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Know Your Benefits


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Knowing Your Benefits

It is definitely to your benefit to know your benefits in any job you have. Despite the play on words, the benefits you receive from your employer are a major part of your compensation package and you really need to understand what they are. Every company offers its own benefit package and it can vary greatly from one business to another. It is important to know when you accept a job what that benefit package is.

In 2013 The US Bureau of Labor Statistics published some results of the National Compensation Survey so that you might better understand the trends in benefit packages offered by New York employers and make the best choices for yourself.


This is the largest and most important benefit your employer can offer you and it is changing drastically due to The Affordable Care Act. Usually, whether or not your employer provides health care depends on the size of the company you work for and if you are full or part time. 85% of full time workers have employer provided health care. Only 24% of part time workers have employer provided health care.   

When you are offered a job, look closely at what is offered in the health care package. It can vary greatly from one company to another. One company may pay for certain procedures that another company does not provide. Only 57% of small businesses offer health care to their employees but 85% of the medium and large businesses offer it.

Paid Time Off

This is a very special benefit that not everyone offers. You might be offered the traditional 2 weeks vacation or you might be in a system where you accrue paid time off and can use it by request. Some companies pay sick leave while others require you to use your paid time off when sick.

Paid holidays is another area to look closely at. It seems that if you are in a service industry you do not have paid holidays but anything but the service industry has it. 97% of management, finance and business employees get paid holidays while only 53% of service industry workers get them.

Insurance  Other Than Health

This benefit can include life insurance, disability insurance long and short term and nursing home insurance. Check the package and be sure you know what is covered and what is not as well as what the benefits are. Usually you pay for the life insurance or a part of it. Normally short term disability is paid by the company, but long term disability may or may not be covered by the company. So know what you need and know what the company is really offering. Don’t just glance over these things. 72% of full time workers have access to life insurance through their employer while only 14% of part time workers have such access, no matter who pays for the insurance.


There are other benefits to look for as well. Obviously retirement benefits are important. Is there a 401 K? Does the employer contribute? How much? Is there profit sharing or stock buying options? What about employer provided and paid for retirement planning? Some jobs have uniform allowances or expense accounts depending on the job. No matter what the benefits are, the important factor is to know and understand them.