Your Life

Non-cash benefits that rival a pay rise

- November 24, 2021 3 MIN READ
Non-cash benefits that rival a pay rise

If the boss knocks back your request for a pay rise, here are some non-cash benefits to ask for instead.

I’ve talked about how to ask the boss for a pay rise, but it can be a long shot in the current climate. Many businesses are rebuilding after being financially decimated by lockdowns.

That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be fairy compensated if you feel you deserve more. Here are some non-cash benefits to suggest instead. They won’t break the boss’s bank, but can still make a big difference to your lifestyle. Hopefully they will fill the gap until your employer finally comes to the table with more money.

Salary packaging

Salary packaging is an agreement between an employer and an employee where the employee forgoes part of their wages in order to receive non-cash benefits of a similar value.

The main advantage of salary packaging is that it reduces the amount of income tax you have to pay, as the money is taken out of your pre-tax wages.

Some of the most common and popular packaging arrangements include salary sacrificing into superannuation to boost retirement savings, funding a car lease or buying a laptop or mobile phone.

Check with your employer to see whether they offer salary packaging as a benefit, and what items they have selected for their employees to package.

Personal development

Rather than just asking your employer to pay you more, why not ask them to invest in your development?

They may be more willing to fund this if they believe the skills you gain will make you a more effective employee and help build their business and profits.

Check whether your employer has relationships with education providers or training organisations. Or see if they run in-house development workshops that you could benefit from.

It’s a business expense for the boss as staff training comes with tax advantages.

Intangible benefits

While it’s hard to put an exact dollar value on intangible benefits, improving your work situation can be priceless in terms of your overall happiness and wellbeing.

For example, flexible working hours or the ability to work from home one day a week could do wonders for your lifestyle and family life. It can help manage the stresses of life outside work that little bit better.

Just remember, if you are offered intangible working benefits, don’t abuse them.

If people start to think that you’re slacking off or taking advantage of these new privileges, it could reduce your chances of receiving an actual pay rise at your performance review.

Performance-based benefits

While improving your performance-based benefits does have financial implications to the employer, they aren’t immediate. They’re also generally tied to a successful outcome for the business.

These two factors could make your employer more likely to agree to them now.

If you are going down this road, have a plan before stepping into a room with the boss. Consider what success looks like in your role and always tie things back to how the business will benefit.

Take the initiative

If you’ve got nothing to show for all of your efforts, it’s time to take matters into your own hands.

For starters, have you maximised what you’re doing with the money you do have now? If you haven’t developed a budget and a savings plan, get onto it and start putting money aside. If you do, consider investing it and start building real long-term wealth.

You can also think about whether there are ways to earn an extra income outside of your 9-to-5 role. Do you have any passions or hobbies that could be turned into a money-making scheme after hours, for example?

Finally, if you see no way to improve things, then you can always look for a new job. That way you can negotiate a pay rise during the hiring process.