How to Become a Benefits Officer


Do you enjoy analyzing financial data? Do you have a thorough understanding of how benefits programs can affect an organization? If so, a career as a benefits officer is worth considering. Here are some quick highlights of working in this field:


• Excellent level of pay

• The opportunity to take responsibility for projects

• Able to apply financial analysis skills

• Can work for almost any type of company 


If you want to know more about the ins and outs of this career, then read on; we’ll fill you in on the details, including an overview of what these administrative professionals do, how much they earn, and what you’ll need to qualify!



Educational Requirements for Becoming a Benefits Officer

Many employers prefer to hire candidates who have at least a bachelor’s degree, particularly one with a concentration in accounting, human resources management, finance, or business administration. Some employers however, may require that you have a master’s degree in one of these areas. 





General Job Description

Benefits officers are responsible for planning, directing and implementing the benefits related activities and staff of an organization. They must determine what an organization will offer in terms of benefits packages, as well as the service delivery methods for those packages.



Typical Job Duties

• Prepare detailed job descriptions and classification systems

• Investigate and report on industrial accidents for insurance providers

• Represent the organization at personnel related hearings and investigations

• Plan employee compensation and benefits information sessions for management and employees

• Project an organization’s personnel needs by preparing personnel forecasts

• Prepare budgets for personnel operations

• Plan, administer, evaluate and direct the employee benefits programs

• Integrate benefits programs following mergers and acquisitions

• Direct the work activities of compensation and benefits administrators, assistants and coordinators 



Experience You Might Need

Many employers will require that you have relevant work experience in order to be hired on as a benefits officer. Such experience may include working in a role wherein you were involved in the administering compensation and/or benefits packages in some capacity, or a job in which you had to perform complex financial analysis.


Success Tip: Ideally, you’ll posses a combination of education and experience when applying for jobs. 



Personal Characteristics Needed for This Career

If you plan on enjoying what you do for a living (highly recommended!) then having some of the following characteristics will help you a great deal:


• Sensitivity and the ability to keep employee information confidential

• The ability to communicate well with people in person and in writing

• Tact and diplomacy

• Able to use care and accuracy when working with details

• Strong interpersonal skills

• The ability to understand a variety of viewpoints

• The ability to earn the trust and co-operation of managers and employees

• Enjoy taking a methodical approach to your work

• Willingness to take responsibility for projects

• Enjoy using computer systems

• Enjoy compiling, interpreting and providing information about benefit plans



Skills Needed to Be Successful

To effectively perform the duties of a benefits officer, you need to possess certain skills, including:


• Ability to analyze data on salaries and the cost of benefits

• Advanced budget management capabilities

• A thorough understanding of how benefits programs can affect an organization financially

• Able to weigh the strengths and weaknesses of different benefits plans

• An understanding of the different factors that

• Able to ensure that benefits packages are properly administered and delivered

• The ability to supervise, motivate and encourage staff

• Able to clearly convey recommendations in written reports





Average Salary Level

The salary you could earn as a benefits officer can vary, typically depending on the following factors:


• Your level of education

• Your level of experience

• The size and type of your employer

• The region in which you work

• Many other factors


Benefits Officer Salary United States: According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median salary level of American workers in the Compensation and Benefits Managers occupational group is $95,250 per year.



Who Employs Them?

Benefits officers are employed by public and private organizations in ever sector of industry, although they are typically on found in organizations with a medium or large sized employee base. In smaller organizations, other managers might perform the duties of a benefits officer.



Work Environment

Hours of Work: Benefits officers typically work normal weekday business hours. They may occasionally have to work overtime on evenings and weekends in order to meet deadlines.


Work Setting: Benefits officers work in an office setting, and spend a good amount of time using computers, reviewing documents and emails, and attending meetings.


Working Conditions: Working with firm deadlines, responding to complaints, and dealing with service delivery issues can be stressful for benefits officers. 



Job Postings - Current Opportunities 

Our job board below has benefits officer postings in your area of Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom or Australia, when available:




Career Advancement in This Profession

With enough experience, a benefits officer may have the opportunity to advance into an executive management role within their organization (or an outside organization), or start their own payroll services firm.



Similar Career Profiles in Our Database

Listed below are careers in our database that are similar in nature to benefits officer, as they may be in the same field, or they may involve many of the same skills, competencies and/or responsibilities:


Accounting Clerk

Contract Administrator

Human Resources Manager

Inventory Control Specialist

Payroll Administrator

Payroll Supervisor

Tax Accountant



References for this Career Guide

To find out more about what a benefits officer does, what qualifications you’ll need, how much you could earn, and other details of this career, please consult the following resources:


Occupations in Alberta: Human Resources Professional.” (April 1, 2017). ALIS website - Alberta Learning Information Service. Retrieved October 27, 2019.

Management:Compensation and Benefits Managers.” (September 4, 2019). Occupational Outlook Handbook - United States Bureau of Labor Statistics website. Retrieved October 27, 2019.



Scholarships for Becoming a Benefits Officer

The 'Relevant Fields of Study' section below shows fields of study relevant to this career. You can search for scholarships matched to those fields of study using on our All Scholarships by Major page. 


Success Tip: Be sure to apply for any scholarships that you even barely qualify for, as there are millions of dollars of scholarships that go unused every year due to a lack of applicants!



Relevant Fields of Study

Studying one of the university majors listed below is an excellent starting point for becoming a benefits officer. Click on the links to find out what else you can do with these majors!


Top Banner Image: 
Top Banner Image Title: 
Benefits Officer