It is no secret that employees are an organization’s most valuable – and most expensive – asset. So, it’s important to take care of them and treat them right. But competitive salaries are not enough to attract and retain good employees anymore. Offering a comprehensive benefits package, that includes workplace perks, can actually be one of the most important practices a company can implement. It shows your commitment to employees, demonstrating how much you appreciate them and that you care about their overall well-being.
Employee benefits actually come in two varieties – traditional and perks. Traditional benefits typically have an associated dollar amount that is provided to employees, whereas employee perks are more closely tied to quality of life for employees. Traditional benefits include things like health insurance, retirement options, and bonus plans. Alternatively, employee perks include things such as paid time off, flexible work options, and wellness programs.
Employers can get creative when it comes to extra perks too – don’t be afraid to think outside the box. Concierge services, onsite childcare, free meals, and paid volunteer hours are becoming more and more common. But extra perks don’t have to break the bank either. Organizations with fewer resources can still offer things that make a big impact. Budget-friendly examples include a casual dress code, in office game days, occasional chair massages, or internal book clubs.
Some people may look at extra perks and think companies are wasting their money, but that is not the case at all. In fact, employers should do their best to develop a benefits package that includes those perks. Research has proven that even the simplest of things can increase employee retention, work-life balance, productivity, and ultimately, the overall job satisfaction of your workforce.
Employee retention alone is worth it. In a competitive job market, it can cost thousands of dollars and months of recruiting to replace a good employee. Then you have to onboard and train them, which can take several more months and increase the workload of your existing staff members. Offering a well-rounded benefits package could actually end up saving you time and money in the long run.
Employees also value work-life balance, and perks that help support this significantly increase job satisfaction. Common examples include paid vacation, sick, or personal days. Getting more time off during the year helps employees unwind and come back refreshed, or have the time they need to take care of personal matters at home.
Flexible work options – such as flexible schedules or remote work – just might be the most valuable (and cost-effective) benefit you can offer employees to support their work-life balance. According to research, employees say that flexible work options make more of an impact on their satisfaction than any other employee perk. Employees who can set their own hours or work from home are happier at work, less likely to experience burnout, and less likely to feel stressed. All of this ultimately increases productivity for the employer too.
Productivity is not the only benefit that these types of perks offer, however. Health-related benefits help employees in a number of ways, too. For example, an employee who takes care of him or herself through a wellness program has a decreased chance of getting sick. And too many sick days can eventually cut into an employee’s paycheck or cause them to fall behind on their work. Both can create additional stress or anxiety for the employee.
Here at Accel, we believe in the value of both traditional benefits and the extra perks. Our employees enjoy the following as part of our comprehensive benefits package.
- Medical, dental, and vision insurance
- Life and disability insurance
- Accident, critical illness, and hospital indemnity insurance
- Flexible spending accounts
- Health savings accounts
- 401k retirement plan
- Tuition reimbursement
- Student loan assistance
- Employee Assistance Program
- Wellness reimbursements
- Paid time off benefits
- Paid volunteer hours
- Paid expenses toward licensing and professional development
- Discounts on personal insurance
- Casual dress code
- Flexible schedules
- Remote work options
- Onsite snacks and beverages
Cash isn’t necessarily the end-all-be-all for employees as employers might think. In the war for talent, perks are what set organizations apart from one another. Employees want to feel appreciated and supported both in and outside of the office, and there are a variety of ways to do that. Just make sure what you offer is effective and useful to your employees.
Written by: Tina Miller