Employer Spotlight

Recruit Gen Y Stars

You need new tools to attract the new breed of talent - Experience will help you build your team with Gen Y stars.


Ease of Use

Our management dashboard helps you easily post jobs, pinpoint targeted candidates and manage your talent pipeline.


All Needles, No Hay

Don't wait for the best candidates to come to your door - with Experience, you can proactively target top talent.


Build Your Experience

Experience is your most important asset - we're here to help you find that next opportunity.


Tell Your Story

You're so much more than just your resume. Showcase your Experience.


Connections Matter

Introductions are made easy when you have Experience -- connect with alumni, mentors and industry insiders.


Use eRecruiting by Experience on campus?
Find your school here.

Home  > Article

Creative Compensation: Beyond Salaries

By Laura Sweeney

Employers who aren't handing out generous salaries (and even some who are) are finding themselves negotiating "creative compensation" with employees-that is, perks, niceties, and other non-monetary concessions that make life more convenient.

The worst thing that can happen is that your employer says no. But you never know unless you ask.
Compensation means much more than a paycheck. These days, employees expect money in addition to complete insurance coverage (including health, life, and disability) and a savings or retirement plan, too. And when employers won't budge on price, workers negotiate what HR reps call "creative compensation" - that is, perks, niceties, and other amenities that make life more convenient.

If you're about to sit down at the negotiating table (either to ask your boss for a raise or to negotiate a salary with a potential employer) you should know all of your compensation options. If your employer won't raise your salary, you can bargain for non-monetary concessions. Consider playing one or more of these cards:

Your employer's hands might be tied in raising your salary, but vacation time is more discretionary. Ask for more paid vacation time. If you can't get more time, at least get the right time - name the days you want to be on vacation. Most entry-level employees are expected to take off when it's convenient for the higher-ups, but if you name your dates up front (or explain that you have long-standing plans to be away) you could win that time off.

Commuting Expenses
Many employers are paying workers a stipend for commuting expenses, whether it be for public transportation, parking fees, or gas. Before you go to your meeting, tally your commuting expenses for a typical month, or by year. Your employer may reimburse you for part of your expenses.

Tuition Reimbursement
Large companies usually have a set policy regarding tuition reimbursement. If you work for a smaller company, however, there might not be an official policy, or it may be applied on a case-by-case basis. If further education is going to help you do your job better, your boss might be eager to send you to class. This can save you a bundle and make you a more marketable worker, too.

Company Car
If your job requires you to be on the road, it may be perfectly reasonable to request a company car or car allowance. Life without car payments and auto insurance is a dream.

Some people just aren't cut out for the nine-to-five life. If you're a morning person, your boss might be willing to adjust your time card so that you can work from, say, seven to three; or if you're juices get flowing later in the day, from 10:30 to 6:30. It might even be to your boss' advantage to let you work during your most productive hours. Remember, though, that flextime works only if your coworkers are not dependent on you being in the office during certain times.

Like flextime, telecommuting is a way to make your schedule more convenient for you. If you're not needed physically in the office, you could work from home part of the day or a couple days each week.

Moving Allowance
If you are negotiating a salary for a new job in another city or state and will have to relocate, definitely hit your employer up for moving expenses. Before you ask for an allowance or reimbursement, gather an idea of how much the move is going to cost you.

Stock Options
Stock options are quickly becoming a standard part of companies' benefits packages and bonus systems. But at many companies they're still a bargaining chip, and (just like vacation time) can be more discretionary than a salary.

One last note: You're obviously trying to better your position during your compensation negotiation, but be fair, because no one will bargain with someone who is being greedy or unreasonable. Follow that rule and the worst thing that can happen is that your employer says no. But you never know unless you ask.

More Related Articles

12 Ways to Get out of Credit Card Debt
Everybody with a credit card knows it's smart to pay what you owe at the end of every month - right? According to, an international credit card tracker, the average American household had its highest debt ever in 1999, at $7,564.

Was my raise too small?
To gauge the real purchasing power of your raise, you need to take into account the cost of living to see if your pay is increasing in real terms.

Rotary Rules
Never thought that blue-and-gold Rotary club sign at the edge of your town would have any relevance to you? Think again. With a little networking effort on your part, your local Rotary club could be the funding source you need for your next foreign travel experience, artistic pursuit, or community service project. Learn how to make it happen.

Google Web Search
Didn't see what you were looking for?
powered by Google
Copyright ©2017 Experience, Inc Privacy Policy Terms of Service