Employee Remuneration and Benefits

Part A

Question 1

Apple Inc. is a multinational technology company whose headquarters are at Cupertino, California in the United States of America. This company is among the four most significant and most competitive technology companies along with Facebook, Google, and Amazon (Khan, Alam, & Alam, 2015). In 2018, Apple Inc. net worth was $945 billion meaning the in the near future, and Apple may become the first American firm to be worth $1 trillion. Apple Inc. ventures in computer software, consumer electronics, computer hardware, semiconductors, Fabless silicon design, digital distribution as well as corporate venture capital. Since its foundation in 1976, this company has manufactured and distributed products such as Mac personal computers, iPhone smartphones, Apple televisions, HomePod smart speakets, iTunes media players, and iOS operating systems (Khan, Alam, & Alam, 2015). Some of Apple’s professional applications include Xcode, Logic Pro and Final Cut Pro while online services include iCloud, Apple Music and iTunes Store.

The primary objective of the human resource department is attracting, training, and retaining skilled employees. To reach this goal, Apple Inc. employs unique strategic HR practices to ensure a productive and innovative workforce (Storey, 2014). Apple Inc. values human capital as it is a crucial component for its success and overall competitive advantage. As such, the exceptional talents employee management approached applied in the firm enable it to be the leading electronic company across the world. Apple Inc. invests heavily in the recruitment and selection processes of employees as it only hires people with the right talents as they can easily fit the organizational culture (Storey, 2014). More so, all the employees hard must be hardworking and committed to the company’s vision and mission. The company compensates its employees handsomely and offers them more benefits to maintain high retention rates.

Question 2

According to the last updated median pay report from the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, secretaries and administrative assistants should receive a salary of $37,870 on an annual basis or an hourly pay of $18.2 (Armstrong, & Taylor, 2014). Their job description according to the BLS website includes providing high-level administrative duties by preparing statistical research, carrying out clerical duties, attending to information requests, receiving visitors, scheduling appointments, preparing documents, supporting other staff members and organizing files among other activities.

The tables below show the compensation and benefits pay package for the new secretary upon hire.


pay Amount
Base Pay $ 58,734
Salary $ 58,734
Other Income total $ 1,400
Annual bonuses $ 1,000
Total cash compensation $ 61,134




Benefits Apple Inc. Cost Employee cost
Insurance benefits total $5,910  
Health insurance $5,000 $1,865
Dental insurance $500 $39
Short term disability $120 $16
Long term disability $90 $4
Life insurance $200 $0
Retirement benefits total $4,600  
Social security $2,700 $233
Medicare $600 $11
401k $1,300 $485
Paid time off Employer cost Days
Time Off benefits Total $4,400  
Vacation days $1,908 17
Personal days $ 173 3
Paid holidays $1,000 9


Apple Inc. prides itself in recruiting and retaining the top cream employees in all departments across the world (Storey, 2014). This HR strategy comes at an extra but necessary cost. The reason why the new secretary receives a base salary of $61,134 is that she is highly experienced in this industry. She has been working with Amazon as the Advertisement Director for seven years and was an Intern at Google for one year. This means that she has the necessary experience that Apply Inc. requires to maintain its competitive advantage. Her performance will be evaluated in the next 90 days upon hire to guarantee retention or termination.

Regarding the dental and health insurance, benefits will be competitively priced as Apple Inc. will cover most of the premiums. The long term and short term disability, as well as the life insurance benefits, will be provided to the new secretary at a small fee. Apple Inc. also offers the 401k investment benefit as it will allow the new employee to contribute to their retirement benefits with a 7% match to all investments. The employee will also be compensated during the allowed stress, sick, holidays and vacation days.


Part B

Question 1

A reasonable employee compensation and benefits package must be reasonably competitive, well-structured and affordable. The pay package offered to the new secretary is positive enough to attract and retain most of the top-notch secretaries to Apple Inc. A company that refuses to compensate its employee as well as others in various firms within the same industry is not likely to attract exceptional candidates which results to poor overall company performance (Armstrong, & Taylor, 2014). Once exceptional candidates and talents come seeking for employment at Apple Inc., the human resource department must make sure that the compensation is competitive enough to motivate employees to accept the job and retain them in the company. The pay package offered to the new secretary will be a source of satisfaction, morale, loyalty, and motivation is given that she is happy to work with the leading electronic company across the globe (Armstrong, & Taylor, 2014). Although compensation is not the only source of motivation, it is true to say that employees who are well paid often provide better customer services, which results in the growth and development of a firm.

Question 2

According to the requirements of the Fair Labor Standards, Act (FLSA) employers must categorize their workers as exempts or non-exempts. Non-exempts are employees who are covered by FLSA laws as compared to exempt employees. Additionally, nonexempt workers are entitled to compensation for overtime time (Armstrong, & Taylor, 2014). In essence, a worker who earns on an hourly basis is a nonexempt employee regardless of their job description. Presently, the basic pay for an exempt worker should be $455 per week. More so, the exemption from overtime compensation is limited to workers performing relatively high-level duties that involve a huge deal of discretion or judgment.

The title of the job is of insignificant usefulness in the determination of whether a person is an exempt or non-exempt employee. For instance, secretaries are still secretaries even if the company gives them the title of an executive assistant. As such, whether the description of a specific position qualifies as exempt or non-exempt relies on the nature of the particular duties (Armstrong, & Taylor, 2014). The HR department must evaluate the responsibilities of a specific job as well as the nature of the actual post to classify an employee as an exempt or nonexempt. This evaluation is essential because a worker is paid in a monthly or yearly basis is still nonexempt unless if performing exempt job duties such administrative duties.

The new secretary at Apple Inc. is a nonexempt employee who is entitled to overtime compensation. Apple Inc. calculates overtime hours according to the FLSA laws. As such, the secretaries overtime hours will be calculated by determining her straight time rate of pay and multiplying by all overtime hours worked. Them the company will add 1/2 of her regular hourly rate of pay times all overtime hours worked. All the overtime duties that are approved or ordered by the company will be compensated.

Question 3

Apart from offering good salaries and incentives, a company must invest in other strategies to ensure that employees stay motivated, innovative and satisfied. One of the most effective ways to provide motivation is to offer additional educational programs for the employee. This will make her feel that she is also benefiting from the company by acquiring additional skills from the program (Armstrong, & Taylor, 2014). Secondly, every employee’s efforts should be recognized and rewarded. Research shows, that if an employee 70% of employees who are recognized and rewarded by their managers for a job well done, they are more likely to work for the company for a longer time.

Another benefit that the new secretary will enjoy in three months is Apple’s Voluntary benefits. These benefits will include financial planning services, student loan repayment plan, pet insurance, and identity theft protection.  Our new employee will also enjoy a very flexible work schedule considering she will have a personal assistant employed by the company. She is allowed to delegate some of the responsibilities to her PA as far as she takes responsibility for every work done. This will reduce work burnout considering that Apple Inc. is a huge company with very many activities going on. The flexible work schedule will also allow her to spend more time with her family. Additionally, the new employee can enjoy parental leaves and child care coverage. Lastly, the new secretary will have a commuter allowance in that she will have a car to use.

Question 4

In the United States of America, employees are protected by the Department of Labor Administrators and Enforces. However, other Acts such as the Fair Labor Standards Act, Equal Pay Act All, Occupational Safety and Health Act, Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Pregnancy Discrimination Act among others. These laws protect employees from discrimination in terms of color, ethnicity, disability, sexual orientation and religion. Both private and public companies are subject to these laws (Armstrong, & Taylor, 2014). The new Financial Reform Laws affect the compensation and benefits of executives and corporate employees. A company can incur various penalties for non-compliance including fines and de-listing.

Companies are also obligated to pay employees on time as agreed on the contract. According to the Fair Labor Standards Act, an employee should only work for 40 hours per week and should be compensated for overtime hours. However, an employer cannot force an employee to work for more than 48 hours per week although an employee can choose to work for extra hours. The government laws also influence compensation in that, so benefits are mandated fundamental rights. These include the Federal Insurance Contributions Act, Social Security, Unemployment insurance, and Medicare. Companies are expected to withhold a tax of 6.2% for Social Security, 1.45% Medicare tax and 0.9% if the base salary exceeds $200,000


Question 5


Question 6

The human resource department of Apple Inc. focuses on decreasing financial risks to optimize returns on investment while building on human capital. The HR department is charged with different responsibilities which include incentive compensation, selection, and recruitment, employee development, leadership development, and employee relations among others (Storey, 2014).  The HR department offers competitive compensation and benefits packages to attract and retain talented staff meaning that their investment in their employees is not lost from constant recruitments. Generally, the geographical location, as well as the employment status, is essential considerations made for compensations. This helps the employee feel that they are compensated as other employees in other companies holding the same position (Storey, 2014). According to the HR department, the Economic Reward counts as the best retention strategy by Apple. Workers are recognized and rewarded periodical stock grants for jobs well done. It motivates the employees to create wealth for the company and realize personal skills and potential.



Armstrong, M. and Taylor, S., (2014). Armstrong’s handbook of human resource management practice. Kogan Page Publishers.

Khan, U. A., Alam, M. N., & Alam, S. (2015). A critical analysis of the internal and external environment of Apple Inc. International Journal of Economics, Commerce and Management3(6), 955-961.

Storey, J., (2014). New Perspectives on Human Resource Management (Routledge Revivals). Routledge.