Human Resources – Who is in charge of compensation, benefits and rewards schemes?

Most employees don’t just work for the love of their job. Most people also want a decent salary and other incentives that will reward them for their hard work.

These remuneration packages need to be created, managed and distributed efficiently. This is where HR professionals that specialise in compensation and benefits get involved.

Without these guys, nobody would get that ‘just been paid’ feeling at the end of the month and Christmas bonuses would certainly be a thing of the past. For many people, compensation and benefits professionals are the most important guys in the HR department. Why? Well, because they control the money of course!

What are the responsibilities of someone in compensation, benefits and rewards?

Basically, people who work in compensation and benefits are responsible for devising policies for an organisation’s salary, bonus and incentive schemes. These might include:

  • Salaries
  • Bonuses
  • Commission
  • Company cars
  • Pensions
  • Life assurance
  • Profit-sharing
  • Dental plans
  • Medical insurance
  • Vouchers
  • Capital bonds reward schemes.

They are then in charge of administering, managing and evaluating the payroll, salary structures, and incentive schemes. Basically, they make sure that the right people get the right amount of money, at the right time.

Why is a good compensation, benefits and rewards scheme important?

The right compensation and benefits schemes ensure that hard-working employees are rewarded fairly and in the most cost-effective way for the company. This in turn then motivates employees to sustain their performance.

The compensation, benefits and reward schemes that these HR professionals manage are not only important for retaining and motivating employees, but also for attracting new people to the company. Salary and incentive packages are one of the main reasons why people apply for specific jobs. The more attractive compensation and benefits schemes tend to generate more interest in new positions.

What skills do HR employers in this sector look for?

Compensation, benefits and reward careers are all about money. Consequently, HR professionals who work in this area need to be numerate, commercially aware and have a detailed knowledge of financial laws and regulations.

As well as monitoring their own company’s salary structures and benefits, these people may be required to research and analyse the salary rates of their competitors.

However, it’s not all about numbers, paycheques and payrolls. These guys need excellent communication skills to make recommendations to employees on pension and insurance schemes and to liaise with government departments and trade unions with regards to compensation and benefits issues.

Indeed, these roles have a strategic element too, as the needs of the company and employees need to be balanced effectively. Furthermore, compensation and benefits are directly linked to market changes. Consequently, difficult decisions regarding salary and benefits alterations may need to be made within this department.

Would I be in charge of all compensation, benefits and reward schemes?

The size of the organisation determines what kind of work you might be doing in your compensation and benefits career. In smaller organisations, some people might deal with the whole range of responsibilities, whereas larger companies may offer careers which focus on one specific aspect of the compensation and benefits remit, such as payroll management.

If you’re interested in an HR career that specialises in compensation, benefits and rewards, check out the occupational profile of a Compensation and Benefits Manager. If a career in HR sounds perfect for you, take a look at the various HR jobs listed on our jobs board!

If you aren’t looking for careers advice but rather how to apply for benefits you should visit the Gov website in the UK or you can visit Application-Gov if you are based in the US and want advice on how to apply for benefits.

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