In a world in which job security is scarce, you may not want to approach your employer asking for perks such as a flexible schedule, telecommuting, extra days of leave or educational opportunities. Nevertheless, many employers are opting to give perks over raises to attract and retain valuable employees. Obtaining these perks requires more than walking into your boss’ office and asking. Instead you need a plan that is business-benefits focused. Here are tips for getting perks are work.

Have a plan

Creating plan makes it clear in your mind what you want and therefore easier to articulate to your boss. Further it shows that you aren’t asking for  perk on a whim, but that you’ve given the idea plenty of thought. Your plan should include not just what you want, but also how you’ll deal with the ramifications your perks might have on the company. For example, if you want an extra week of leave, who will cover you while you’re gone? If you want to telecommute, how will the office stay in touch with you and know you’re working?

Remind your boss how good you are

A quality personal brand is essential to asking for and getting perks. But even the best workers may have to remind their bosses of their value to the company. Highlight your achievements, awards and accomplishments in terms of how they benefited your company. If you work well with your colleagues or have a leadership role, let your boss know about that, as well.

Focus on what’s in it for your boss

Your boss might care about you, but ultimately, his concern is the bottom line. He’s not going to let you telecommute simply because you’re having childcare issue or pay for a weeklong conference because the topic is interesting to you. Reframe your perk request to accentuate the benefits it will bring to your company. For example, telecommuting could increase your productivity while decreasing strain on office resources. A training might lead you bring in more sales or help you network to gain a big client.

Be flexible

Many employers want to be generous, but can’t meet your request as you’ve asked for it. However, your boss might be willing to negotiate something in the middle. For example, maybe instead of telecommuting three days a week, your boss will allow one or two days. Or instead of paying all expenses to a conference, your boss might pay the conference fee, but you have to cover travel and lodging.

Perks are not rights, but instead they are privileges you can earn for being a valuable employee. In a tough economy, employers want as much value for their buck as they can get, and are willing to give valuable employees perks to lure them to the job and entice them to stay. If you provide great value, don’t be afraid to take advantage of or request perks, especially if you can show how doing so would be benefit to your company.