Want a Raise? Find Out What Your Job is Worth

Last Updated Sep 20, 2010 9:06 AM EDT

As a blogger, I get paid in bags of stale Tootsie Rolls. Is that good? I have no idea. Actually, I am getting a better idea of what my job is worth now that I have checked out some salary comparison sites. Specifically, I've found out that there are places you can blog where you're paid in fresh Tootsie Rolls.

If you want to see how your salary compares to the industry at large, be sure to visit MySalary, a site where you can find salary ranges for virtually any career. There's a lot of stuff on the site -- job search and education information in particular -- but be sure to click the Salary tab and enter your job title and zip code. You'll instantly get access to a slew of job titles that are similar to what you searched for.

The resulting histogram shows national averages for salary ranges, like this one for speech writers (I always wanted to know what Ben Stein used to make).

If you enter your zip code, the graph will zero in on salaries specific to your region. And if you click the other tabs on the page, additional tables show how the job stacks up when you factor in bonuses and benefits.

Not only is MySalary a handy calibration tool to help you size up job offers and research the justification for your next raise, but it's a great tool for your college-aged kids to feel out what to major in. My own daughter has been using it, for example, to run numbers for all sorts of potential career options.