Even in lean job markets, job seekers shouldn’t sell themselves short. It can be very easy for companies to build a compelling case by attaching a certain number to wage or salary information. But have you looked carefully at their benefits?
What looks like a high-paying job might not be so stellar, especially if competitors offer stock options, employee discounts, education credits, a 401K, vacation, and detailed health insurance plans. Once you include benefits into your calculations, a different job might become your primary focus. Here are some benefits to watch out for during your search for employment.
Investing in your company’s stocks has the potential to pay off over the long term. Some companies give their employees access to discounted purchasing programs, so that you’re able to accumulate stock purchases faster than non-employees. Generally, these employee stock programs take a certain percentage of your wages, setting it aside to buy stocks at the beginning of a purchase cycle. If your prospective employer offers stock plans, keep then do research about the history of this stock and its trends. These stocks can be particularly useful if you earn dividends on them. You can either withdraw the taxable dividends for use once you receive them, or reinvest the dividends to purchase more stock. Keep in mind that stock benefits still come with associated risks – there’s no guarantee that these options will bring you a profit over the long run.
Some employer offer education reimbursement benefits to employees who want to attend college or certificate courses to gain professional skills. Generally, companies will only pay for courses that are directly related to your work tasks. If a company is offering you a job, find out if you’ll have access to continuing education. These benefits can be a major financial boon, especially if you were already planning to enroll in college classes or certificate programs.
401K Contribution Match
Have you been thinking about your future retirement during your job search? This is an aspect that many people forget in the rush to address their immediate needs. A 401K plan helps employees put aside funds for their upcoming retirement. Many companies offer a 401K contribution match program as a benefit, because they will match a certain percentage of your 401K contribution. This can significantly increase your savings power, especially if you’re able to contribute a significant portion of your wages each year. Just make sure that you stay within your 401K annual contribution limits!
When people consider insurance benefits, they often think about physician appointments, dental work, eyewear coverage, and prescription coverage. However, there are multiple facets to insurance plans that we only consider in very specific situations. For example, workers compensation benefits can be significantly helpful if you are injured while performing your job. This can include time off and compensation during your recovery.
It is vital that you examine your comprehensive insurance benefits before accepting a job. Sickness, injury, and medical conditions can take a toll on your ability to work and earn wages. Employers that do not invest in the health and well-being of their workers are often plagued by high turnover rates, as employees leave to find jobs with better insurance benefits.
Wages aren’t the only way an organization provides compensation. You must also factor in benefits, which can significantly improve your overall quality of life and help you save money. Before you decide to accept a job offer, make sure you thoroughly consider benefits like stock options, insurance, education programs, and 401K options. Benefit examinations can help you decide whether it’s worth pursuing a job or moving onto new career opportunities.
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