Do you know your benefit options?

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Compensation is a priority for anyone who’s got a job. Period.

Jobs can be rewarding, engaging and encourage personal growth as well as professional advancement, but at the end of the day, we do what we do so that we can be compensated with a paycheck and ancillary benefits.

Most of us focus on the “paycheck” part, and sometimes that focus takes away from us seeing the big picture about our total compensation package.

CareerBuilder.com has released a new survey today with a startling piece of data: Almost a quarter of the employees we surveyed (23 percent) did not pay attention to changes to their benefits at open enrollment time.

Rosemary Haefner, who’s the Vice President of Human Resources here at CareerBuilder.com, has a few suggestions for ways that workers can capitalize on these changes and make the best choices.

  • Keep benefits on your radar: Those e-mails might seem like an annoyance when you’re in the middle of work, but if you monitor these communications, you can be aware of when and how to sign up for benefits changes. Take advantage of those easily accessible opportunities to save money and stretch your paycheck farther.
  • Speak up: The HR department is there to help employees, so if you have specific questions about your benefits plan or deductions, reach out to your HR department for clarification. This will help you decide what benefits are best to keep and which are best to remove from your plan.
  • Be proactive: Ask your employer about benefits they may not offer. A company’s ability to offer or administer benefits may depend on a number of factors (like company size) but your employer may already be looking into offering things like wellness initiatives and transit benefits. Some perks are free to the company and other benefits options, like transit benefits, may provide tax savings. (Transit programs allow employees to pay for mass transit and some parking costs with pre-tax dollars.
2 Comments
  1. People often aren’t aware that benefits can make up almost 1/3 of their compensation. It’s important to review them at least twice a year to be sure they’re really performing. For many, this is open enrollment for healthcare. Make sure your medical plan will meet your needs for the coming year. Weigh the cost, copayment and coverage and anticipate any changes.

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