Your small business benefits package says a lot about you and your company culture: what’s valued, what’s rewarded, whether you think outside the box. Today many businesses are struggling to attract the best talent, so now your choices matter more than ever.
Creating an Intentional Benefits Package
As an owner and employee benefits advisor at Healy Group, I have first-hand knowledge about how your company perks make a difference to employees. Beyond the typical employee benefits–health insurance, paid time off, retirement—I’ll share some employee perks that Healy Group has instituted to help build the best package for our team and attract new talent.
1. Peer Recognition
Small actions go a long way in building a positive work culture. At our quarterly company meetings, employees are encouraged to give “shout-outs” to other employees who have gone above and beyond. In our last meeting, the “shout-outs” lasted longer than any other topic discussed. It’s a great way for us to highlight our company culture, The Four Tenants of the Healy Spirit (Love Wins; Make It A Great Day; Do The Right Thing; Be Better).
2. Seasonal Activities
An easy and affordable way to keep things exciting – even in the dreary winter months – is to offer activities for employees that coincide with the season. At Healy Group, we call these times “Food, Fun, and Fellowship.” For example, to celebrate the Indy 500 we gather during lunch and host a toy car race of our own or when we’re celebrating football season we put on an office cornhole tournament.
3. Volunteer Time Off
Want to encourage employees to give back in the community? Give your employees paid-time-off specifically for volunteering. Healy Group recently adopted a paid-time-off policy for employees to volunteer in the community. It helps create a culture of giving back and it offers employees an opportunity to volunteer at their children’s’ schools or other organizations close to their heart.
4. Lunch & Learn
We host monthly lunch-and-learns where employees or outside experts teach the team about a specific topic. Healy Group surveyed the employees to determine if there was interest and what topics they would like to learn more about. As a bonus, lunch is also provided to attendees. Favorite topics have included Leadership Development, Excel Training, and Personal Finance.
5. Career Development Opportunities
Every good employee wants to expand his or her skill set. Online-courses, professional seminars, accreditation education programs and other low-cost continuing education strategies are a win-win. Pay for memberships to professional organizations, introduce a tuition reimbursement program or provide an annual learning stipend. You could even launch a mentoring program that pairs junior and senior employees. As your employees get better at their careers you grow as an organization.
Did you say food? Growling stomachs and “hangry” employees can stifle productivity and harmony in the workplace. Keeping employees fueled and hydrated with snacks and beverages can go a long way. Easy snacks like crackers, nuts, and small candies as well as water and other beverages are great ways to boost employee morale.
7. Office Environment
Not in a new office building? It’s not all about the latest “bells and whistles,” but making the workspace comfortable and inviting is important. Scented soaps and lotions in the bathrooms, a basket of blankets for people who are chilly, standing desks and dual monitors, and encouraging employees to decorate their spaces are ways to create comfortable inviting workspaces. To lower stress in the work environment during peak busy times, Healy Group pays for 15-minute massages for employees.
8. Personal Development Activities
Everyone loves being inspired, yet, employees often have little time left after work to participate in these types of endeavors. Host a 30-minute yoga or meditation session or an inspirational speaker series to spark employee creativity and well-being. Healy Group hosted a three-day seminar for employees to learn more about Choice Theory, which supports practices and habits to maintain good relationships with work colleagues, friends and family members.
9. Birthday and Christmas Shopping Holidays
Making time-off personal is a great way to show appreciation to your employees. In addition to the traditional holidays, Healy Group gives employees one paid holiday the month of their birthday and one in December.
10. Flexible work schedules
Rigid schedules without flexibility can create stress and burnout, which eventually leads to turnover. Not every organization can offer telecommuting and flextime because they serve customers at their physical location however, you can still find small ways to build flexibility in the workplace. Parents of young children may prefer to come in an hour later in the morning and stay an hour later at the end of the day. Businesses can make it easy to swap shifts or job share. Allow your team flexibility to make appointments or have the opportunity to leave early or come late if they want to make up the time at home. Flexibility helps employees build schedules that work with their lifestyle.
Customized Benefits Create Healthy Organizations
Spend some time figuring out which mix of company perks would best serve your team. The pay-off is happy, content employees who are more productive and less likely to leave the organization.
In addition, Healy Group employee benefits advisors can help you structure an ideal voluntary benefits package that allows employees to invest in benefits that fit their needs and lifestyle at no cost to the employer.
Need help structuring a voluntary benefits plan for your organization? Healy Group’s team of highly experienced employee benefits advisors is ready to help you create the ideal benefits package for your company.
About the Author:
Alicia Webber, a Risk Management Advisor at Healy Group, has over 20 years of experience in employee benefits. She enjoys working with her clients to design robust, cost-effective employee benefits strategies that support the goals of their organizations.