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The benefits package

Private healthcare cover is the most common benefit; almost nine in 10 of you get healthcare cover as part of your package

Private healthcare cover is the most common benefit; almost nine in 10 of you get healthcare cover as part of your package. However, those earning under £30k are less likely to receive this with only six out of 10 having access to private health cover.

The continuing debate on pensions means making provision for the future is at the forefront of many people's minds at the moment. The pharmaceutical industry goes a long way to help towards setting in place private pensions for employees, with three-quarters of respondents having a company pension scheme.

There are few differences between the sexes, however over two-thirds of men are likely to have life assurance benefits, compared with less than half of women. Those earning bigger salaries are also more likely to have life assurance benefits, as well as critical illness benefits, as part of their remuneration.

The benefit that employees most value is the company pension scheme with over 50 per cent of respondents citing this as the most importance perk.

One in 10 valued private healthcare cover and flexible working. Similarly, one in 10 respondents, in particular those under the age of 44, valued mortgage assistance.

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Retirement

As our research was conducted before the Warner pensions crisis report was released, the figures show that the typical pharma worker plans to retire at 59.

It will be interesting to see how this may change in next year's survey, based on what happens with the government and pensions. Women would like to put their feet up slightly earlier than men (just before they are 58), while the average man prefers to opt for his leathers and Harley Davison just after his 60th birthday.

Driving ambition

In the mid 1990s, 80 per cent of respondents said they had a company car, however over the years this figure has fallen due mainly to changes in taxation. For seven years there was a significant fall in the number of people with a company car, but this has stayed relatively static in the last three years.

Men are more likely to have a company car, with 60 per cent having this perk compared to 50 per cent of women.

Of those who have a company car, almost all have a choice of cars.However for many (over 50 per cent) this choice is restricted to a company-determined list. One third of those who have a company car have a choice within a specific budget, while 25 per cent have free choice and are able to make additional contributions towards their vehicle if they wish.

You are most likely to have a car if you work in sales or as part of a product team in the UK market.

As ever, German cars are the most popular among pharma company employees; BMW and Audi are the most favoured brands with over a fifth of respondents opting for these marques.

VW was the third manufacturer of choice for a further 10 per cent of employees who chose this as their company car. Men are more likely to drive a BMW or Audi, while women opted for an Audi or VW. Among the BMW drivers, the 3 series models proved to be the most popular, and the A4 and A3 are top choices in the Audi range, which is the most popular marque among employees whose jobs focus on UK business.

Of those who do not receive a company car as part of their package, six in every 10 receive car-related benefits. These are most commonly paid out on top of the annual salary (97 per cent); just four people have it paid as a single lump sum.

Based on the results, men receive on average in excess of £1,000 over women. One in four participants do not receive car-related benefits in any way or form; almost two-thirds of this group are women (64 per cent).

2nd September 2008

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