Since the introduction of stakeholder pensions, we have seen increased emphasis on package and subsidiary benefits as market rate indicators. While salaries have remained more or less stable, the benefits that accompany them have become selling points in their own right.
For recruitment consultants, receiving a CV from a candidate that would accept less salary in return for a better package and opportunities is still a rarity, however recent market trends reflect a swing towards the benefits rich package. Our recent poll asked 'Would you accept less salary in return for better package / benefits?' The results speak for themselves:
30.88% said 'Yes, definitely', whilst 47.06% said 'Possibly'. Balance these figures against 13.24% who answered 'Probably, not' and the 8.82% that said 'Never' and you can see that well over three quarters of candidates consider the long-term benefits of a role to be at least as important as hard cash.
All of this effects the illusive ‘market rate’, especially at the junior and non-qualified levels. With pensions (incorporating life assurance) almost a given, what else can a company mention to attract the candidate when placing advertisements?
Many candidates are not looking at the entry-level position in your organisation, but are thinking of it in terms of a stepping stone to greater things within the company. Can you demonstrate an internal promotion scheme? Do you provide access courses and in-house training to facilitate this?
Training and Qualifications
Some candidates are looking to try and find a company that will support their own ambitions and help with sponsorship or study support. In the long run this is helpful to both parties: the cost of study support over 3 years in order to get a newly qualified accountant (who is incidentally well grounded in your company culture!) is substantially less than that of recruiting through professional publications, trade magazines or recruitment consultancies. If you will offer this kind of support, make mention of it.
Enhanced Pensions, Bonus Schemes or PRP
While a pension is a given, not all pension schemes are equal. Many companies have excellent and well-established company pension policies, offering hefty top-ups or flat percentage contributions. This can be worth a substantial amount over the year, and a great selling point. Equally, elements such as performance or profit-related bonuses are an excellent spur for a candidate, even though they are not guaranteed.
Many companies make mention of regular salary reviews, especially if they are conscious of a low starting wage for the advertised role. Emphasising this tells the applicant that even if the salary is low to start with, it won’t always be so.
With parking fees going through the roof, a company car park is a big selling point. For example, if parking costs around �9 per day the candidate will save �2160 per year! Relocation assistance, share save schemes, subsidised canteens, sports and social clubs, corporate gym membership schemes etc can all be mentioned to beef up a package.
In conclusion, benefits can be an excellent selling tool; the rule of thumb is to mention as much of it as you can. Remember, space is not an issue when placing roles on account4bristol, so you can be as detailed as you like.