More cash desired by employees, expert suggests

Higher salaries are desired during the credit crunch as people on low incomes attempt to clear debt they have accrued, according to an employment expert.

Peter Reilly, director of HR research and consultancy at the Institute for Employment Studies, explained that stretched household budgets mean employees may prefer more money rather than other benefits.

“People who are on low incomes do want the money because they need to pay their debts,” he said, adding that “giving them gimmicks is neither here nor there”.

While this depends on individual circumstances, it is likely that income levels may be prioritised.

Mortgage holders are among the group of people who may prefer to take the cash rather than benefits in order to help their financial situation, said Mr Reilly.

The Jobsite website explains that it is important for employees to give “serious consideration” when they accept a salary package with added benefits.

It warns against the “hidden costs” of benefits such as share options, which may see their value altered with fluctuations in the stock market or interest rate.

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