VIRTUAL HR DEPARTMENT – COMPENSATION AND BENEFITS: PERQUISITES AND CASH EQUIVALENTS

Virtual HR Department

Compensation and Benefits

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This is an area virtually endless in options. Common elements are items such as employee discounts on services or merchandise, paying for professional licenses and memberships, paid parking, club memberships, home Internet service and company cars. 

Depending on the type and value of these items, they may be considered taxable benefits. It is recommended that you consult with a benefits or payroll professional or your accountant for confirmation of the status of any items you wish to offer your employees.

Professional Associations and Certifications

Many professions require that employees maintain memberships, certifications or licenses to practice their trade. Often, employers will reimburse employees for the costs of their annual membership in professsional associations and maintaining their license or designation. Some professions also require ongoing professional development or education. Employers interested in providing this kind of employee support can make use of the tuition reimbursement program template available in the Training and Development section of this website.

Gym/Health Club Membership Reimbursement

A fitness benefit provides financial assistance to employees who wish to enhance their well-being through physical activity. This benefit is used to contribute to membership payments for health clubs or weight loss centres.

This benefit is a great way to promote healthy lifestyles within an organization and decrease costs associated with absenteeism (sick days and personal time off for doctors appointments, for example), stress (decreased productivity and employee  morale), and early retirement (healthy employees may be able to, and want to, continue their employment longer than employees who are not as physically able). 

Product Discounts

Through this benefit, employees are able to purchase company products and services at a discounted rate. Employers increase business by selling more products, while employees benefit from receiving a discount – a benefit for both employer and employee. 

By encouraging employees to use company products and services, they have a better understanding of how those products work, how they compare with competitors’ products and why customers should purchase this product. This can lead to product-improvement suggestions and create a strong sense of pride and desire to produce and deliver quality products and services.

Group Discount Programs

Many organizations will also arrange with service providers to offer their employees preferential group rates, on items ranging from gym membership to home and auto insurance. These arrangements do not cost the employer anything (other than the time for someone to arrange for them to be set up) and provide employees with savings on goods and services without them being a taxable benefit.