A signing bonus is an amount of money paid by an employer to a newly hired employee as bonus or incentive for joining that company. This is usually given as a token of appreciation to the employee, which forms part of the remuneration package to induce or entice an employee to join the company. A signing bonus is a one time payment made only upon the acceptance of employment or the signing of the contract. It reduces the risk of the company of providing regular bonuses to employees incase said hire falls below the expectations of the company.
The practice of giving signing bonuses is commonly used in contractual employment in the sports and entertainment industry. Lately however, the call center industry has also joined the bandwagon in order to attract good employees in the ranks. There are special provisions however in the contract with regards to the receipt of the signing bonus. Hereunder are some of the common stipulations used in the call center industry.
- The signing bonus received by the employee usually includes a lock in period in which employee must not quit until a specified period else, he or she will be forced by law to return the signing bonus to the employer.
- The signing bonus is not given right away after the employee signs the employment contract. This is apparently used by the company to protect itself against dishonest applicants who might run away with the money after signing the contract. Instead, the signing bonus is only given after the employee renders a specific period in the company.
- The practice of giving signing bonuses is not usually implemented to new hires. It usually given to employees who have rendered at least six months or have finished the probationary period and signing bonus is included in one’s regularization.
- Contrary to common conception, signing bonuses are not given as a lump sum of money. This is especially true for bonuses that are quite big such as P25, 000 or higher in a call center company. Instead, the singing bonus is given in regular installments.
- Signing bonuses are not required by law. The implementation of giving signing bonuses depends on the policies of the call center company. Not all companies provide signing bonuses. But most of the largest call center companies in the Philippines like NCO, Convergys, Stellar and People Support give signing bonuses. The amount of singing bonuses also differs between P5000 to P25000.
- In some instances, the signing bonus is not necessarily a sum of money but a gift in kind such as gadgets, cell phones, etc.
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