Earnings for Benefits Specialists in the United States come in at around $47K per year on average. Total cash compensation for Benefits Specialists runs from $32K to $62K depending on bonuses that can occasionally exceed $6K and profit sharing that can reach almost $4K. The most influential factor affecting pay for this group is geographic location, though career duration and the particular employer have a (lesser) impact as well. Among survey respondents, women are more common than men; 87 percent of Benefits Specialists are female. Medical benefits are awarded to a large number, and most earn dental coverage. Work is enjoyable for Benefits Specialists, who typically claim high levels of job satisfaction. The figures in this overview were provided by individuals who took PayScale's salary questionnaire.
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$35,120 - $64,115
(Median)
$35K
$47K
$64K
MEDIAN: $47,162
10%
50%
90%

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$13.72 - $24.74
(Median)
$14
$19
$25
MEDIAN: $18.00
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$22K$44K$66K
Salary
$35,120 - $64,115  
   
Bonus
$25.53 - $5,928  
Profit Sharing
$-0.49 - $4,064  
Commission
$2,850  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$31,647 - $62,499  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 28 Oct 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 847
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$13$26$39
Hourly Rate
$13.72 - $24.74  
   
Overtime
$21.17 - $36.51  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$26K$52K$78K
Bonus
$25.53 - $5,928  
   
Commission
$2,850  
Profit Sharing
$-0.49 - $4,064  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$31,647 - $62,499  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 28 Oct 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 469

Find Out Exactly What You Should Be Paid

United States (change)

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Job Description for Benefits Specialist

A company with a large number of employees holding company-sponsored benefits may have a benefits specialist. Much of the specialist's work involves administration of the organization’s health plan and providing information to employees related to these benefits. The benefits specialist helps select administrators of the organization’s employee retirement plans as well.

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Benefits Specialist Tasks

  • Maintain records and procedures for the administration process.
  • Analyze employee benefits data to ensure accuracy, including service from third party vendors.
  • Participate in preparation and communication to employees about benefit programs, procedures, claims and any other government mandated disclosures.
  • Administer and provide specialized support for employee benefits programs.

Common Career Paths for Benefits Specialist


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Benefits Specialists who go on to become Compensation & Benefits Managers may see their salaries climb quite a bit. Median pay for Compensation & Benefits Managers is $81K annually. Human Resources Generalists or Benefits Managers are common next-step roles for Benefits Specialists moving up in their careers; annual pay for Human Resources Generalists is $3K higher on average, and it's $24K higher for Benefits Managers.

Benefits Administrator Job Listings

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Popular Employer Salaries for Benefits Specialist


Popular Skills for Benefits Specialist


Survey results imply that Benefits Specialists deploy a substantial tool kit of skills at work. Most notably, skills in ADP Benefits System, Data Analysis, 401k Plan Administration, and Human Resources Information System are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts between 8 percent and 13 percent. Skills that seem to negatively impact pay include Insurance, Human Resources, and Oral / Verbal Communication. Those educated in Benefits Administration tend to be well versed in Microsoft Office.

Pay by Experience Level for Benefits Specialist

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.


Experience and pay tend to be weakly linked for Benefits Specialists — those with more experience do not necessarily bring in higher earnings. Relatively untried employees who have less than five years' experience make $41K, but folks with five to 10 years under their belts enjoy an appreciably larger median of $47K. People with 10 to 20 years of experience make an average of about $49K in this role. Veterans who have worked for more than two decades do tend to make the most in the end; the median pay for this group is $53K.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $44,554

Larger city markers indicate a job is popular in that location.

Home to some of the best pay for Benefits Specialists, Los Angeles offers exceptional salaries, 20 percent above the national average. Benefits Specialists will also find cushy salaries in Washington (+17 percent), Seattle (+15 percent), Nashville (+12 percent), and Dallas (+12 percent). Those in the field find the lowest salaries in Oklahoma City, 12 percent below the national average. Employers also pay below the national average in Baltimore (6 percent lower) and Portland (3 percent lower).

Benefits Specialist Reviews

What is it like working as a Benefits Specialist?

Benefits Specialist in San Angelo:
"Great Job Satisfaction / Low Pay."
Pros: Helping Veterans and Dependents with their federal and state education benefits provides a large amount of job satisfaction.
Cons: Long days, grumpy customers, and little recognition.

Benefits Specialist in Columbia:
"Helping People while Working from Anywhere!"
Pros: Work at home, interacting with employees, connecting employees with resources, providing emotional support to employees, my coworkers are great, free coffee, nice office, free parking, compassionate manager, and it is fairly low stress - I don't take the work home with me but on a few rare occasions.
Cons: Inexperienced leadership, frequent changes after acquisition by a larger company, and lack of transparency in communication and pay.

Benefits Specialist in Irving:
"Demanding. Constant changes with client benefits rules."
Pros: Challenging. Constant demand of attention and monitoring accounts. Technically challenging. Constantly solving issues. An opportunity to build a better system to run the programs.
Cons: Mostly human errors that are made daily. We train and yet we get things wrong.

Benefits Specialist in St. Paul:
"Challenging."
Pros: I like that every day is different. Every situation is different. Based on needs assessment, I help folks navigate through health care, work, and benefit options for their life. I also help folks access community resources. There's always something new to learn and it's often rewarding. Plus, my colleagues are great and they're open to respecting my trans* identity. (Hint: Payscale, you should have more than two options for gender.)
Cons: It can be challenging in not-so-good ways. This includes abusive callers who basically just called to yell at us, because clearly we're less than human since we're answering a phone line and don't deserve respect and decency. We also don't get communication about changes to health plans and benefits until our callers do or after they do. Additionally, there's a million little things we have to do that make the job nearly impossible. One of those is sending out surveys. There's only one day a week that is designated "Survey Day", and we have to send out 10 surveys a week. Because of how calls go and what callers are willing to do, the most I've ever sent out in a week is 7.

Related Job Salaries

Location:
Years in Fields/Career:
United States (change)

Experience Affects Benefits Specialist Salaries




National Average
$45,000


Skills That Affect Benefits Specialist Salaries

ADP Benefits System
up arrow 13%

Data Analysis
up arrow 10%



Leave of Absence Administration
up arrow 4%

Benefits Administration
up arrow 3%

Retirement Plan Administration
up arrow 3%

Benefits & Compensation
0%

National Average
$45,000

Customer Service
up arrow 1%

Microsoft Excel
up arrow 1%

Microsoft Word
up arrow 2%

Microsoft Office
up arrow 3%

Human Resources
up arrow 7%

Insurance
up arrow 7%

Oral / Verbal Communication
up arrow 7%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 193 votes.

Gender

Female
87 %
Male
13 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
6%
1-4 years
41%
5-9 years
25%
10-19 years
22%
20 years or more
7%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 86%
dental benefits
Dental: 81%
medical benefits
Vision: 72%
dental benefits
None: 11%
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