Benefits, or “bennies” as the cool kids call it, is picking up steam and becoming a major conversation piece in the wild and crazy world of Human Resources (HR). Human Resources service provider Zenefits even has an Ultimate Guide to Fringe Benefits. What makes a benefit a benefit? Does your company consider free coffee a benefit? Chances are the notion of what your employees see as benefits has changed dramatically even over the last few years. Not only has the benefit landscape changed, but the employee benefit desires have evolved in equally dramatic fashion. Whether you have seasoned HR staff, or you’re a solo entrepreneur doing it all, we want to share how it’s all about the benefits, baby.
The Anatomy of Employee Benefits
Decoding what a benefit looks like to a tenured employee who has been with you for a decade compared to that of your most recent hire may be an eye opening experience. Technically speaking, a benefit is anything above and beyond compensation. The term fringe benefit applies to anything you provide that isn’t considered a basic benefit like health insurance, holidays, and paid time off. Some employers consider coffee at work a fringe benefit. Benefits, and the people you are offering them to, have evolved and fast. Things like snacks and parking passes may not seem like benefits to your employees but rather it just comes with the job. However, according to Zenefits’ Fringe Bennies ebook, “68% of employees rate additional fringe benefits and perks just as highly (or higher) than healthcare benefits and retirement plans.” Whoa.
The kinds of benefits that are considered traditional in today’s workforce are things that help your employees stay happy, healthy, productive, and engaged. These are usually things like:
- Health Insurance. You can’t stop there though, employees may come with an expectation that you subsidize a portion (or all) of their premium.
- Dental Insurance. Same as above regarding subsidy.
- Paid Vacation (aka PTO). Oh, and they want to use it too, so let them! You want a healthy and energized workforce, so don’t be a stooge with vacay. Unlimited PTO is becoming more and more popular because it self-regulates and there’s less of an HR headache with tracking.
- Paid Sick Time. Arizona passed the paid sick time law last year, but before that it wasn’t even required that employers provide this ‘benefit.’
- Retirement Plans (401k). For small businesses this can be a costly benefit, but financial health for you (especially as a business owner) and your employees is a benefit that pays dividends for years to come (pun intended – what can I say, I’m a numbers nerd).
- Mileage Reimbursements. Employees traveling for business really should be compensated. Check the IRS regulations each year for the reimbursement amount.
Now the fun stuff!
Non Traditional Fringe Benefits
We offer all of the traditional benefits, and several of the fringe benefits listed below. I’m always looking for fun and inexpensive ways to boost our benefits package at StringCan.
- Disability and supplemental insurance
- Vision insurance
- Life insurance
- Pet insurance
- Flexible working schedule
- Meals and happy hours
- Gym reimbursement or membership
- Financial wellness programs
- Professional development and learning
- Cell phone reimbursement
- Public transportation assistance or commuter benefits
- Childcare services
- Games onsite
- Student loan repayment
- Dry cleaning
- Employee discounts
- In office massages
I could go on and on – I love sharing ways businesses can attract and retain top talent, and I’m exceptionally proud of the work we’ve done here as well. I’d love to hear what kinds of benefits mean the most to you! Contact me at StringCan today!