I have one year’s experience as a HR administrator for two large global
companies. I have one year’s benefits admin background and some compensation
and benefits support experience. I am trying to spec-ialise specifically in
compensation and benefits, but am finding it hard to find jobs in this field at
a low level. I am starting a CIPD course this year. Any advice?
Philip Spencer, consultant, Macmillan Davies Hodes
Over recent years there has been a shortage of comp & bens professionals
in the HR marketplace. To develop your career further and ensure your
marketability it is important you pursue the CIPD qualification. Be aware there
are specific reward electives you may opt for during your study that will
provide a more in-depth overview of this specialism. In addition, the CIPD runs
a reward forum (more details at www.cipd.co.uk) This will provide you with the
opportunity to gain a greater understanding of the market and network in your
If there are limited opportunities with your current employer for a
comp& bens role, approach HR recruitment consultants and look at the
specialist HR websites and comp & bens-specific websites
(www.employee-benefits.co.uk and www.e-reward.co.uk).
Doug Knott, senior consultant, Chiumento
Comp & bens should be an area of opportunity for the future. There is a
high level of interest in areas such as flexible benefits. In addition, many
organisations need general help, either internal or outsourced, with the
complex issues of moving people internationally.
You should certainly continue with your CIPD course, while building on your
experience in large organisations with specialist comp& bens departments.
An alternative would be to consider a possible research role for one of the
major comp & bens consulting organisations.
Peter Sell, joint managing director, DMS Consultancy
A recent survey of HR salaries showed comp & bens salaries to be higher
than other areas of HR.
A number of consultancies that specialise in compensation and benefits and
these should be your target employers. They will have specialist roles at all
levels of the organisation and most offer a structured approach to employee
Having a good degree will be something that most of these consultancies look
Another option is to talk to your present company. A large global company
will have comp& bens specialists in the HR depart-ment. If you show
interest they may support you in achieving your career aspirations.
Finally, don’t be in too much of a hurry. With only one year’s experience
and two companies potential employers may ask questions about your commitment.