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As an employee, you have access to a valuable set of benefits through your company. However, many workers don’t take full advantage of all their benefit offerings. With a little effort, you can ensure you are maximizing your benefits to improve your overall compensation package.

Understand Your Benefits Fully

The first step is ensuring you have a complete understanding of all the benefits available to you. Read through benefits communications carefully and ask your HR department any questions you have. Key benefits to understand include:

  • Health Insurance Plans (premiums, deductibles, coverage details)
  • Retirement Plans (contribution matching, investment options)
  • Paid Time Off Policies
  • Supplemental Insurance (dental, vision, disability, life insurance)
  • Employee Assistance Programs
  • Tuition Reimbursement or Training Programs

Once you clearly understand the benefits, you can decide which ones are most worthwhile for your situation.

Take Advantage of Health/Wellness Incentives

Many companies provide incentives and discounts for participating in wellness programs. This may include reduced health insurance premiums for not smoking or achieving healthy biometric numbers. Your company may also offer discounts on gym memberships or other wellness services. Taking advantage of these can lead to health improvements and cost savings.

Max Out Retirement Contributions

Retirement plans like 401(k)s provide tax-advantaged savings. Most employers also provide generous matching contributions up to a certain percentage of your salary deferral. At minimum, you’ll want to defer enough to receive the maximum matching amount – that’s free money!

Check for Underutilized Perks

From tuition assistance to employee discount programs, there may be perks you aren’t taking advantage of. Check for any underutilized benefits that could provide meaningful value. Even small savings can add up over time.

Your employee benefits are a significant component of your overall compensation package. Rather than letting them go ignored and underutilized, be proactive about understanding and maximizing the full breadth of benefits your employer provides.

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