Are you maximizing your employee benefits? Or are you at risk financially because of lack of knowledge about benefits offered on your job? Are you walking away from free money because you are not participating in benefit plans that save workers money and give free money?
According to the National Endowment for Financial Education (NEFE) many employees fail to enroll in programs that could be helpful to them and their families. Choosing benefits wisely involves determining which benefits are needed, comparing benefit plan provisions and costs, and budgeting for the expense. Coordination with a working spouse’s plan should be part of the selection process.
Generally, most employee benefits save workers money. Products like health and life insurance are provided at group rates with the employer paying part of the costs. Tax-advantaged benefits as retirement plans and flexible spending accounts reduce income taxes because they are funded with pre-tax wages. The less money you pay in taxes the more money you take home.
Free money is gained through employee benefit plans. Employer matching contributions to employees’ retirement plans is free money. Failure to contribute at least the amount of the matching contribution is forfeiting part of your compensation. The employer contribution is an “immediate” and “guaranteed” return on your investment in yourself through participation in the plan.
Paid time off is free money. It is unwise and unhealthy not to take leave for which you will be paid. Everyone needs time away from work, especially if the workplace is a stressful environment.
Take Advantage of Work Benefits
The National Endowment for Financial Education states that too often employees do not take advantage of work benefits. They either overlook or fail to understand some benefits. NEFE states that insurance is a key benefit that is often overlooked and advises parents to take advantage of the opportunity to get insurance coverage.