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Salary isn’t everything when it comes to a job. While money is obviously still a very important factor, non-salary benefits can be equally, if not more valuable.
There are quite a few things you can negotiate for including flexible work schedules, health benefits, paid time off, travel reimbursement, and education. According to a recent CareerBuilder survey, both location and affordable benefits ranked higher than salary as factors that matter most to employees. While there may not be a direct deposit of money into your bank account from these things, their value is greater than money. Flexible work schedules give you freedom and time, and health benefits give you peace of mind and can save you thousands of dollars in medical bills.
To get these benefits, you’ll have to ask for them. How you should approach the conversation depends on whether you’re starting a new job or still working at your current company. Michelle Armer, Chief People Officer at CareerBuilder, shares her tips on how to negotiate for non-salary benefits.
Negotiating for benefits at a new job:
“You should approach the conversation with a potential employer once the company has decided move forward with offering you the job. The easiest time to negotiate non-salary benefits, such as more paid time off or more flexibility to work remotely when necessary, is during the job offer period before you sign the offer letter. Since the company has decided they want to hire you, they are more than likely to work with you on accommodating your benefit needs. If you need to offer reasoning behind why you want those extra three days of vacation time, a good way is to back it up is to tell your potential employer it’s what you’re receiving at your current job.”
Negotiating for benefits at your current job:
“The best time to negotiate these benefits at your current job is to wait for the right time, such as an annual review or a performance check-in; this is when you normally discuss everything you have contributed to the company, and will help better your chances for getting those extra vacation days.”
Before you go into your negotiation, make sure you’re prepared. For a new job, do your homework by researching the company online to get a feel for the company culture, and see if there’s any mention of workplace perks and benefits. You can also use the job interview to learn more and get a better sense of the company’s policies.
For your current job, figure out who the right person to speak with is. You can always enlist your manager or supervisor to help you with this and to put in a good word. Prepare a solid case as to why you’re asking for new benefits and how they’d be of value. It can be tougher to get benefits in an existing job than at a new one, so be patient and also persistent. Following up is critical to make sure your request doesn’t fall through the cracks.
Armer also offers up invaluable advice for keeping your emotions in check during this process. “It is important to remember that whether or not a company decides to accommodate your requests, it never has to do with you personally. Some companies don’t allow any flexibility when it comes to benefits. The follow up time will differ depending on if it is a new job offer or a current job negotiation. If it is a new job offer, usually a few days later is a good time to follow up. If you’re negotiating at your current job, I recommend waiting two weeks before sending a follow up.”
Next time a negotiation comes around, remember to think beyond salary and explore all of the benefits that are available.
May 31, 2019 at 05:04PM
Forbes – Entrepreneurs