Nearly two in five HR managers (39 percent) say it's common for their company to offer employees promotions without salary increases, according to new research from staffing firm OfficeTeam.
That's a 17-point jump from a similar 2011 survey.
How do professionals feel about this practice? Nearly two-thirds of workers (64 percent) reported they'd be willing to accept an advanced title that doesn't include a raise, up from 55 percent in 2011.
"One way employers can motivate and retain their workers is by providing advancement opportunities to those who have excelled in their positions," said Brandi Britton, a district president for OfficeTeam. "Awarding promotions without raises isn't ideal, but budgets are often a limiting factor. The employee's existing salary may also be a consideration, particularly if they're already making an above-market rate."
Britton added, "Professionals should look at the full picture when offered a title change that doesn't include a bump in pay. That means assessing whether they're ready for the challenge, excited about the work and able to negotiate other perks to sweeten the deal."
OfficeTeam offers five tips for workers when considering accepting a promotion without a raise:
- Get the details. Discuss the new role's responsibilities and expectations with your boss before making a decision.
- Weigh the pros and cons. Think about whether the position aligns with your personal and professional aspirations.
- Request a follow-up. Ask for a compensation review in three to six months.
- Check on other incentives. Aside from pay, you may be able to negotiate a flexible schedule, extra vacation time, a bigger bonus, professional development opportunities or stock options.
- Decline gracefully. If you decide to turn down a promotion, diplomatically explain how staying in your current role is better for you and the company.
Another thing in favor of accepting these deals: a loftier job title may help you get a similar job at another company - one with an appropriately higher level of pay.