous year’s top achievements?
    You should be ready with list of key projects you did in past year. How was the overall quality of work in this period? Note down some examples, which will illustrate your contribution to company growth.

    2) Positive attitude:
    Management like employees with positive attitude. Management will think about your leadership qualities before promoting you.

    3) Your relationship with your boss and co-workers:
    This is a crucial point. Make sure you don’t have any disputes between you and your boss or co-workers. You should be a fair team player.

    4) Any major work issue in previous year?
    You should be aware of project issues created by you. If these issues are major then think twice before asking for promotion or pay raise. If the issues are minor and you were not directly responsible for those issues then you can have explanation of these issues, if management raised these negative points in your appraisal meeting. Make sure you don’t blame any of your co-workers for any issue.

    5) Explain why you deserve promotion:
    You need solid work portfolio to explain this. Put forward your contribution to company and how this helped to improve the company.

    6) Are you prepared to handle challenges of senior level positions?
    Senior level position means more responsibilities. You need to have both technical as well as management skills to handle such positions. Explain how you are a best fit for the new position.

    7) Be prepared to present exact amount to be raised in your salary:
    If management is ready to promote you then you might get this question: How much pay rise you expect? So do a little study of current market salary range for your new position. Come to some exact figures by doing analysis of your current salary, company’s previous salary hike records and your accomplishments for the appraisal period.

    8 ) Know the exact time for getting pay rise:
    If you got promotion in last performance appraisal then ask for promotion in current appraisal only if you did some outstanding work. If company is in some financial problems then wait till company get out of this situation

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