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What Are Fringe Benefits?

Fringe benefits refer to various items of compensation that are given to employees on top of their regular wages. Fringe benefits do not come in the form of cash. Oftentimes, they are also referred to as benefits in kind, employee benefits, and perks.

The availability of fringe benefits vary depending on the company one works for. In some companies, certain fringe benefits are automatically given upon employment. In others, an employee has to work for several months before qualifying for fringe benefits. Depending on the location of the company, full time employees absolutely have to have a certain number of basic fringe benefits. Some states require more than others. As a workaround, some companies prefer to hire mainly part time workers and not full time ones.

Fringe benefits are offered more in certain industries than others. This is particularly true for occupations that have a high demand for workers. In these cases, fringe benefits are offered to attract more employees. These fringe benefits can be anything from sizable sign up bonuses, programs to pay off student loans, and insurance policies with wider coverage.
Common basic fringe benefits include vacation days and sick days and health insurance. Other examples of fringe benefits include housing, transportation allowance, a car, continuing education, health club memberships, mobile phones, laptop computers, and so on.

While fringe benefits merely add value to one’s experience at the work place, they do make for more satisfied workers and sometimes even spell the difference when choosing between two jobs.

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