Staff benefits you aren’t thinking about but should be
Employers can’t spend any longer failing to consider a more innovative approach to staff benefits. The landscape is shifting quickly, driven by mobile technology and rapidly shifting attitudes towards work. New perks and benefits are emerging which wouldn’t even have been possible, let alone entertained, years ago. Getting your head around where the benefits market is going and embracing change will be vital to attracting and retaining quality talent in the future.
Staff benefits your business should be thinking about:
Flexibility beyond flexitime
While many employers continue to struggle to get their heads around the idea of flexible working policies, other employers are shaking off a lot of other traditions. Job sharing, high skilled positions going part time, and more remote working are on the rise in niche job fields.
Mental health support
As the charity Mind would be eager to point out, we all have mental health just like we all have physical health, it’s not just there when it’s going wrong. We bemoan circumstances and jobs which let employees’ physical health deteriorate, but the responsibility falls to employers to make sure there’s help available for staff when they need it.
Especially valuable to employees just entering the workforce, or those without any money saved, flexible banking lets employees access money they’ve earned but haven’t been paid yet through a third party service at flat fee (as opposed to the interest rates on credit cards or short term loans).
Some forward-thinking tech firms have been offering their staff access to on-site healthcare with a dedicated medical staff. For those who don’t have the campus or resources to pull that off, the alternative is to make sure staff have the chance to get access to medical care during their working day at shorter notice. This means staff aren’t put off seeking preventative or routine medical care.
We’re seeing a lot of large companies investing in making their business a much more hospitable place to be, which includes features like on-site access to good food. If you can’t host a cafeteria, you can still organise for quality food to reach your business every day instead of relying on fast food.
A lot of employers find their dedicated employees will forgo holidays and travel to focus on spending time and money at home. Some companies are putting aside a budget every year to pay for employees to use their holiday allowance to take in some new places and cultures.
Taking part in joint classes gives employees something to bond on and grow together with a common touchpoint. Help staff grow into healthier, more rounded individuals with access to classes and experiences they wouldn’t normally go out of their way to organise for themselves.
Surprisingly, a lot of workplaces without a public-facing component aren’t interested in letting their staff dress casually in the workplace. Many younger employees don’t even have the wardrobe to dress for a formal work environment, let alone the desire.
Student loan repayments
With no end in sight for university student loans, being able to drive down the amount of debt students take on to get their degree can be a major selling point when they’re shopping around for their first positions after graduation, particularly if it’s incorporated into their professional work experience.
Not every business has the time or budget to introduce the most dynamic staff benefits which can be offered by tech and finance giants, but you can take a bit of inspiration from what they’re doing.
The most helpful benefits they’re offering now are often the canary in the coalmine for what other employers will be offering soon, and where candidates’ priorities will lay. It’s up to business who want to compete in attracting talent to find a way to offer a competitive work benefits package.