we interview for a job or ask for a promotion, the number one thing most
employees think about is the increase in salary. After all, everyone wants to
make more money. However, cash isn’t the only benefit you should consider when
evaluating a new position.
are five big work benefits that can dramatically improve your life.
Surprisingly, none of them are related to your actual salary.
1. An Abundance of PTO
The average number of PTO days for employees who’ve completed a year of service is only 10 days. Go on a couple of vacations and attend a wedding or two and you’re completely out of paid time off for the rest of the year. Yikes.
Denmark, you earn an average of two days of PTO for every month you work,
totalling up to about 24 days annually. That’s more than double what we
Americans get on average. The country also has the happiest employees in the
entire world, as well as the healthiest work-life balance. Coincidence? I think
the sake of your sanity and health, value your PTO days as if they were a
monetary gift. Perhaps you didn’t get that five grand raise you were asking
for, but can you negotiate for some extra vacation time? That spontaneous trip
to Hawaii will probably do more wonders for your psyche than a small raise ever
2. Work-From-Home Privileges
you know that more than 3.7 million employees work from home at least half
the time? If you’re with a fairly flexible company, scoring a few days in which
you can work remotely might not be difficult. That means less time spent
waiting in traffic and less money spent on tolls and gas while commuting to the
office. Don’t discount those financial benefits – they add up.
Additionally, remote workers report being
happier than other workers. Ask yourself if you’d be less stressed and more
content if you were able to work from home at least part-time. If the answer is
yes, then you should value that benefit as much as a raise.
3. A 401K With a Good Company Match
half of all Americans have yet to begin planning for
retirement. If you’re included in that number, then it’s time to get into gear
and figure out how you can play catch-up on your 401K. You’ll be 65 before you
know it, and you don’t want to wind up stressing about money when you should be
enjoying your retirement.
to see if you can score a company match at your new job or with your current
employer. A match is essentially free money that company contributes to your
savings as long as you’re contributing, too. Think about it this way: if a
company says they’ll match three percent of your salary, and you make $40K a
year, then that’s an extra $1,200 going toward your savings! That might be
better than the raise you could potentially snag.
4. Wellness Benefits
you find a job that offers a free gym membership? Weekly massages? Catered
lunches? Any of these benefits could be considered a part of your “wellness” as
an employee, and believe it or not, they’re worth their weight in gold.
recent years, it’s been found that 80 percent of employees would actually
choose additional benefits over a
pay raise. This could be attributed to a number of reasons, but personally, I
like to think it’s because younger generations are placing an emphasis on
health and happiness, not just their careers. You might miss that raise, but if
you can benefit personally from the job’s wellness offerings, then it might be
a fair trade-off.
5. Savings and Spending Accounts
companies offer additional ways to pocked money, including flexible spending
accounts, health savings accounts, and retirement accounts. We already talked
about 401ks, so let’s touch on the other two. A flexible spending account and a
health saving account can both help you pay for medical expenses.
why you need a whole different account to pay for medical expenses? Because you
can invest the funds! Consider this: if you set aside $100/month for medical
expenses in your HSA, then you could have a nice safety net in case you get
sick or injured. Additionally, you could invest the funds while they wait to be
used, so you’re actually making money on the funds you have set away. It’s a
you’re considering a job, don’t just look at the salary. There are many other
benefits that could improve your life and financial situation. Some might be
even more valuable than a one or two thousand dollar raise, so be flexible in
your negotiations and get creative if you have to. Request benefits just as
much as you would request money. You’ll thank yourself later.