We’ve all heard it once, “I’m working at Crate & Barrel just to get the 10% discount”. Many in retail make full use of the discounts their employer provides. Retail isn’t the only one offering perks though. Corporate America is big in getting you perks. I’m not talking about the free logo-infested polo shirts or cheesy slogan-laced stress balls. I’m talking about serious discounts on a new DELL or cheap airfare using your corporate travel agent.
Soon after I left my corporate job, I had two regrets. I should have refinanced while I still had a paycheck (not relevant to this article) and not getting a DELL at discount. I missed my beast of a laptop I worked on 60 hours a week.
When is the last time you checked your intranet for corporate perks? Yes, we all get that big white on-boarding envelope that actually tells you about some of these perks but at that time there are other exciting things going on in life (like your new job). I worked with my company for close to 15 years and had all but forgotten about the laptop discount program.
Here are some of the deals my old employer offered:
- Family plan discounts with the companies wireless provider.
- Discounted Microsoft Office 360.
- Audi at 6% below MSRP (that’s right car deals).
- Avis, National and enterprise car rental discounts.
- Delta vacations (10% discount) plus bonus miles.
Naturally companies don’t make a secret of these perks as it can’t hurt when recruiting new talent. Search for “Employee Discounts” and at the top of the list you’ll find https://jpmc.corporateperks.com/login That’s right even a company that doles out billions in bonuses, offers perks in the form of discounts. Discounts on:
- Computers (all brands)
- Personal vacations
- Movie tickets
- Vendor deals
- Dining up to 90% off!! (in or out)
- New/used cars
- and more…
Come to think of it, the fact that the website for JPMC corporate perks shows in the top ten of google results tells me it must be used quite extensively.
The other search results that show when doing this search is a plethora of companies that solely exist for putting together discount programs like these for other companies to use.
This is where I have to offer fair warning about some of these discounts. Many companies get these deals through already existing dealings with vendors or direct negotiations with other parties. But, many companies also go with 3rd party providers that put together these discount packages. In other words, there is a middleman.
Whenever there is a middleman I get weary as it means the middleman takes his cut. If there is a cut to be left to the middleman going straight to the source could mean doing better.
For this reason your strategy around corporate discounts should be as follows:
If you need a product or service, check first if your employer offers a discount. If so, use that as your starting point when searching for better discounts (or better services).
If you find better, go with those, it not use the corporate discount.
Most importantly, educate yourself on what your employer has to offer. You might miss out on savings if you don’t.
Good luck reaching your financial goals.