Dollars remuneration is one particular way to attract employees and reward them for their hard operate – but it is not the only way.

A range of non-cash added benefits in the form of wage sacrifice schemes exist that you can consider edge of as a great incentive to appeal to and keep employees.

In this post, we crack down what your selections are, how they have an effect on tax calculations, and the pros and disadvantages for both you and your staff members in getting into into these preparations, so you can really feel confident in your choices.

Here’s what we address:

What is salary sacrifice?

Also known as wage trade, salary sacrifice an arrangement involving you and your staff to lower their pre-tax yearly salary in return for acquiring a non-dollars advantage, i.e. products or a provider.

Most commonly businesses present childcare, health care, transport, and greater pension contributions.

These rewards are voluntary and workforce are able to choose in and opt out of the techniques.

Most salary sacrifice strategies this kind of as the Cycle to Work plan must be presented to all staff members.

So you will want to established up a strong HR procedure to make sure contracts are up-to-date, and the right details is provided to payroll.

How does income sacrifice function?

Just before you enter into an settlement, you will initial have to have to agree on the income value of the benefits to make certain the personnel is quite compensated for their loss of revenue.

The arrangement ought to not minimize your employee’s money earnings under the Nationwide Minimum amount Wage (NMW) charges.

So you should place processes in position to cap wage sacrifice deduction and assure NMW rates are preserved.

To give an instance, let us say your employee’s existing contract gives for funds remuneration of £40,000 a yr with no benefits.

You both equally concur that for the long run, the personnel will be paid out cash remuneration of £35,000 a year, and you will pay back an further £5,000 to their workplace pension plan.

The personnel has sacrificed £5,000 of annual salary to acquire the benefit of an improved £5,000 employer pension contribution.

What salary sacrifice techniques are accessible?


Identified as the Cycle to Operate plan, in essence, your worker hires a bicycle for the time period of the arrangement. The bike need to be owned by you or a 3rd party.

To simplify the process, there are a lot of scheme providers in the Uk you can sign up with, and the staff will deal straight with them in choosing the bicycle they want.

There is no limit on the worth of the bike beneath the scheme, unless you determine to cap it.

At the finish of the seek the services of period there are a several selections for the worker:

  • Enter into a new settlement to rehire the bicycle
  • Get the bike from the scheme
  • Give the bicycle again.

Car or truck

Similar to the bike scheme, staff members can sacrifice a preset volume of their wage every month in exchange for a brand-new lease auto.

The set regular quantity typically incorporates the important extras that come with car or truck ownership these as highway tax, insurance coverage, breakdown protect, servicing and servicing.

Your small business does not have the motor vehicle, the staff is just borrowing it from the lease company.

The leasing corporation stays the registered keeper of the lease automobile, and it’s returned at the conclude of the time period.


For personnel who choose part in the workplace pension plan, you must lead a least of 3% employer contribution, although you can opt for to contribute additional.

1 alternative to boost contributions is via a wage sacrifice pension scheme.

It implies that your employer contributions maximize, besides that they are seriously the employee’s contributions, since their income is proportionately lowered.

There is not a certain limit to how a lot the employee can sacrifice.

But as we outlined previously, your employee’s decreased income has to keep on being above the countrywide least wage.

You also require to bear in thoughts that just about every human being can only lead a whole of £40,000 to all pension financial savings yearly (this is the situation for the 2022/23 tax 12 months it’s been frozen at this figure for a several decades).

This features employer contributions, so make guaranteed the better contributions from their wage sacrifice doesn’t drive them around this.

It is also valuable to examine the minimum amount and maximum contributions allowed by the pension provider.

Childcare vouchers

Regretably, this plan is shut to new applicants (they can now obtain Tax-Free Childcare), but you can go on to run the plan for staff who joined on or before 4 October 2018.

Staff who are component of the scheme can sacrifice up to £55 a week of their salary in return for vouchers of the exact same price to be used with registered childcare suppliers.

What does salary sacrifice imply for tax and National Insurance plan contributions?

Simply because wage sacrifices are deducted from pre-tax wage, this signifies workforce help save profits tax and Nationwide Insurance coverage on the sacrificed quantity.

Let us say, for example, they get £350 for each 7 days, and £50 of that wage is sacrificed for childcare vouchers of the same price. The result is only £300 is topic to tax and National Insurance coverage contributions.

Employer discounts relate to employer Countrywide Insurance policy fees.

Typically, companies contribute 15.05% to Countrywide Insurance coverage and can consequently produce up to 15.05% personal savings on any cash processed by using salary sacrifice.

For example, for each individual £1,000 used on the Cycle to Perform plan, the normal employer will recoup £150.50.

You also want to take into account that reporting needs for non-cash benefits are unique to all those for hard cash earnings.

In typical, gains have to be reported to HMRC at the close of the tax yr utilizing the conclusion-of-year fees and added benefits on line form.

Benefits of income sacrifice for businesses and workers

As we mentioned above, the prevalent gain across techniques is that workforce can choose advantage of the exemption from cash flow tax and Countrywide Insurance on the sacrificed sum.

Salary sacrifice schemes also make higher-priced merchandise these types of as a auto or bike much more inexpensive by letting your personnel to spread the expense.

Paying out for these objects in regular instalments that occur straight out of their wage is much far more workable than spending 1 lump sum upfront.

They can also use these gains for enterprise and individual use.

This indicates as an employer, you never have to have to spend business mileage considering that the worker is no for a longer time applying their personalized car for enterprise journey, so they will not be claiming business enterprise miles.

The similar rewards also reward companies for the reason that the schemes enable to entice workers and enhance personnel retention. In addition, companies help save on tax fees since there’s no employer Countrywide Insurance policies contribution to fork out on the portion of sacrificed income.

Shortcomings of salary sacrifice for businesses and employees

As income sacrifice schemes in essence cut down the employee’s salary, this could impact any credit rating or home loan applications.

It also implies that operate-linked statutory payments (payments compensated by the employer and based mostly on regular earnings over a fastened time period, these kinds of as statutory maternity fork out and statutory unwell pay) will be afflicted much too.

For a automobile leasing scheme, the worker will need to have to spend Profit in Type (BIK) tax at the conclusion of the yr.

If the leased car is not an ultra very low emission motor vehicle like an electrical auto, they could close up paying out a lot more on BIK tax than they would help save on cash flow tax and Nationwide Insurance coverage contributions.

For companies, difficulties can come up when staff members turnover is higher.

If your staff leaves throughout the lease phrase for a automobile, for instance, the business enterprise is still left with the ongoing month-to-month payments, or an early termination charge for ending the lease early.

Salary sacrifice FAQs

Below are the solutions to routinely questioned thoughts about income sacrifice:

Can workers opt in and opt out of wage sacrifice schemes?

Certainly, wage sacrifices are voluntary.

If an personnel would like to choose in or out of a salary sacrifice arrangement, you ought to alter their deal with just about every adjust. Your employee’s agreement need to be distinct on what the funds and non-funds entitlements are at any offered time.

Consequently, sacrifice arrangements are likely to be in spot for at least 12 months, except the staff encounters a way of living alter.

In that situation the arrangements would be reviewed, then adjusted or eradicated from the employee’s agreement.

Does wage sacrifice look on a payslip?

Of course, a wage sacrifice should really seem on an employee’s payslip.

The sacrificed quantity will be demonstrated as a deduction built prior to tax and Countrywide Insurance coverage are applied.

Can salary sacrifice be backdated?

No, a wage sacrifice are unable to be backdated.

It’s only valid from the place you and your worker make the settlement, which is the day their contract is signed by equally events.

Can income sacrifice be required?

No, it’s a voluntary reduction to an employee’s income, which will have to be agreed on by each employer and employee just before it usually takes area.

For that reason, you should not quickly enrol staff members in a salary sacrifice plan.

Where can I obtain a lot more particulars about income sacrifice?

The govt web-site addresses information about wage sacrifice and what it signifies for companies and their employees.

There are information on numerous subjects, together with switching the phrases of a salary sacrifice arrangement to what it indicates for office pension schemes.

You can also speak to a payroll qualified or an accountant who presents payroll solutions.

Remaining feelings on wage sacrifice

After you have the procedures established in position, a income sacrifice arrangement is a acquire-gain for equally you and your staff members.

In addition to tax personal savings and extra convenience, they can also market very good financial savings practices, low emission transportation options, and a much healthier way of life.

As an employer, you don’t have to give each plan but look at surveying your staff members to uncover out which kinds they sense they would most gain from.


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