Everything You Wanted To Know About Employee Benefits (But Were Afraid to Ask)

Business Management
Josh Plotnek November 8, 2021 9 min read

These days, there are so many different employee benefits that business owners can provide for their workers. These include financial rewards like bonuses and stock options, or non-monetary benefits that improve an employee’s work-life balance. Whatever the case, let’s break down everything you need to know about employee benefits.

Team Parties - An Example Of Employee Benefits

Quick Guide

    Your employees are the backbone supporting your entire business operation. Therefore, they deserve to feel wanted and appreciated. 

    Employee benefits, whether they’re medical insurance packages, parental leave or gym memberships, can go a long way to showing your employees just how much you, as an employer, care. 

    But that’s just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the hows, whats and whys of employee benefits. Without further ado, here’s everything you need to know.

    What Exactly Are Employee Benefits?

    Employee benefits (also known as job perks) are what a company gives to their employees beyond their standard salary or wage compensation. They cover indirect pay such as health insurance, overtime, stock options, vacation, retirement plans, profit sharing and much more. 

    And even though two different construction companies (for example) can offer the same salary, the employee benefits they provide can vary drastically. When job offers are concerned, employee benefits can make all the difference. In the US, health insurance is a standout employee benefit in many jobs.

    Employee Benefits Statistics
    https://hbr.org/2017/02/the-most-desirable-employee-benefits

    Why Is It Important To Provide Employee Benefits?

    Surveys show that about 60% of job searchers highlight employee benefits as a huge factor when considering whether or not to accept a job offer. It also showed that 80% of employees would prefer more benefits instead of a raise in salary.

    So as you can see, there are various ways that companies can benefit from, well, giving employee benefits! Some of the standout ones include:

    • Raises productivity – employees can face all kinds of pressures, both at work and at home. Stress can get in the way of productivity. So it is in any company’s best interest to provide employee benefits. This will help alleviate stress and keep employees focused.
    • Increases employee retention – a report revealed that a staggering 52% of employees have considered looking for a new job in 2021. One of the most effective ways to retain employees is to provide them with the very best benefits. This will make them feel valued and want to stay at the company.
    • Improves recruitment – for HR managers, employee benefits can help improve the recruitment process. If job searchers are made aware of the benefits a company offers, it can help make the job more attractive. 

    Main Types Of Employee Benefits

    Historically, whether you’ve worked in a cleaning business, hospitality, or security, the four main types of employee benefits have been life insurance, medical insurance, disability insurance, and retirement plans.

    These days though, employee benefits take many forms. While the list only continues to grow, there are four distinct categories that employee benefits can fall under:

    • Work benefits
    • Health benefits
    • Financial security benefits
    • Lifestyle benefits

    Let’s break down these four categories into 15 standout examples of employee benefits that you may want to consider providing.

    Work Benefits

    Employees can receive all kinds of benefits that have a positive impact on their job experience. Working hours and paid leave, activities, gifts, and employee clubs are just a few examples.

    Office Perks

    Companies in various industries like staffing, education, and events are trying to make employees feel more at home in their daily operations. They may provide various perks such as free food and beverage, board games, and nap rooms to bring more fun and relaxation to office life.

    Corporate Discounts

    Seeing that many companies produce valuable goods, retail managers, for example, can give workers discounts on in-house products. It not only reinforces the employee’s faith in the brand, but it’s a useful way for companies to test their products before officially releasing them.

    Employees Getting Benefits
    Photo by fauxels from Pexels

    Bonuses

    Showing employees appreciation and recognition for their hard work is a great way to improve employee retention. Rewarding achievements with bonuses motivate employees to perform even higher.

    Training Employees

    Providing employees with training programs and resources is a great way to improve growth and retention. It is, therefore, a useful benefit for both experienced and new employees. Companies can pay workers to take part in e-learning courses or attend lectures.

    Health Benefits

    Companies may pay specifically to cover an employee’s healthcare. According to the BLS, 87% of non-government employers provide health benefits. These can include dismemberment, workplace incidents, dental checkups, and sudden death, amongst other things. 

    Paid Sick Leave

    Staying healthy is the most important part of any employee experience. Those who try to work while sick are less likely to be productive and it will negatively impact the company in general. You can show your employees that you care about their health by providing paid sick leave.

    Wellness Programs

    It’s within any company’s best interest to promote healthy lifestyles for its employees. For example, a security company can provide a wellness program that consists of many initiatives such as weight-loss competitions and gym memberships. 

    Financial Security Benefits

    Most companies are interested in making their employees feel financially secure, which goes beyond salary and minimum wage. Whether it be through insurance, retirement plans, or stock options, these benefits are significant. 

    Insurance Packages

    Insurance plans are ideal ways to actively take care of your employees. As previously mentioned, health insurance is a classic employee benefit that is provided in many American companies. 

    Disability Insurance

    Let’s say you’re a construction worker who becomes disabled during employment. Depending on your needs, the company will provide either short-term or long-term disability insurance for you. Short-term insurance covers up to six months whereas long-term applies to the remainder of the employee’s career.

    A great addition to an employee’s benefits package is to give them a retirement plan. According to BLS, 67% of non-government employers offer a pension or retirement plan. This kind of long-term financial security can be done through a variety of methods such as 401(k)s and pension plans.

    Employee Benefits Infographic
    https://www.thebalancecareers.com/types-of-employee-benefits-and-perks-2060433

    Stock Options

    Many companies offer employees the option to buy shares at a fixed price, which is usually lower than market value. It’s a great incentive that gives employees more ownership over the product or services they are helping to build. 

    Profit-Sharing

    It’s pretty self-explanatory what this employee benefit provides. Companies (retail stores, for example) may choose to share some of their profits with eligible employees. They’ll do this by putting aside some pre-tax profits in a pool, which eligible employees will eventually be awarded. This motivates employees to help increase the company’s profitability.

    Tuition Reimbursement

    Many millennials suffer from the pressures of paying back their student loans. Thankfully, many companies assist their workers with tuition reimbursement benefits. It is a smart initiative, especially since it helps to retain young, educated, talented individuals. 

    Lifestyle Benefits

    Employees can also receive benefits that enhance their lives outside of work. Whether it helps them pursue their passions or provides a better work-life balance, there are various examples.

    Paid Vacation

    Many companies make sure that employees are paid even when they take time off. An extremely popular benefit among companies is unlimited vacation, which allows employees, whether they work in plumbing or healthcare, to take off as much time as they need, as long as they eventually complete all of their work.

    Parental Leave

    This kind of employee benefit provides workers with paid time off, specifically to take care of a family member, usually their child. This kind of leave can come in many forms, whether through maternity leave, paternity leave, or adoption. 

    Childcare Facilities

    Many companies provide this specific child care support, allowing employees who are working parents to balance their professional and parental duties much more conveniently. Companies may cover some of the childcare expenses, or even provide employees with spaces to take care of their children. 

    Here are some more employee benefits companies should consider providing:

    • Employee clubs (music clubs, sports clubs, game nights)
    • Free memberships (libraries, gyms, etc.)
    • Able to bring pets to work
    • Paid time to volunteer
    • Transport (travel expenses, company car)
    • Tickets to concerts, sports games, movies, etc.

    Employee Benefits Made Easier

    Track time easily to make employee benefits more efficient and transparent.

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    Use Technology To Build Employee Benefit Programs

    When considering the best benefits to provide for your employees, it’s important to find the right tools to help make this process quick, affordable, and effective. Connecteam is an ideal solution for companies looking to reward their employees and make them feel appreciated.

    Easy time tracking: Make sure your employee’s financial benefits are accurate and automated with Connecteam. Managers can use the time clock to track and manage their employee’s work hours, optimize the payroll process and prevent time theft from occurring. Employee benefits such as paid sick leave, paid vacation, overtime and hourly wages are all accounted for.

    Internal Communication: All parties can clearly benefit from transparency when it comes to employee benefits. Through Connecteam, managers can provide employees with a variety of benefits through internal communication features. For example, invite employees to fun events such as movie nights, concerts, and employee clubs. Also, announce “employees of the month” via company updates, and reward high performers with gift cards and vouchers. Also, improve employee benefit transparency through 1:1 and group chats.

    Checklists/forms/reports: use Connecteam to digitize various employee benefits such as reimbursement forms, insurance forms, retirement plans, and stock options. Automate information flow and save time filling in tons of paperwork.

    Digitized Workflows: managers can send read and sign forms on Connecteam, allowing employees to approve adjustments to various benefit plans.

    Free Onboarding: provide employees with e-learning courses, training manuals, and videos to teach them new skills and keep them up to date with the latest protocols (health and safety). 

    The Bottom Line On Employee Benefits

    By now, it should be abundantly clear that there are many different types of benefits that companies can provide for their employees. Different benefits differ in value. Some help improve employee engagement, productivity, and retention, while others directly benefit employees’ health and wellbeing.

    We wouldn’t recommend simply taking all of the previously mentioned benefits and dishing them out to all of your employees. The benefits you provide completely depend on the industry you work in and your employees’ circumstances.

    Take some time to decide which employee benefits are worth adopting. Once you have chosen which ones to provide, it’s important to use the right tools to implement them. Using Connecteam allows companies to provide employee benefits easily, affordably, and efficiently. No longer will you need to handle such matters via emails and pens and paper. 

    Now that you have learned about employee benefits in so much detail, you are now ready to make your employees feel rewarded and appreciated.

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