Oftentimes we have a choice in potential job opportunities, and many of us make a list of where we’d prefer to work. It can be a difficult decision, and it can come down to the details. This is where flexible spending accounts can enter the picture. When figuring out what you might make at different job possibilities you may want to factor in the cash value of the benefit package. Flexible spending accounts, whether dependent career health spending accounts, or less common benefits such as travel FSAs, can lead to a monetary value. Some people choose to add that to the salary figure and we agree with this math.
Take this example: Job A pays $50,000 while Job B pays $52,000. So job B gets to be in the “good” column and that could tip the balance right? Not necessarily. Imagine if job A offers all sorts of flexible spending accounts, and you can use both a dependent care account and a health spending account. And once you do the math you find that you’ll save $1000 with a dependent care FSA and another $600 for the amount that you take out for your health spending account. Suddenly the difference in what will be in your pocket after a year at each job is not so great. While this may not alone make your decision, it certainly could have a significant effect in some cases.
For those reading this post who work in Human Resources or executive management and are choosing flexible spending account possibilities for the company, keep the above in mind. When there is an employee that you want, you need to be able to win the battle when they make there “positives and negatives” list. Human capital is what separates good companies from average ones. Dependent care and health spending accounts can help, and are particularly helpful when you know that many companies are paying roughly the same amount for the job in question.