in Salary Reviews

What Benefits should I ask for as well as Salary?

The choice of benefits varies quite considerably, but you need to know why employers will like or dislike them.

When that time of the year comes up when you actually get to discuss your salary and package rather than just thinking about it, it is important to have all the facts to hand. You can find an article about Annual Reviews on our website at, but in particular what should you do about benefits in addition to salary?

Firstly you need to understand their relevance. Firms like benefits because often they include some tax reduction benefit to the firm – usually the Customs & Excise website has details of this – . It is often the case that some benefits receive a different treatment when it comes to National Insurance payments.

We have come across benefits including annual gym membership, life insurance, critical illness cover, death in service cover, health insurance, golf club membership, parking permits to cover a city centre car park, access to a discretionary trust to receive specific bonuses, extra annual leave, flexible working including a computer at home and broadband costs covered, additional annual leave swapped for evening and weekend cover, pension contributions (access to a stakeholder pension isnt really a benefit despite some firms best efforts to persuade otherwise!) with a range being from about 2% up to a 12% contribution, car loans, relocation packages, leaseback car arrangements, clothes allowance, and others I cannot think of at present!

It is worth bearing in mind that these will often cost the employer less than a payrise, and can be quite beneficial to you to have in place of salary. After all, salary tends to disappear, whereas pension contributions are a little safer…

Jonathan Fagan

Jonathan Fagan LLM FIRP is Managing Director of Ten-Percent Legal Recruitment. He has been recruiting solicitors and legal support staff for law firms and in house legal departments for over 20 years and handles roles from junior fee earners through to partners and law firm sales/purchases. A non-practising solicitor on the Roll since 2000, he is also the author of a number of legal career books, which are available at You can contact Jonathan at