Perhaps the most significant improvement in the quality of life over the last fifty years has been the explosion of choice.

Our parents may have shopped at one or two department stores. We visit hundreds of boutiques and specialty retailers in the course of a year. Their choice was largely between three car manufacturers. We can select our wheels from dozens of international makers and a vast proliferation of models. In fashion, entertainment, lifestyle, careers, we see informed and educated consumers making individual choices that enrich their lives in countless ways previous generations could hardly have imagined.

So it stands to reason that the luxury of choice can now extend to the individual structuring of compensation and benefit packages offered at the workplace. Customizing one's benefits to one's lifestyle, age, priorities and responsibilities is now an integral part of managing one's pre-tax income in many hundreds, if not thousands of Canadian companies. And in the process of "shopping" the benefits offered, each employee becomes self-educated in the real costs and functional benefits of the dollars their employers make available to them, and, unlike the company-imposed, one-size-fits-all package, comes to newly appreciate the real worth of those dollars in personal, practical ways.

Thanks to The Flexperts' interactive web site, "shopping" and evaluating those employee benefit options is simpler, more graphic and more satisfying than ever before.