It is increasingly common for workers to change their job every few years. Research shows that young employees entering the job market tend to change jobs an average of 5.7 times. One of the main reasons cited for leaving a job is an employee’s pay and remuneration.
From an employer’s perspective, offering a remuneration package is not just about attracting new talent; it should be an essential part of a holistic approach to staff retention. Employees will be likely to assess the package that is on offer from an employer, to ensure that it is fair and reasonable.
A collection of incentives
A remuneration package is the complete bundle of pay, benefits and perks given (or offered) to an employee. It can typically include a range of options and incentives, in addition to the employee’s salary:
- Bonuses, commission, and performance-related pay
- Expense reimbursements and fuel allowances
- Accommodation and utilities allowances
- A mobile phone
- Childcare and healthcare
- Company shares or other cash incentives
- An enhanced pension provision
- An enhanced annual leave entitlement
Popular remuneration incentives
Remuneration packages vary between organisations, and for different positions. Different benefits and incentives may be offered, in addition to salary, that suit the level and nature of the role, and make the position attractive and competitive in relation to the job market.
The salary element should be fair and competitive. When assessing this, you should consider working hours, market pay rates, and whether pay will be fixed or variable, according to performance.
These may also include a variety of options, e.g.
- health, dental and vision insurance,
- wellness programmes (e.g. gym membership),
- pet insurance,
- savings plans,
- disability and life insurance.
Wellbeing benefits have risen in popularity over recent years. These may include subscriptions to mental health platforms, or time out of the office for wellbeing activities such as counselling or walk-and-talk meetings.
Employers may choose to opt in to government-run promotions, which can be included in a remuneration package.
For example, the cycle to work scheme is a government tax exemption programme that was introduced to promote better health and reduce pollution. It means employers can loan cycles and safety equipment to employees as a tax-free benefit.
More than ever before, particularly in a post-pandemic world, employees are trying to achieve a better work-life balance. Reduced travelling times (or the option to travel off-peak) and the ability to meet family commitments are some of the factors. Remuneration that reflects these needs will be more attractive than packages that don’t.
Other remuneration benefits
Making a benefit match the circumstances of a position is key. Relocation and housing assistance may be an obvious perk to offer an employee who may have to move to another geographic region for work. An executive coaching programme may appeal to those who aspire to a senior leadership role.
Career progression is an important consideration, as a lack of prospects is a common reason for employees to change jobs. Addressing this within a remuneration package could provide a compelling reason for an employee to stay.
Remuneration and the law
Benefits and perks don’t have to be substantial to be meaningful. However, any payments must be fair, correct and timely. They also need to be documented and taxed accurately.
Other than in certain limited circumstances, discriminatory practices should not and cannot contribute to any variances between employees.
It’s quite common for a remuneration package and pay to be reviewed and increased on an annual basis. However, employees may not be legally entitled to an annual increase. Whether they are will depend on the terms of their employment contract. Any previous increases, and the frequency of those raises, may also play a part.
If you have any questions about the terms of your employment contract, your entitlement to a remuneration review, or need advice on the contractual implications of putting together a remuneration package for employees, our team of experienced employment solicitors can help. Get in touch today.