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5 Benefits You Should Be Negotiating For in 2018

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With unemployment at a 17-year-low of 4.1 percent, it is truly an employees’ market. However, according to PayScale’s Compensation Best Practices Report, in 2018 the majority of companies are planning an average pay increase of just 3 percent or less  – similar to the increase reported in 2017.

Does the thought of such a meager increase get you down? Unfortunately, it may not be feasible to pursue a higher salary in your current job. But before you jump ship, consider negotiating for any of these popular (yet less ubiquitous) benefits.

1. Education or Tuition Reimbursement

Like they say, learning is a lifelong process. Whether you’re looking to brush up your existing skills, or prepare for a new career track, education is a great way to invest in yourself and your future.

There are a range of options for the working professional. Many accredited colleges and universities offer executive and evening degree programs.

Seeking a quicker return on your investment? Many educational institutions also offer more specialized certificate programs. Often these can be completed in 15 months or less. If you have even less time, you can use online learning programs like to brush up on specific skills.

2. Remote Work

Working remotely is good for the employer, employee and the environment. Telecommuting even just one day a week can lower energy expenses for the employer, reduces automotive wear and tear, and is better for the environment. It’s a win-win for all. If you do choose to work remotely, be sure to check out these tips to make that process successful.

3. Paid Family Leave

Four out of every five employees say work-life balance is more important than salary.  We still have a long way to go until we reach true gender equity in the workplace. However, paid family leave can have a positive impact on all employees and their families.

4. Gym Membership or Reimbursement

According to the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), one of the key strategies many employers are using to reduce health care benefits costs is to boost employee health through preventive health and wellness benefits. Joining a gym can yield a number of benefits both tangible and intangible – from improving health to shifting commute times. Joining community-based group exercise studios such as CrossFit, Orangetheory or Barre can help boost employee camaraderie and morale.

5. Transportation Allowance

Americans on average spend $2,600 annually on commuter costs. Many employers offer allowances or subsidies for transportation costs. Some may offer options like transit passes, vanpooling and free parking.

To see the entire list of top benefits in 2018, check out the latest Compensation Best Practices Report.

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What benefits would you find most appealing? Which ones would you use the most? We want to hear from you. Tell us your story in the comments or join the conversation on Twitter.

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