How to get in…
Most junior HR positions, such as an HR administrator, tend to involve an element of compensation and benefits as a standard part of the role – for example, managing payroll systems, providing statistical reports and supporting the recruitment team.
The most common route into a career in compensation and benefits is for an HR manager to specialise after a few years’ generalist experience.
If you are looking for your first job after graduation, it is important to demonstrate strong people skills, along with a keen interest in HR. An HR-related degree has its obvious benefits, as does a basic grasp of employee benefits and payroll.
What it involves…
The role requires an analytical and numerate mind, good system experience, including Excel, and knowledge of the major payroll systems.
Everyday tasks will include:
Market analysis of reward packages
Analysis of reward surveys
Preparation and management of budgets
Salary and benefits review
Compensation plans for new hires
Developing and delivering internal sales team incentives
Management and payout of company benefits, bonus and pay schemes.
At director level, a compensation and benefits specialist will be required to work strategically with the board.
To succeed, strong ownership, communications, planning and organisational skills are vital, particularly as the compensation and benefits team tends to be small.
To reach director level you must be able to demonstrate how reward policies and procedures fit in with the organisation’s overall commercial objectives and add value to the bottom line.
There is significant difference in salaries between commercial and public sector organisations – especially at the more senior levels.