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Salary, Net Salary, Gross Salary, Cost to Company: What is the
Salary, Net Salary, Gross Salary, Cost to Company are they same or different. For most people it is
plain confusion especially when one gets a new job. The excitement of getting first job is punctured on
getting the first pay. It is usually less than what the fresher employee expected. Usually in the campus
interviews company advertise their Cost to Company (or CTC) and people mistake their salary to be
based on that (CTC/12). Educated but have No Financial Education is about the confusions of a new
employee. In this article we shall try to cover what makes the salary? What is the difference between
Salary, Net Salary, Gross Salary, Cost to Company .
How people earn money?
The three broad ways in which people earn money are as follows:
 Working for someone else or Employee ,
 Working for themselves or Self Employed ,
 and running a business.
When a person works for someone else or company, (s)he is then said to hold a job and is
called Employee . The person or the company he or she works for is called Employer. Money that is
paid is called as Salary or Income or Wage.
As explained earlier Money that is received under Employer-Employee relationship is called
as Salary . If one is freelancer or are hired by an organization on contract basis, their income would not
be treated as salary income.( In such case your income would be treated as income from business and
Did you know that word salary has come from Latin salrium based on salrius which means pertaining
to salt. The word appeared in 1350-1400. In those days, salt , regular ordinary table salt, was a prized
and valuable commodity. It was money given to Roman soldiers to buy salt. The phrases the salt of the
earth orworth your salt refer to the high value of salt.
The salary consists of following parts.
Basic Salary: As the name suggests, this forms the very basis of salary. This is the core of salary, and
many other components may be calculated based on this amount. It usually depends on one’s grade
within the company’s salary structure.It is a fixed part of one’s compensation structure.
Allowance: It is the amount received by an individual paid by his/her employer in addition to salary to
meet some service requirements such as Dearness Allowance(DA), House Rent Allowance (HRA), Leave
Travel Assistance(LTA) , Lunch Allowance, Conveyance Allowance , Children’s Education Allowance,
City compensatory Allowance etc. Allowance can be fully taxable, partly or non taxable. One can
read Understanding the components of your salary and their taxation for more details.
Perquisite: Is any benefit or amenity granted or provided free of cost or at concessional rate such
as Rent free unfurnished house, Rent free furnished house, Motor car facility, Reimbursement of Gas,
Electricity & Water, Club facility, Domestic Servant Facility, Interest Subsidy on Loan , Reimbursement of
medical bills, Reimbursement of Hospital bills, Reimbursement of telephone bills, Benefits derived by
employee stock option, and so on.
How are perquisites taxed?
Since these are non-cash components, they cannot be taxed directly. So the income tax laws attach a
certain value to each of these components and charges a tax on them. The calculation of this value varies
from category to category. Nevertheless, the thumb rule across all categories is that only those benefits
that you use for personal purpose will be considered as perquisites.
Deductions: Two type of deduction are made from salary
 Compulsory deduction such as Provident Fund, Income tax,Professional Tax (where applicable) .
 Optional deduction such as recovery for advance or loan if taken, voluntary contribution to P.F etc
Provident Fund Contribution
Provident fund contribution has two sides – the employer’s contribution and employee’s
contribution. This is usually 12 per cent of the basic salary. However, this contribution is not paid out . It
is directly deposited in Provident Fund(PF) account and paid to employee when he retires or
resigns.There is also employee’s contribution to PF. This amount is deducted from his monthly salary
and deposited in his PF account. For details on provident fund you can readProvident Fund (PF) and
Voluntary Provident Fund (VPF)
Different types of salary
Gross Salary: is the amount of salary paid after adding all benefits and allowances and before deducting
any tax.
Net Salary: is what is left of your salary after deductions have been made.
Take Home Salary: Is usually the Net Salary unless there are some personal deductions like loan or
bond re-payments.
Cost to Company: Companies use the term “Cost to Company” to calculate the total cost to to employ .
i.e. all the costs associated with an employment contract. Major part of CTC comprises of compulsory
deductibles. These include deductions for provident fund, medical insurance etc. They form a part of your
compensation structure but you not get them as a part of in-hand salary. As such, although it increases
your CTC, it does not increment your net salary.
Let’s see an example explaining the salary. An arbitrary salary break up is given below (Note: salary
structure varies from one company to another):
Component of Salary(per annum or p.a) Amount
Basic Salary 480,000
Dearness Allowance 48,000
House Rent Allowance 96,000
Conveyance Allowance 12,000
Entertainment Allowance 12,000
Overtime Allowance 12,000
Medical Reimbursements 15,000
Gross Salary 6,75,000
Benefits vary from company to company. Example of benefits for the above employee are:
Medical insurance 2000
Provident Fund (12% of Basic) 57,600 (12% of 4,80,000)
Laptop 50,000
Total Benefits 109600
Cost to Company=Gross Salary + Benefits 6,75,000 + 109600=7,84,600
Benefits would also vary from company to company. In some Laptop may not be provided. In some cost
of cubicle would be added. For example: If rent of office space is Rs 200 per sq ft and then a cubicle of 6
feet by 8 feet (i.e48 square feet) would cost Rs. 9,600 per month, or Rs. 1,15,200 per year. Which can be
added to your CTC. Please note CTC varies from company to company. One can read Cost To Company
or CTC salary: Understanding and Calculation for more details.
How tax affect the various components of salary
Component of Salary(per
annum or p.a) Amount Tax
Basic Salary 480,000 Full amount is taxable 480,000
Dearness Allowance 48,000 Depends on company policy. Mostly fully taxable. 48,000
House Rent Allowance 96,000 Applicable if living in a rented house. Minimum of three amounts (Note:Calculation shown below) 52,800
Conveyance Allowance 12,000
Conveyance allowance of Rs 9,600 per annum is exempted from tax. If salary component is more than 9,600,
the remaining part is taxable.In this case:12,000-9600=2400 2,400
Entertainment Allowance 12,000 Depends on company policy. Mostly fully taxable. 12,000
Overtime Allowance 12,000 Fully taxable 12,000
Medical Reimbursements 15,000 If substantiated with bills, are exempt to a limit of Rs 15,000 annually 0
Gross Salary 6,75,000 Gross Taxable Salary 6,07,200
HRA Calculation
The minimum of the three amounts will be exempt from tax:
a. Actual HRA allowance in the salary package, that is Rs 96,000
b. HRA received less 10 per cent of salary and DA, that is 43,200 (96,000 – 10% of 528,000)
c. If you live in metropolitan (Delhi, Chennai, Bombay and Calcutta), 50 per cent of salary and DA
However, if you live in any other city, it is 40 per cent of salary + DA. So, in this case it would be Rs
2,11,200 (40% of 528,000)
So HRA will be minimum of ( 96,000; 43,200; 2,11,200) which is 43,200 which will be exempted.
So the portion that will be taxed in this example is = 96,000 – 43,200 = 52,800
As Gross Taxable Salary 6,07,200 falls in the highest tax bracket. This tax amount includes education
cess too. Assumption: Employee does not make any tax saving investment. Tax based on Assement
Year 2011-2012 : 57,103. For tax estimator Calculator of InvestmentYogi is very helpful.
Tax 57,103
Employee PF contribution(12% of Basic) 57,600
Professional Tax 2400
Total Deductions 1,17,103
Net Salary = Gross Taxable Salary – Tax =6,07,200- 1,17,103=4,90,097
Net Monthly Salary =490097/12=40,841.41
Can Take Home salary be increased?
Yes it is possible and that too legally. An employee can plan taxes and increase the take home. If
employee invests Rs 1, lakh in tax saving instruments, Section 80C such as PPF, Equity Linked Saving
Scheme(ELSS) etc he can save taxes. So now employee in above example will be taxed on 6,07,200-
1,00,00 = 5,07,200.
Amount to be taxed 5,07,200
Tax 33,413
Employee PF contribution(12% of Basic) 57,600
Professional Tax 2400
Total Deductions 93,413
Net Salary = Gross Taxable Salary – Tax =6,07,200- 93,413=5,13,787
Net Monthly Salary =513787/12=42,815.58
Tax saving instruments under section 80C, 80G, House loan etc are beautifully depicted in
this infographic. Optimum Salary Structure – Maximum In Hand Salary Or Minimum Tax Liability explains
how restructuring the salary would increase the take home
A paycheck is a document/record issued by an employer to an employee which shows how much money
an employee have earned and how much tax or insurance etc. has been deducted. .It will typically detail
the gross income and all taxes and any other deductions such as retirement plan or pension
contributions, insurances, garnishments, or charitable contributions taken out of the gross amount to
arrive at the final net amount of the pay. One can read format of payslip or see a sample here.
Form 16
If you are salaried employee in an organization, then you get the salary after deducting tax by the
employer. This process is called as Tax Deduction at Source (TDS). Company must issue a Form 16
which contains the details about the salary earned by that employee and how much tax deducted. The
Tax deducted is paid to government by the company. Form 16 is the proof of employee’s income and
tax paid to the govt. It is issued under section 203 of Income Tax Act for Tax. Tax payer has to use the
Form 16 to file the Income Tax return every financial year. One can read Understand Your Form 16
Disclaimer: While efforts have been made to ensure the accuracy of the information provided in the
content, the web site or the author shall not be held responsible for any loss caused to any person
whatsoever who accesses or uses or is supplied with the content (consisting of articles and
information).Do you know the biggest employers in the world. Wal-Mart , a chain of department stores
across the globe, employs 2.1 million employees worldwide. The Indian State Railways which has 1.42
million employees, is largest employer in India.Ref: Salary Income Tax – Heads of Income:
Salary Understanding CTC and Your Salary Breakup, Tax implications of salary components, All you
wanted to know about CTC
Earning section of our website covers: basics of earning such as How people earn
money by working for someone else , How people earn money by starting their own business, Factors on
which person’s income depends , Story on when we value money,Profit and Loss, Salaries of some
famous Indian personalities, Salaries of some famous International personalities, Best jobs in the
world, Worst jobs in the world
Hope we are able to explain the difference between Salary, Net Salary, Gross Salary, Cost to
Company. Did you find information useful? If you find some information missing or incorrect please let us

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