Social workers try to help people overcome obstacles in their lives. They serve public agencies, private businesses, hospitals, police departments, schools and all levels of government. Social workers are required to have a degree in social work. The wide variety of positions available for social workers makes it difficult to gauge a salary for this profession. Each employer has a different pay scale. The type of degree also dictates how much the social worker is paid. Fringe benefits are included in most salary packages but vary depending on the employer. Some benefits are more common than others and are usually included.
Vacation is time social workers can take off to go on vacation or just get away from work for awhile. Most companies offer vacation, but the amount of time varies per employer. Some employers start with two weeks after the first year of service and increase the amount of time by another week every year or two. Other companies may start with only one week and may not increase so often. Usually you must take at least four hours or more at a time, and it must also be in four-hour increments.
Social work requires continued education to keep up with changing laws, environmental issues and therapeutic break-throughs. Some employers offer to pay for a social worker's education because it's necessary for the position. If the employer doesn't offer continuing education as a fringe benefit, social workers can sign up with the National Association of Social Workers to get discounted prices on courses and online tools to access training.
Flexible working is a benefit that allows you to leave work for a short time and make it up over the rest of that week. Usually you're allowed to flex up to four hours in one week. You can leave early for the day or leave for an appointment in the middle of the day and come back in the afternoon. However you decide to use the "flex," the time has to be made up.
Healthy Working Programs
Social workers sometimes have long hours and may be very stressed out with particular clients and their environments. Some employers have programs set up to help employees quit smoking, learn to eat healthy, start a fitness program and seek counseling if needed. They may also have a "health day" in which outside organizations come in and test cholesterol and fitness levels for employees.