Benefits in kind fail to lure new recruits


Benefits in kind fail to lure new recruits

Company cars, private health care and other benefits in kind represent a substantial investment for many companies, but they may be of little value when it comes to recruiting new staff, according to a government survey.

Carried out by the Department for Education and Employment (DfEE), the study demonstrates the importance of the more intangible elements of the total reward package such as training. If there is a key issue arising from the research, it is that employees are looking for different things often beyond monetary rewards.

Indeed, one of the most telling results of the research was that many of the 1,118 employees interviewed are more than willing to make a salary sacrifice in return for training.

Key findings

  • Almost two-thirds of employees would choose a job paying 5% less than another if the employer provided formal training opportunities.

  • But salary is far and away the most important factor for employees when weighing up a new job.

  • Training scores higher than traditional benefits in kind such as company cars, private health care or subsidised benefits such as canteens or staff shops.

  • A third of employees said benefits in kind were the least important factor when considering a job offer.

Which of the following is the most important to you, if you were looking to change jobs?




Salary, including commission/bonuses



Safe working environment



Friendly colleagues



Commitment to develop your skills through off the job training



Benefits in kind, such as company cars, private health scheme, staff shop, subsidised canteen



Don't know



Source: NOP survey.

Want to know more?

The research was commissioned by the Department for Education and Employment (DfEE), as part of its re-launch of the National Training awards.

It is based on two sources:

  • the results of the learning and training at work survey carried out in November and December 1999, covering 4,008 employers

  • a telephone survey of attitudes towards training amongst 1,118 employees, carried out by NOP in March 2000.

Availability: contact Harrison Cowley, tel: 0113 244 2424.

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