Office Perks and Politics
At the end of each month you take home your pay packet, Mr. Taxman takes his hefty slice and you use the remainder as you feel fit, or as your bank manager deems appropriate.
However the satisfaction of knowing that a job has been well done and your pay packet in the bank are not the only benefits you can earn for your endeavors. Today, we will cover briefly on office perks and politics.
Employers can provide a range of perks with which they hope to attract quality staff and to retain their current workforce. Company cars, free lunches, event tickets are just some of the things that your company could provide for you to make you feel more settled at work.
Office perks can broadly come in the two forms. There are good things about your job that influenced your decision to accept the post; these can include office location and employer geniality, even a nice canteen. There are also additional perks that may come later or as add-on incentives such as company cars and mobile phones.
With bartering power, you can potentially negotiate a very attractive package for yourself, make sure you don’t underestimate your value or by the same token push for unrealistic benefits.
Perks that are intrinsic to the job
You accept a position because of the tasks that comprise the job appeal. However, there are other considerations that you will have taken into account before signing on the dotted line, for example, location, office atmosphere, dress code, and attitude of existing employees. If these factors are favourable they can all be considered ‘perks’ of the job.
Perks that can be related to the job include:
- Laptop/Personal Computer for use in the office – possibly at home
- Performance-driven team-building excursions
- Extended lunch hours/flexible work hours
- A pleasant work environment
- Attractive/favorable office location
- Internet access at work/home
- Trips abroad
- Free lunches, tickets to events
These perks cannot usually be negotiated, as they are part and parcel of the job. However, situations may arise under which these factors may change. For example, your company might relocate offices or you may be given the opportunity to work from home.
These components of work can change to your detriment, as well as your favor. Company cost-cutting exercises can lead to offices being closed, the international investment being slashed – that’s no more free lunches or days on the golf course.
Additional Bonus Perks
Within competitive industries, companies can have trouble attracting enough quality candidates and so employers can offer generous bonus perks in addition to a substantial wage. These perks can be laid out on the table accompanying a job offer or can come in the form of a performance-related bonus during the course of employment.
Commonly offered job perks include:
- Share options · Mobile Phone/pager
- PDA – Personal Digital Assistant
- Extra holiday time
- Days off
- Company Car
All of these things can make the job easier and more enjoyable. Company cars, international flights, and taxis are usually offered to upper management and personnel that travel extensively during the course of their work such as external sales. Alternatively, your work may offer to pay petrol costs or a discount from a car dealership.
How to negotiate your dream package
If you are confident that the job is yours, perhaps they have offered you the position, then you can begin the process of salary negotiation. The type of perk, just like salary level, is determined by the industry into which you are applying and the level of responsibility the post holds.
If you are an office clerk it is rare that you will be offered a company car, and if you request other similar benefits you will most probably be unsuccessful.
Perks are offered to candidates who have good experience behind them, and as such are highly sought after in their respective fields.
If you are offered a satisfactory salary package but one that does not contain the desired company car or share package, do not just stay quiet about it.
Without appearing greedy, suggest that you receive these additional benefits. The employer will discuss the practicality of your request – in the end, you have nothing to lose.
You should, however, assess whether your requirements are realistic. As mentioned you cannot expect wonderful benefits if you are very low on the career ladder.
Not all perks are good
Candidates should be aware that there could be a downside to receiving this sort of bonus perk. During the height of the Dot Com boom, companies with few assets but highly enviable share prices offered their employees share options in addition to and in some cases supplementing a generous wage packet.
Subsequently, many of these companies have seen their share price fall to a fraction of their previous value and employees have been left with practically worthless paper certificates.
Company cars can incur tax implications and with a company mobile phone, you will be contactable outside of the office.
A certain amount of politics can come into play when accepting perks. The office environment is a very competitive place and jealousy is common. If you are offered a brand new BMW how will your colleagues react?
No one likes a greedy person if you are going to make demands for additional perks after you have been in a job for a period make sure you feel that you deserve them.
Finally, before you accept any form of additional perk consider the implications, will you really be better off?
-Thanks a lot for reading our article – Office Perks and Politics. Hopefully, you read and enjoy it. Have a good day!