Taking the time to manage your finances could help you stay on top of your bills. Putting some money away for emergencies can positively impact your future. Most money-saving advice consists of the generic cut back on your monthly spending. There are ways you can effectively manage your money by making the most of your employee benefits in the workplace.
Ask about the benefits your work gives
According to research by City University London some years ago, failing to tell staff about the benefits on offer, such as private health insurance and income protection, cost UK companies £2.7bn every year. Businesses experience increased staff turnover and sickness absence by not taking up these benefits. There is no indication this has improved over the years. It is always worth asking your employer if there are any benefits you and your colleagues are eligible for. Whether as a reduced tariff on a mobile phone contract or discounts at local eateries, most businesses offer their employees a few perks.
Even something as simple as your employers providing free fresh fruit, tea, or coffee can help you save costs. Everyday essentials many would buy themselves. Some businesses also offer free eye tests, cheaper gym memberships, and so much more. All you have to do is ask. Individually these benefits can mount up. Collectively they can save you money help you in making the most of your employee benefits.
Think about signing up to Salary Sacrifice
Signing up for a salary sacrifice means that you and your employer have an arrangement where an amount of your cash pay is deducted in return for non-cash benefits, such as leasing a new car.
Employers quite widely use salary sacrifice because of the money it saves. How effective it is can depend on your salary and the contributions and tax bracket you are in.
There are pros and cons to signing up for a salary sacrifice. You need to do your research or take some advice before you participate. However, it’s essential to do your research. Signing onto salary sacrifice doesn’t work for all companies and their employers, and in extreme cases, it can lose money rather than save. Furthermore, sacrificing part of your salary may affect maternity, paternity and pension pay. Here is a comprehensive guide from Unison.
Start Saving for the Future
According to employment agency Reed, workplace pensions are a great way to save money for your retirement as employers will often match any contributions made. The Money Saving Expert states that workplace pension schemes are a tax-free way to save money for your future without many risks.
The Money and Pensions Service is a great place to start finding out how best to save for your old age. There have been cases where people have been mis-sold pensions. Sometimes the switch did not consider aspects of their lifestyle, and therefore they have been sold incorrect pension annuity. So it would help if you made sure that by making the most of your employee benefits, you are getting the best deal for your pension and your pension contributions.
Check for Eligible Insurance
Another way of making the most of your employee benefits is checking out any insurance deals they may offer. Some workplaces provide subsidised or free insurance policies, such as mobile phone and gadget insurance. Some companies also offer reduced rates for private health care and dental insurance.
You may already have some of these benefits if you pay a fee for your bank account. These are also known as a ‘Packaged Bank Account’. Rather than have duplicate policies, you could save money by using the most cost-effective scheme. If you already have one of these accounts, find out more before switching. The Financial Ombudsman service warns;
‘Some people couldn’t have used any of the accounts extras – or couldn’t use the extras they’d specifically opened it for.’
Suppose you decide to buy insurance from your employer. In that case, Money Helper suggests that you read each contract to make sure that you are paying for insurance you will use, alongside knowing the terms and conditions of exactly what is covered, to avoid mis-sold insurance.