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Why are benefits important when looking for a new role?

If you’re thinking of changing jobs it is really important to consider the additional benefits you receive in your current role to those you may look to receive moving in to a new one. Let’s take a look at the typical profile of a software developer:

Jane is 26, she graduated when she was 22 and has been with her current employer (a large FTSE company) for the last 4 years. She’s earning £50k right now but because she works for a big company she gets a whole host of perks and benefits; she’s receiving a 5% contributory pension (so that’s worth an extra £2.5k per year), a 10% bonus at Christmas (that’s £5k per year) with additional benefits including private health care (£1,200 per year roughly), Free Bike to the value of £500 each year and 25 days holiday. So, she’s not earning £50k, she’s earning closer to £60k.

Now, there are 2 scenarios for Jane when she is seeking a new role. She either realises how much she is actually earning, or she doesn’t! In the former she realises that she is currently on a package of £60k when discussing her current package with recruiters and hiring managers, in the latter she quotes £50k.

Why is this so important though? It’s the difference between you, the applicant, being out of pocket or making sure that you are paid what you are worth. Ensure that you ask questions like ‘What are the benefits?’ and be sure to find out if there are no real benefits will that be taken in to account. Over the years I’ve done a lot of work with startups, and they very rarely have any form of benefits (after all they’re rarely cash rich as all of their money is put in to the product) so they have to compete on base salary and equity.

Finding an exciting, technically enjoyable role that compensates you correctly might seem like a daunting task, but there are people like me out there to help you find your way!