5 Cool, Low-Cost Trends in Work Perks and Benefits

2 of the 5 Top Trends in HR for 2018 relate to employee benefits and wellness.

Employers are being looked to more and more to help their employees be as healthy and whole as they can be. Companies who are able to embrace this direction are finding success in recruiting and retaining top talent, while those who are unwilling to try new things are getting left behind.

Benefits and perks are necessary for a competitive total compensation strategy. Total wellness approach to benefits and perks is necessary for a competitive culture with thriving talent.

Here are 5 low-cost options your organization can implement to improve your benefits and perks program:

  1. Expand your Employee Assistance Program (EAP). EAPs have come a long way. Vendors not only offer mental health and substance abuse help — but also legal advice, financial advice, nutritional advice, and professional development advice. At a rate of $1 – $2 per employee per month, it’s very reasonably priced and can go a long way to helping your employees and their loved ones be totally healthy and whole.
  2. Personal Finance Education. Set it and forget it is no longer an option for your approach to your retirement benefits. You must provide educational opportunities for employees on their retirement plan options. Many plan sponsors are offering personal budgeting and investing programming as part of their education curriculum. Setup some lunch&learn or on-demand webinars for your employees to learn how to better manage and grow their finances.
  3. Pet Insurance. People are opting for fur babies over human ones. Visits to groomers and veterinarians are expensive. Pet insurance is a great voluntary benefit to help your employees who are parents of four-legged children avoid costly expenses and difficult decisions surrounding the care of their pets. Plans are as low as $30-$40 per month depending on the state and type of animal.
  4. Discount and purchase programs. Every bit that you can help an employee keep from spending helps them feel appreciated — which increases their loyalty and respect for the company. There are great discount programs out there which cost $1-$5 per employee per month and will allow your employees to enjoy discounts on event tickets, travel bookings, movie tickets, car rentals, etc. There are others which are NO COST like cell phone discounts, home and auto insurance discounts, appliance and electronic discounts. And there are programs which allow employees to make installment purchases via paycheck deductions, which simultaneously help them build and repair their credit.  Help your employees live their best life at reasonable prices.
  5. Time Off for Community Service & Political Activism.  Your employees are impacted by what they see going on in their communities and their world. They want to get involved and be a positive part of the change. Help them do this by encouraging them to serve their community and be politically active. Coupling this with the company’s community service and brand partnerships is even better. Providing a few days off per year for this is progressive and affordable. In some areas of the country, this is even tax deductible! Encourage your employees to be active, educated citizens thru time off for service and activism.

Your total benefits program should be an extension of your company values and culture. If you value the total health and well-being of your employees, you have to choose benefits and perks that demonstrate this.

Consider these 5 benefits/perks as you look at items to add to your offerings. But most of all, be thoughtful and deliberate in your choices to make sure you offerings give true benefit and perks to your employees.

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