How to Write a Compelling Salary Increase Recommendation Letter

A well-written salary increase recommendation letter can be a powerful tool in advocating for an employee who deserves a raise. It goes beyond simply stating an opinion; it serves as a compelling document that highlights the employee’s contributions, justifies their increased value, and bolsters their request for fair compensation.

Who Can Write a Salary Increase Recommendation Letter?

Several individuals can write a salary increase recommendation letter, depending on the context:

  • Direct Supervisor: Having the most direct interaction with the employee, a supervisor holds a strong position to advocate for their performance and contributions. Their letter can speak volumes about the employee’s work ethic, achievements, and value to the team.
  • Manager: Managers oversee broader teams and can provide a high-level perspective on the employee’s impact. Their letter can highlight contributions across departments and showcase the employee’s strategic thinking and leadership qualities.
  • Client (for freelancers or contractors): When a freelancer or contractor consistently exceeds expectations and delivers exceptional results, a satisfied client’s recommendation letter can hold significant weight. It emphasizes the positive impact the employee has had on their business.
  • Colleague (with justification): While less common, a strong recommendation from a colleague can support the employee’s case, especially for team-oriented achievements or contributions beyond their immediate role. This can be particularly valuable if the colleague has witnessed the employee’s expertise firsthand.

It’s important to note that the most impactful recommendation letters typically come from individuals who have direct knowledge of the employee’s performance and can provide specific examples.

What to Include in Salary Increase Recommendation Letter

An effective salary increase recommendation letter should present a clear and concise case for why the employee deserves a raise. Here’s what to include:

  • A. Employee Information
    • Employee Name: Clearly state the employee’s full name for easy reference.
    • Job Title: Indicate the employee’s current job title to provide context for their achievements.
    • Length of Employment (optional): Including the employee’s tenure can be helpful, especially if highlighting long-term commitment and consistent performance.
  • B. Employee Performance Highlights

This is the heart of the letter. Focus on specific achievements and contributions that demonstrate the employee’s value. Here are some key areas to consider:

  • Quantifiable Results: Numbers speak volumes. Did the employee increase sales by 20%? Streamline a process that saved the company $10,000? Quantify their achievements whenever possible.
  • Exceeding Expectations: Did the employee consistently go above and beyond their job description? Did they take initiative on a critical project that delivered exceptional results?
  • Taking on Additional Responsibilities: Did the employee readily adopt additional tasks or responsibilities beyond their role? This demonstrates their adaptability and willingness to go the extra mile.
  • Positive Impact on Projects or Teams: Highlight how the employee’s contributions positively impacted specific projects or the overall team performance. Did they spearhead a successful campaign or mentor junior colleagues?
  • C. Market Value Justification (optional)

While not always necessary, you can strengthen your argument by referencing industry benchmarks. Briefly mention the current market value for the employee’s position based on reliable salary data sources like [invalid URL removed] or Glassdoor. This demonstrates your awareness of fair compensation within the industry.

  • D. Recommendation

Clearly state your recommendation for a raise. This is the most crucial part of the letter. Be specific:

  • Recommend a specific raise percentage.
  • Alternatively, you can propose a desired salary range if you lack precise data on market value.

Tips for Writing a Strong Letter

  • Professional Tone and Format: Maintain a professional tone throughout the letter. Use formal language and avoid slang or informal expressions. Ensure proper formatting with clear sections and a professional layout.
  • Focus on Facts and Specific Examples: Don’t rely on generic statements. Back your claims with concrete examples and quantifiable data whenever possible. This strengthens your argument and makes the employee’s achievements tangible.
  • Proofread Carefully: Typos and grammatical errors can undermine the professionalism of your letter. Proofread meticulously before submitting the document.

Salary Increase Recommendation Letter Sample

Your Name
Your Title
Company Name
Company Address


Recipient Name
Recipient Title
Company Name
Company Address

Dear [Recipient Name],

I am writing to formally recommend a salary increase for [Employee Name], [Job Title], who has consistently exceeded expectations in their role. [He/She/They] has been with [Company Name] for [Number] years and has demonstrated exceptional dedication, skill, and valuable contributions to our team.

Employee Performance Highlights:

[Specific Achievement 1]: Briefly describe the achievement and its impact. Quantify the results if possible (e.g., increased sales by 15%, reduced processing time by 20%).
[Specific Achievement 2]: Highlight another noteworthy accomplishment and its positive outcome.
[Exceeding Expectations]: Provide an example of how the employee consistently went above and beyond their job description.
[Taking on Additional Responsibilities]: If applicable, mention instances where the employee readily took on additional tasks beyond their normal role.
[Employee Name]'s positive impact extends beyond their individual responsibilities. [He/She/They] actively participates in team projects and consistently demonstrates a willingness to help colleagues. Their positive attitude and collaborative spirit contribute significantly to the overall team morale and productivity.

Market Value Justification (Optional):

[If you choose to include market value justification, you can add a sentence or two here.]


Based on [Employee Name]'s outstanding performance, dedication, and valuable contributions to [Company Name], I strongly recommend a salary increase of [Percentage] or a new salary range of [Range]. [He/She/They] consistently demonstrates a commitment to excellence and is a valuable asset to our team. I am confident that [Employee Name] will continue to make significant contributions to the company's success in the future.

Thank you for your time and consideration. I am happy to discuss this recommendation further at your convenience.


[Your Signature (if sending a physical copy)]

[Your Typed Name]

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