Traditional employee benefits have long been the cornerstone of benefit packages. While traditional employee benefits will remain a staple, their power to “wow” prospective employees is becoming overshadowed by more outside the box benefits. As you strive to keep up and stand out in the employment market, the impression of your benefits package will be mostly defined by the unique benefits you offer.
When considering how to invest in employee benefits in a way that helps you attract and retain great people, it’s important to start by considering what your target employees truly value. For example, Millennial workers are more open to paying high-deductible health plans and likely to appreciate the value of Health Savings Accounts. On the other hand, they are not likely to put emphasis on long term disability.
At various stages of life, people appreciate things differently. In my experience, the prevailing soft benefit among people is flexibility. It comes in many forms depending on organizational structure and culture. The knowledge that an employer will extend whatever flexibility it can to help employees balance life situations with work is an important foundation. Families with young children are seeking more flexibility in order to balance the demands of childcare. Likewise, other families face concerns over elder care which may come with the same or greater demands. Studies have also found that 35% of millennials would take a pay cut in order to work remotely.
In my company, we start our annual business planning by asking employees to list their top 10 goals for the year. We’ve even extended that conversation into the interview process when it makes sense. I remind people that we are working to live, so it makes sense to start with life goals when creating the goals and plans of the business.
Consider your employees or prospective employees situations. How can you add value to their lives? I see more companies offering employee benefits including unlimited time off, hiatus, remote working opportunities, and various wellness programs including financial wellness like student loan repayment and mortgage programs. No one company is the same so it’s important to know your people and what is important to them and then customize a benefits package that serves them best.
I’d love to hear about your most outside the box employee benefit! Join the conversation or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.