Concierge, cars and cash for couples – the benefits of being a UK top 50 partner

Partner benefits among the UK’s top 50 law firms include allowances for new luggage, cash for spouses and an on site GP, new research by recruitment consultancy Sainty Hird & Partners claims today.

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The recruiter asked HR directors across the UK top 50 and US top 15 what they offer aside from money to attract top talent. At least two firms offer a cash “spouse allowance” for non-working partners. Such an allowance is made available to partners who have spouses answer calls on their behalf or that are required to attend events.

The recruiter said 33 per cent of respondents offered free access to medical insurance, life assurance and income protection packages, while a further 57 per cent had the same package but partners were required to pay for it through a deduction from drawings.

Almost half will pay for partners to have a home phone line and broadband. Parking is on offer at just 38 per cent of the firms, while 19 per cent operate a car loan scheme. 

Sainty Hird partner Nick Woolf said: “The choice for firms is whether they want to stay in the pack or differentiate themselves by being more generous in order to both retain partners and attract new ones.”

More unusual benefits included a concierge service, a GP on site and a cash “spouse allowance” for non-working partners. 

Well-travelled partners at one firm are offered an annual baggage allowance of £100 “based on the fact that partners travel a great deal and therefore might need to buy new luggage every year.”

The controversial cash “spouse allowance” scheme, traditionally aimed at non-working spouses, was offered by two firms which responded. 

Woolf said: “Benefits are an emotive subject, offering someone private medical cover for their family or a parking space might be small beer against a six or seven figure package, but the effect of not offering it can see heart win over mind.

“Our favourite benefit is the annual luggage allowance one firm offers to its well-travelled partners. Our lips are sealed as to the identity of this terribly thoughtful firm”.