Comp Level High but Staff Low for Benefits Managers

November 30, 2005 ( - A new survey found that the average benefit manager makes nearly $83,743 a year and has 14.5 years of experience.

A survey of 77 employers by Spencer Benefits Reports shows that benefit managers at large companies with more than 5,000 employees average $117,882 annually and 13.8 years of experience, according to a news report on the survey. Managers for mid-market companies with 1,000 to 4,999 employees average $84,870 and 16.4 years of experience. Benefits managers at small companies with fewer than 1,000 workers average $67,465 and 13.9 years of experience.

The survey found that manager salaries have increased 7% in the last two years, and nearly half of respondents reported they received a bonus, which averaged about 17.5% of salary. Compensation levels drop drastically for junior benefits staffers, with specialists averaging $51,203 and clerical workers averaging $36,607, according to the news report.

In addition, the survey found that, while salaries are up, benefits departments continue to shrink. The research shows departments now average 4.1 employees, down from about 11 in 1991.

Information by Spencer Benefits Reports can be purchased at .