The employee benefits your company offers have a direct impact on your ability to attract new staff and keep your best ones excited to be part of your team.
While many employee benefits are seen as standard, such as health insurance, there is a growing demand for new offerings, especially flexible work environments and schedules. Research also shows an interesting mix of requests for disability and life insurance, wellness programs and more if you want your company to stand out in this increasingly tight labor market.
I’ve been reading the latest research on how employee benefit packages impact retention and recruitment, and I think you’ll find these articles and studies helping to create a more compelling offer for your team.
2019 Compensation Best Practices: PayScale
“Compared to previous years, we’re seeing organizations make greater use of incentives, benefits and perks to hire and retain in this tight job market. Employers are expanding beyond traditional benefits like employer-paid health insurance and retirement plans to keep up with evolving employee needs and desires. We see many organizations embracing work-life balance as a differentiator.”
Key benefit offerings:
- 44% of organizations allow remote work (up from 39% last year)
- 37% offer flextime
- 32% offer paid family leave (up from 29%)
- 10% offer a four-day work week
- Unlimited PTO has nearly doubled in the last two years
Does Your Workplace Deliver?: Staples
“Employees desire flexibility,” says Staples’ Workplace Survey 2019. It notes 90% of companies say allowing for more flexible work arrangements and schedules will increase employee morale. Perhaps more importantly, 67% say they would consider leaving their job if their work arrangements became less flexible. And 77% of companies believe that allowing employees to work remotely will lower their operating costs.
“The key to providing the best benefits for your employees is understanding what they define as valuable. For 44 million Americans struggling with student debt, a major draw to a potential job is whether or not they offer student loan repayment assistance,” writes Tim Johnson, CEO of Mondo. “Even offering an employer contribution of $50 or $100 can go a long way toward attracting professionals [because] three-quarters of borrowers make monthly payments of $300 or less.”
“When it comes to paid time off (PTO), job seekers highly value the ability to take time off, whether it’s for leisure or health. In total, 88% of our survey participants said vacation and paid time off are important when searching for a job … When deciding to accept a job offer, 66% of employees said the employer’s paid parental leave policy is important. In contrast, only 13% of employers offer paid parental leave in their benefits package.”
Free Snacks Won’t Retain Workers Long Term. Here’s What Will: Employee Benefit News
“[Free food] is great. But some companies are using it as incentive to keep people there — and that’s not going to keep people there… Instead of offering small perks like snacks, the report says that if a company wants to retain millennial workers, it should offer benefits that allow greater work flexibility, more vacation time, training and development, and opportunities to make a difference.”
The 2019 landscape includes more millennials and Gen Z employees in the workforce than ever before. It’s time for companies to adapt to their changing demands.
Editor's Note: This article was originally published in 2015 and was substantially reworked in March 2019.