As smaller companies continue to navigate the post-pandemic landscape, both employee engagement and well-being are key to steering the ship. By building benefits and perks of real value into your business, employees are more likely to stay put; driving productivity and growth through the years of change to come.
From wellness programs to retirement planning, benefits and perks may sound appealing; but how can businesses offer workforces a package of real value? The bells-and-whistles approach may help employees feel appreciated in the short term. Yet businesses unable to deliver on their promises risk losing the trust of their employees altogether; often with financial repercussions to follow.
With the four-day workweek dominating the headlines, the way we define benefits and perks is fast-transforming. But those who take a transparent approach to understand what employees truly need (and what they as businesses can truly offer) are more likely to succeed in making these ideal scenarios a reality.
Aren’t benefits and perks the same thing?
Before a business can assess its current offering, it’s important to recognize the difference between benefits and perks. Benefits, like health insurance, are something all employees need. Perks, on the other hand, are something all employees want. By categorizing these elements more clearly, businesses can effectively shape their packages. In other words, they can start to prioritize the components that really matter.
A well-balanced offering of benefits and perks that impact employees on a personal level can also contribute to a thriving company culture; in turn, this results in a healthier, happier workforce, while future-proofing a business in the process.
We explore four benefits and four perks to consider building into your employee compensation offering.
4 benefits to build into your business
1. Health insurance
With the stress and strain brought on by the pandemic, businesses that prioritize both the physical and mental wellbeing of staff can foster an environment where employees feel safe and supported were the unexpected to happen. It’s a legal requirement for businesses with more than 50 employees to offer health coverage, with a number of options to consider; from health, dental and vision insurance, to health reimbursement arrangements (HRAs), and more.
2. Parental leave
While this won’t apply to all staff members, the employees who do require support when starting a family will truly feel the benefits. Businesses who actively support their employees’ path to parenthood – both mothers and fathers – can truly blaze a trail. What’s more, paid parental leave will more likely result in employees returning to work more engaged, and more empowered than ever before – simply because they feel supported.
3. Life insurance
It’s something we never tend to think about. Therefore, it’s not surprising that the majority of us are underprepared when it comes to life insurance. Yet if the worst were to happen, the lack of a policy in place can have a profound impact on an individual’s loved ones. Offering peace of mind through the most difficult of times, businesses that provide life insurance are widening the net by creating a safe place for both employees and their families to grow.
4. Paid vacation (and sick days)
While paid vacation may be offered by a business – how comfortable do employees feel requesting it? Taking time out should never be frowned upon, rather, it should be encouraged. A burnt-out workforce is not something any business can afford to risk. Time away from work is essential for the mental and physical well-being of all team members, so that they may return feeling refreshed. Likewise, ensuring employees are entitled to paid sick days can help drive productivity – encouraging them to make a full recovery.
4 perks to build into your business
1. Free lunches
A lunch with colleagues may not sound like a lot. But businesses who recognize the importance of team building can use this time to help workforces forge stronger connections. In the age of hybrid working, in-person interactions are precious and should be treated as such. For health and wellbeing purposes, it’s also important for businesses to actively encourage taking a lunch break. Whether that’s a weekly breakfast meeting or heading outside of the office once a month; a workday meal courtesy of the company can go a long way to boosting employee morale.
2. Student loan assistance
As something many of your employees have in common, student loans can prove a burden on anyone’s shoulders. With student loan debt totaling $1.75 trillion in April 2022, businesses that support their employees can help to relieve stress and lighten the financial load. Fast-tracking the pay-off process, companies who offer repayment assistance alongside the traditional 401 (k) benefit can also empower workforces to contribute to their retirement fund.
3. Wellness programs
If the past few years have taught us anything, it’s this: wellness matters. Without regular check-ins, our everyday health and happiness are put at risk. Wellness programs can not only complement an employee’s existing healthcare plan; it can also promote a healthy lifestyle – both inside and outside the office. Whether that’s an audiobook subscription, standing desk, or online mindfulness class, this can be interpreted however businesses may choose. For those with a smaller budget, monthly wellness check-ins can prove just as effective.
4. Employee recognition/rewards
Everyone feels good about doing good work – and even better when they get recognized for it. Employee reward schemes are a great team-wide initiative, giving staff something to aim for while driving productivity. Better still, enabling employees to nominate their colleagues for good work can help re-build that sense of camaraderie once lost to a remote-working world. The rewards themselves don’t have to be flashy. More often than not, it’s the few words of kindness or the perfect cup of coffee that truly makes someone’s day.
How will you make changes to grow your business this year?
With a team to support you every step of the way, ADDA Infusion is in your corner. From full-service HR in-house to on-demand requirements, our solutions are built to meet your bespoke requirements.
Get in touch with our team today!