Executive Perks on the Decline

November 17, 2003 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - Nearly three out of 10 (29%) chief financial officers (CFO) looking to tighten the corporate belt are planning to cut down on executive perks.

When asked “In the current economic climate, which perk are you least likely to offer executive-level job candidates?” 1,400 CFOs polled by Robert Half Management Resources said most likely to be trimmed were stock options (17%), followed by:

  • 13% – signing bonuses
  • 11% – performance bonuses
  • 7% – extra vacation days
  • 5% – corporate perks with job offers.

Eighteen percent said they did not know.

SHRM Study

The results of Robert Half’s poll echo earlier finds by theSociety for Human Resource Management (SHRM). SHRM found that as benefit costs went up in the past year, non-health-care benefits have declined (See Costs Up, Benefits Down in 2003 ). For example, the SHRM survey notes that new hire referral bonuses, executive and non-executive sign on bonuses, and stock options have all decreased for 2003. Additionally, matching charitable contributions and spot bonuses each dropped 10%, while stock purchase plans fell 8% in 2003. Other decreases were noted by SHRM in:

  • flextime, which is now offered by 55%, compared with 64% that offered the benefit in 2002
  • professional memberships, while still common, dropped to 85% from 89%
  • just 26% now offered food services or subsidized cafeterias, compared with 29% a year ago
  • career counseling programs dropped to 24% from 29%
  • executive club memberships are down to 22% from 33%
  • travel-planning services dropped to 20% from 27%.

Dry cleaning services, concierge services, employer-sponsored personal shopping discounts, and massage therapy services also saw slight decreases from 2002, while organized, sponsored sports teams fell to 32% from 39% in last year’s survey.