New Year, New Career? Benefits Matter.


2017 is here already, and this year you've promised yourself that you will stick to your New Year's resolutions. Many of us will work to break bad habits or attempt to begin positive habits. Those who have declared, "New Year, New Career" are eager to search for opportunities that may improve their lives. According to, January and February are two of the most active months to bring new hires on board. Whether you're looking for a new career or just a change of companies, it's important to look at more than just the requirements of the position when you're considering a role. The benefits package can not only make the job much more well rounded, but can also help keep your bank account in good shape beyond your new salary. Plus, according to Career Cast, benefits are actually a better predictor for enjoying your job than salary alone. Here are three key benefit areas you should consider when looking at another company:

Health Insurance

Believe it or not, medical debt continues to be the number one cause of bankruptcy in the U.S. So while you may be as healthy as they come, you never know what may happen in the future, and you want to make sure you're covered if you need it. A good health insurance plan will have a low deductible (under $1,300 for individuals); your company will share the premium costs with you; and with any luck, your doctors will be in network.

While technically not under medical coverage, you'll also want to try to find a company that offers some type of dental and vision coverage. Dental treatments can also be quite pricey, so having a plan that helps to bear some of the cost will do wonders for your savings.

Retirement Programs / Company Matching

According to Time magazine, 1 in 3 Americans have nothing saved for retirement. Even if you do have money put away for retirement, a benefits package that includes a 401k program, specifically one with some level of company matching, can help you work your way toward a happy and financially secure retirement. And once you start contributing to your 401k, you'll want to consider putting away enough to max out your company match.

Time Off

We're all familiar with the standard two-week vacation package, plus some allotment of sick and personal days. But many companies are offering different packages in an effort to be more competitive in the marketplace. Be sure to ask what your initial paid time off will be and whether or not that time is granted upon start or if it has to be accrued. Three weeks vacation may be great to start, but if you accrue it at four hours a paycheck, you won't be taking time off for quite a while.

Ladies, don't forget to ask if your potential company has a maternity leave package. For instance, Netflix announced last year that it would give its salaried employees up to 12 months of 100 percent paid parental leave to take at their own discretion. This is certainly not the norm in the U.S., with many states offering 12 weeks unpaid and 6 weeks of disability. This goes for men as well. If you plan on starting a family, see what the parental leave rules look like.

The overall benefits package being offered will speak volumes about how much a company values and is willing to invest in its employees. That's why there's such a high correlation between the level of benefits offered and job satisfaction.

So, good luck in that job search! And remember, once you start earning that extra cash and saving money because of your excellent benefits package, Popular Direct can help you keep your new-found savings and additional income growing at a great interest rate. Starting a new job is a great time to open a CD or look at new ways to save money. We can help.


The information mentioned in this article is for informational purposes only, is intended to provide general guidance and does not constitute legal or tax advice. Each person's situation is unique and may materially differ from the information provided herein. You should seek the advice of a financial professional, tax consultant and/or legal counsel to address your specific needs before any financial or other commitments regarding the issues related to your situation are made. Popular Bank does not make any representations or warranties as to the content contained herein and disclaims any and all liability resulting from any use of or reliance on such content.