Employee Benefits: What Benefits Can I Ask For?

A recent survey of about 1000 employees revealed that a majority of them feel that benefits at work make them more motivated and productive. In fact, the same survey revealed that every one in four employees has left a job because of a lack of workplace benefits.

As an employee, it is important to have an idea of what benefits you are legally entitled to as well as some reasonable additional benefits you could ask for.

Statutory Benefits

These are benefits employees are legally entitled to and will be part of any role in any organisation they join. These will include:

  • Paid Leave

28 days leave minimum which includes bank holidays, for full-time employees. For part-time employees, the holiday entitlement is calculated keeping into account how many days or hours they work.

  • Maternity/Paternity Leave

Pregnant employees can take 26 weeks off for ordinary maternity leave and another 26 days for additional leave (in total 52 weeks). They must also mandatorily take two weeks off after childbirth. Eligible partners and fathers are entitled to two weeks off.

  • Pension

Most employees are auto-enrolled into the company pension scheme as they join. In such schemes, the minimum contribution by the employer has to be 3% but this can be more depending on the organisation.

  • Sick Pay

If an employee is off sick for more than 4 consecutive working days, they will be entitled to sick pay and don’t need to provide a fit note. If an employee is off for more than seven days, medical evidence or a fit note may be needed.

Additional Benefits You Can Ask For

  1. Flexible working

If your role isn’t hybrid/remote or you wish to make changes to your hybrid/remote working model, especially if it’s for childcare or caring for any dependents, it is worth discussing with your employer. You are allowed to ask for flexible working from day one of your job.

  1. Insurance

Medical insurance is another additional benefit offered by a majority of organisations, where employers enrol employees as they join. However, if your organisation does not have any insurance schemes, you may inquire about it to see if your organisation plans on setting it up.

Remember, your circumstances may change during the course of employment (marriage, childbirth, adoption etc.). If you are not sure, make sure to ask employers if the insurance extends to your family as well.

  1. Long-Term Incentive Plans (LTIP)

Employee retention is crucial for the business to run smoothly and successfully, and in order to retain employees, companies need to create long-term incentive plans.

If this is not something you have discussed with your employer as you start a role, it is worth asking about. Some examples of LTIPs include signing bonuses, bonuses for specific goals, awards or share schemes.

  1. Professional Development

More often than not, companies have conferences, workshops and development opportunities in place. However, in case your company does not have any of that, you should look at development opportunities yourself that you can discuss with your employer.

Make a case for why these opportunities are beneficial for you and the organisation and ask if they will be willing to pay half or the entire cost.

  1. Travel Benefits

If you live far away and the role requires you to come in every couple of days, it can be worth asking for benefits to help you commute. This can be in the form of reimbursement for parking/petrol/public transport, travel passes, additional car allowance or even a relocation allowance.

  1. Memberships and Certifications

If your role requires you to be certified or a member of a related organisation and it is beneficial for both you and the company, it’s worth asking your employer to cover half or the entire cost of it.

If you are not sure what benefits you have, check your employment contract. For any employment law-related assistance, get in touch with our specialists today!