It’s summer in Central New York and we’re all thinking about taking time off work to enjoy the sunshine. If your summer includes a job search, you may want to consider benefits such as vacation time when you’re making decisions about where to apply and what type of job you’ll accept.
Most companies offer some benefits to their employees in addition to their hourly wage or salary. Because benefits are a type of compensation that does not come in the form of a paycheck, many people overlook their value. Determining the types of benefits that are important to you can be a factor in the type of employment you pursue. Larger private companies tend to offer a wider range of benefits than smaller employers or non-profit agencies. Common benefits packages include health insurance, paid time off (sick leave, vacation time, paid holidays), and retirement plans. Many companies mention the types of benefits they offer in their job postings or on the company website.
In addition to the benefits offered directly by the employer, certain occupations also offer opportunities based on specific types of work. For example, it is common for first responders, military personnel, and teachers to get discounts for goods and services. Jobs in public service, including local and state government and public education, may offer the opportunity for student loan forgiveness when certain conditions are met. Some companies offer employee discounts on the merchandise they sell or produce.
While a first interview is not the best time to ask about specific benefits, asking a general question about the benefits of working with the company can tell you a lot about the job, company culture, and how the position may affect your quality of life. If you are called for a second interview or offered a job, asking about specific benefits can help you determine if a job is right for you.
(For more help on acing interviews, you can check out our post here.)
Benefits can affect everything from work-life balance to your cost of living. Making a list of benefits that are non-negotiable and those you’re willing to compromise can be helpful as you look for your newest job.
If you need assistance with your job search, please contact your local Career Center. We are here to help, and all our services are absolutely free!